Felipe Massa admitted that eleventh place on the grid was not what he nor his Williams Martini Racing team were expecting for this weekend’s Italian Grand Prix, his last as a Formula 1 driver following the announcement of his retirement on Friday.
The Brazilian went into the session expecting to qualify inside the top ten, but was unable to better his first time after lacking the grip with his tyres after a slow outlap that ultimately meant Massa missed out on Q3 by 0.016 seconds.
“P11 is not where we expected to be today – we thought we would get into Q3 quite easily, so it’s a bit disappointing,” said Massa.
“I had to go very slow on my outlap before my second run in Q2, and as a result the tyres lacked the grip I needed to improve my time and everyone else was going quicker.”
Despite the disappointment of qualifying, Massa still took the positives out of the session, with the Brazilian the first of those able to choose his starting tyre, which could benefit him on race day.
“The benefit is that I get a free choice of tyres tomorrow for the race which will help us with the strategy, so hopefully we can make the most of that,” said Massa.