Williams Martini Racing had a double points finish at today’s Malaysian Grand Prix, with Felipe Massa finishing in ninth, behind rookie team-mate Lance Stroll.
The Brazilian driver started the race in eleventh place but was able to make up ground at the start. It was here that he had contact with Sahara Force India F1 Team‘s Esteban Ocon, who subsequently got a puncture and was forced to take an early pitstop. Massa also got damage, as he damaged the floor of the car – and felt as though this cost him a lot of places.
The majority of the rest of the race was spent battling Stroll, but even this cost them at times. The drivers were attempting to exchange places by the exit of the pit lane and this allowed the just-pitted Stoffel Vandoorne to get past both of them. The McLaren Honda Formula 1 driver was their main competition for the rest of the race, but managed to maintain and even increase a lead over the two Williams drivers.
“I had a fantastic start and overtook many cars,” commented Massa.
“So I was really disappointed about the incident at Turn 2, where I got pushed out by Ocon. I lost a lot of places and damaged the floor of the car.”
Massa thought that the team could have finished higher up the grid had it not been for the incident with Ocon, but was relieved that both he and Stroll brought home valuable points that are crucial in the mid-field Constructor’s Championship battle between them, Renault Sport Formula 1 Team and Scuderia Toro Rosso.
“I feel like I could have got higher up if it hadn’t happened. But overall the result was positive for the team. We scored points whilst Renault and Toro Rosso didn’t, so that helps us in the Constructors’ Championship.”