MARCH 23, 2012
Massa takes positives from hard day at Sepang
BY TONY DODGINS
Despite placing 13th in the first session of free practice for the Malaysian GP, and 16th in the second, under pressure Ferrari driver Felipe Massa believes he can be much stronger in qualifying.
After a poor race in Melbourne, Ferrari has flown a new chassis to Malaysia for Massa to drive.
"I started this morning with a completely different car and it felt good," Massa explained. "Then, in the afternoon we tried different pieces, even pieces that we tried in Australia as well, and everything went in a worse direction.
"I think that was very positive to understanding the direction that we need to go. At least to find why things were very difficult in Australia. I think tomorrow we can take a big step and be much more competitive."
Massa confirmed that Ferrari's F2012 is suffering from rear end instability, especially in the slow corners, and from a little bit of understeer in high-speed corners.
The Brazilian said: " We need to score as many points as possible. How many, we will see after qualifying."
The Italian media, without a driver in F1 this year for the first time since the seventies, have been clamouring for Massa's head despite Ferrari obviously having car problems in Australia/Malaysia.
Names mentioned as possible replacements include Sauber's Sergio Perez and Jarno Trulli, currently without a drive after losing his Caterham seat to Vitaly Petrov.