• Brazilian Grand Prix - FP2

Ferrari is in good shape - Massa

ESPN Staff
November 23, 2012 « Raikkonen has faith Lotus will sort car for qualifying | Caterham has 'big potential' - Pic »
Felipe Massa thinks he could have knocked two tenths off his best time © Sutton Images
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Felipe Massa believes Ferrari is more competitive than it looked during the first two practice sessions for the Brazilian Grand Prix.

Massa was fourth fastest, ahead of his championship-challenging team-mate Fernando Alonso, and roughly 0.5s off the pace of Lewis Hamilton at the front. Massa said his long run pace was promising and his ultimate lap time could have been 0.2s quicker, which would have brought him on a par with Sebastian Vettel in the second session.

"Definitely the car was okay on the long run," he said. "I expected to have an even higher degradation than I had on the long. Even on my best lap I went too wide on corner two and it jumped over the kerbs so I lost a couple of tenths by doing that. The next lap I was two tenths quicker than my best time in sector one, so I think my lap time was supposed to be two tenths quicker.

"Then on the long run I was able to do everything normally and we were pretty good and competitive and so I was happy. I hope this can be a good help if we have a race in the dry, I don't think it will be [dry], but if it is in the dry we know the car can be competitive. We have to see how Red Bull and McLaren will be tomorrow."

But Massa said he would not seek a wet setup for Sunday's race because Ferrari needs to maximise its pace in qualifying if it is dry.

"We cannot give away performance in qualifying. We have to prepare the car to be as quick as possible, especially because I was suffering a lot of oversteer this morning, in the afternoon it got a little bit better. So if I put the car for the wet I don't think it will be very good for qualifying. Even if we are stuck behind it is a problem, especially in the rain when you don't see anything."

He admitted that racing to help Alonso complicated his weekend, but he said he was happy to help Ferrari in any way possible.

"It's more difficult, but that's the way it is so we have to try to do the best job in the best direction for what the team wants. But, anyway, I just want to be as quick as possible."