Felipe Massa has said that he is targeting a return to the cockpit at the season finale at the Yas Marina circuit in Abu Dhabi next month. The Brazilian, who suffered a serious head injury in qualifying for the Hungarian Grand Prix earlier this year, is to test a F2007 later this month as he and doctors assess his ability to cope with the demands of driving an F1 car.
Massa had wanted to return for his home grand prix in two weeks’ time, but doctors suggested it was better to wait.
“It [returning in Brazil] would be too close to the limit,” Massa told Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport. “We’ll see for Abu Dhabi, we’ll need the FIA’s authorization. It depends on this test [with the F2007].”
All eyes will be on Massa’s test, which will take place at Ferrari’s test track Fiorano using the two-year old Ferrari with GP2 tyres on it, in order to simulate the slicks which are being used this season. Massa has stressed that he is not concerned with setting competitive lap times, but nevertheless Ferrari bosses will be watching him closely.
“I perfectly remember how to drive. My worry isn’t to immediately get a good laptime, but just to run again. In any case you need a good car and a good set-up.”
“The damage could have been very serious and, considering the way I feel now, I have no doubt: I was very lucky. I’ve often seen again the crash on TV and also myself with the injured eye immediately after. It’s shocking, but I was asleep and couldn’t feel anything.”