Felipe Massa’s luck has failed to improve in Canada after his qualifying session ended in the wall due to a mistake in the wet conditions. The Brazilian driver experienced two heavy crashes at the last grand prix in Monaco, requiring medical attention after the race, and his state of mind will not have been aided by the incident in qualifying today.
During Q2, Massa was looking to improve his time in an attempt to avoid the dropzone, sitting 15th at the time of the incident. Heading into turn three (where Massa had already been off in Q1), the Ferrari driver clipped the slippery white line on the outside of the corner under braking, causing his F138 to slide off the track and into the wall with quite a heavy impact.
Unsurprisingly, Massa was very frustrated, hitting his steering wheel with his fists once his car had come to rest. The incident brought out the red flag, ending the session temporarily whilst the Ferrari was recovered, and it caused a rather humorous rush to the end of the pit lane as the remaining drivers looked to squeeze in one final lap time.
Massa eventually finished the session in P16 after Adrian Sutil improved to make it through to Q3. Ferrari will be disappointed with the incident, and with it following his two crashes in Monaco, the pressure will be on the Brazilian driver to perform in the race tomorrow.
Three weeks after announcing his retirement from motorsport, Johnny Cecotto Jr. will return to racing this weekend at the GP2 round in Sochi, Russia.
Cecotto said on Twitter that “today my career ends” on September 17, announcing that he had lost his backing provided by the government of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.
However, the GP2 veteran will return to racing this weekend with Trident, having last raced for the Italian team at Monza one month ago. He will partner Ferrari junior driver Raffaele Marciello once again.
Cecotto’s return is just one of a number of driver/team stories heading into the GP2 race weekend at Sochi:
- American driver Alexander Rossi returns to GP2 with Racing Engineering this weekend following his two-race stint in F1 with Manor. He will also take part in grands prix in the USA, Mexico and Brazil before returning to GP2 once again in Abu Dhabi.
- Julian Leal has announced his retirement from GP2, and is replaced by debutant Dean Stoneman at Carlin. Stoneman won at Sochi in GP3 last year en route to second place in the championship.S
- Sean Gelael will race for Carlin once again, having missed the round at Monza due to a Formula Renault 3.5 clash.
- Nicholas Latifi returns to GP2 this weekend with MP Motorsport, racing alongside Rene Binder.
- Nathanael Berthon also returns, racing for Team Lazarus.
- Hilmer Motorsport will miss the round in Sochi altogether, reducing the grid down to 24 cars.
The FIA Formula E Championship will add Hong Kong to its calendar for its third season, 2016-2017.
The race will take place on October 9, 2016 – exactly one year from now – around the city’s Central district. The 2km circuit will run between Lung Wo Road and the Star Ferry, with cars reaching speeds of up to 225kph (140mph).
The launch event today featured the Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, the Honourable CY Leung; Mr. Gregory So, Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development; Mr. Alejandro Agag, CEO, Formula E Holdings; Mr. Lawrence Yu Kam-Kee, President of the Hong Kong Automobile Association; and reigining FE champion Nelson Piquet Jr.
“The Hong Kong ePrix will be one of the highlights on the FIA Formula E Championship calendar,” Agag said in a release. “As one of the most innovative, cutting-edge and fun-loving cities in the world, Hong Kong and Formula E share many of the same qualities. We look forward to bringing all the fun and entertainment of Formula E to this amazing city, and international motorsport back to Hong Kong.”
The track map is linked below.