Massa on Hamilton, Verstappen battle


As one of the backmarkers who got involved in the end-of-race battle, Felipe Massa says there was just no place to let Max Verstappen after initially making way for Lewis Hamilton.

The final two laps of Sunday’s Japanese Grand Prix saw Verstappen close right up on Hamilton as the latter reported a vibration and dealt with traffic.

That traffic, though, ultimately played into his hands.

Both Fernando Alonso and Massa got between Hamilton and Verstappen giving the Mercedes driver vital tenths on the Red Bull racer.

Alonso was penalised for it, however, Massa was not.

Explaining his actions, the Williams driver told F1Fantatic: “The problem is that I let Lewis by on the straight and then you had so many Esses.

“I was behind Lewis, losing being very close to him so I was going to let Max past after corner seven, which is what I did.

“So at the end when I get to sector one it is very difficult to park the car, I was fighting with Fernando [Alonso] as well.

“I understand that maybe it was the last lap a nice fight for you guys to see on the television but I did maybe five corners, one after the other and then I let him by.”