Massa: Waking from the nightmare
AUTOSPORT's Grand Prix editor Mark Hughes assesses the challenge faced by Felipe Massa at Ferrari as he rebounds from his life-threatening accident in Hungary and squares up to his new team-mate Fernando Alonso
Felipe Massa could be forgiven for thinking it had all just been a bad dream. For most of 2009 there he was, blowing away Kimi Raikkonen, just as he had done in '08. The '09 Ferrari wasn't great, but Felipe was maximising it, dragging from it points it didn't deserve, whereas Kimi just seemed to have given up on it. Qualifying in Hungary was going well, the car seemed genuinely competitive for once, Felipe had worked away with his engineer Rob Smedley to find a great balance and then… it all went black.
Until this point it had all seemed real, but then he awoke in a hospital bed, feeling very spaced out, his family all around him. Seemed he'd had an accident in this dream, some bizarre story about a damper spring from another car hitting him on the head – yeah, as if anything like that ever happens. But this dream just kept getting stranger because as he recovered, became stronger, so it seemed that the world champion he'd blown away was no longer going to be his team-mate.
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