Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo led the thanks to outgoing driver Felipe Massa at the team’s annual Finali Mondiali (World Final) celebrations in Italy.
Massa was greeted by cheering fans at the track as he prepares to start his final two races as a Ferrari driver before joining Williams next year.
“Felipe has been a true Ferrari man and he will always be part of our history, for all the grands prix he drove for us, for the wins, the pole positions and for those few seconds when he was world champion that day in Brazil, before that overtaking move that always seemed a bit strange to me,” said di Montezemolo. Massa narrowly missed out on winning the 2008 world championship when Lewis Hamilton overtook Timo Glock on the final lap as the Toyota driver struggled for grip on a wet track on dry weather tires.
“I wish Felipe every success, starting with the last two races of this championship,” Montezemolo continued.
“As for the rest of his Formula One career, I wish him the very best, but naturally, behind a Ferrari and anyway, I am sure we will get many chances to meet up again, because life is long and he will always be part of our family.”
The overpowering smell from nitromethane that powers Top Fuel dragsters and Funny Cars in the National Hot Rod Association oftentimes brings fans to tears after getting a whiff of the stuff.
Now there’s a new inspirational book that will also bring tears to the eyes of die-hard drag racing fans.
Veteran crew chief Jim Oberhofer has released “Top Fuel For Life, Life Lessons From A Crew Chief,” a touching homage to both his late wife and persevering and overcoming adversity in the highly competitive world of NHRA drag racing.
Oberhofer wears a number of hats as vice president of one of the sport’s most veteran and successful teams, Kalitta Motorsports, including serving as crew chief for Top Fuel driver Doug Kalitta’s dragster.
Oberhofer relates a number of stories about overcoming adversity in the book, but none more touching than how he watched his beloved wife “Tammy O” lose a long and painful battle to stage 4 metastatic lung cancer.
While Oberhofer has spent his life using wrenches and tools working on 10,000-horsepower engines, his new book shows that he is also a very gifted writer.
Known in the sport as “Jim O,” Oberhofer describes the fight his wife went through in gritty and descriptive prose, but with a foundation built upon what the love of his life meant to him – and continues to mean to him more than two years since she passed away.
“When you take a long hard look at your life, I guarantee you that being a winner has little to do with crossing the finish line,” Oberhofer said. “After many mistakes and a whole lot of heartache, I learned that happiness comes from a deeper, simpler place. That’s the big win.”
“Top Fuel For Life” is available on Amazon for $19.95.
Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone on Tuesday said the racing series is up for sale and has as many as three potential buyers.
Ecclestone told The Associated Press that a deal could still be struck by year’s end.
“I think so, maybe this year,” Ecclestone said. “There are three people mentioned to buy. So it’s a case of whether CVC or Mr. Mackenzie wants to sell.”
Ecclestone was referring to F1’s largest and controlling shareholder, CVC Capital Partners co-chairman Donald Mackenzie.
But even if F1 is sold, the 84-year-old Eccelstone doesn’t plan on going anywhere.
“The people that I’ve spoken to … have asked me if I would stay,” Ecclestone told AP.