"It was re­ally heart­break­ing"

Fan sup­port stuns Wi­il­iams man

Motor Sport News - - Headline News - By Rob Lad­brook Pho­tos: LAT

Felipe Massa has ad­mit­ted to be­ing blown away by the re­cep­tion he re­ceived fol­low­ing his re­tire­ment from his fi­nal home grand prix in Brazil last week­end.

Massa, 35, was run­ning in 13th place when he lost con­trol of his Wil­liams on the exit of the fi­nal cor­ner and spun into the bar­ri­ers. His car sus­tained heavy dam­age and came to rest near the pit lane en­try.

Af­ter climb­ing from his car, Massa was greeted by ap­plause and chants from the Brazil­ian fans, and later re­ceived a guard of hon­our from ri­val teams such as Mercedes and Fer­rari as he walked through the pit lane with a Brazil­ian flag draped across his shoul­ders.

Massa, who will re­tire from grand prix rac­ing af­ter the sea­son fi­nale in Abu Dhabi later this month, said: “It was heart­break­ing. I didn’t want it to fin­ish like this. I wanted to fin­ish with a good re­sult for the fans, for Brazil, for my team, for me. Un­for­tu­nately I couldn’t.

“I just got in the cor­ner and sud­denly aqua­planed. I was slid­ing and I couldn’t stop the car. When I hit the wall, it just pushed me to the in­side and maybe the sus­pen­sion broke and then I had another big crash on the other side. Maybe God knows what to do, to stop me in the place to be in front of my fans. I had an amaz­ing feel­ing with the fans and I couldn’t stop cry­ing.

“Then, I didn’t imag­ine the re­ac­tion in the pit­lane. Teams I didn’t even work for, like Mercedes, it was very hu­man the re­ac­tion. I had so much love from the peo­ple, from other teams clap­ping their hands for me. It’s a day that will be im­pos­si­ble to for­get and an amaz­ing feel­ing. I don’t think I de­serve so much like this.”

Massa will end his 15-year F1 ca­reer on his 250th GP start, and has been a win­ner in his home event twice – in­clud­ing the 2008 in­stal­ment when he lost the world cham­pi­onship in the fi­nal cor­ner.

Massa: Emo­tional

Massa walked back to the pits Ac­ci­dent left Massa in front of his sup­port­ers, who rose

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