Felipe Massa – 6
One of the most popular drivers on the grid, Felipe Massa has just missed out on two world championships and cheated death in his career. Returning in 2010, his season began with a lot of potential. But since then, Fernando Alonso has pushed his way into the team’s top driver slot and left Felipe hanging. Only once has the Brazilian beaten his teammate in qualifying this season – an event which occurred at the Hungarian Grand Prix.
At the start of the year, Felipe was able to beat Fernando in the Malaysian and Chinese Grands Prix, each time finishing one place ahead, but since then he’s been struggling. In Turkey, he finished 11th compared to third for Alonso taking his first podium of the season. He then retired from the next two races – a gearbox problem in Spain, and taken out by Lewis Hamilton in Monaco. Canada was a good race though, and he led for one lap, sitting in third at the red flag. He spent most of that race battling with Kamui Kobayashi, and in a photo finish just pipped the Japanese driver on the line.
Since Canada, he has had three fifth-place finishes and came sixth in Hungary. He also took the fastest lap there, just as he did in Australia. He has never failed to qualify in the top ten, and his best qualifying came in Canada. Whether Felipe will be able to beat Alonso again in qualifying is an interesting question, but hopefully he will get a boost from having done so in Hungary.
Worst qualifying: 10
Best qualifying: 3
Worst finish: 11 (Turkey)
Best finish: 5 (Malaysia, Valencia, Britain, Germany)
Average difference: -3
Laps completed: 627/681 (92%)
Average race position: 5.98 (Best: 3.9 China; Worst: 8.5 Turkey)