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Massa relaxed about F1 future despite Kubica, di Resta test reports

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Felipe Massa is staying relaxed about his racing future despite reportedly looking unlikely to remain with Williams in Formula 1 for the 2018 season.

Massa had planned to retire at the end of last year before being brought back by Williams after Valtteri Bottas’ sudden move up to Mercedes in place of world champion Nico Rosberg, who quit racing five days after winning the title.

Massa has enjoyed his unexpected season so much he is keen to extend his stay with Williams through to 2018, but the team is known to be considering alternatives for 2018.

As per Motor Sport Magazine‘s Mark Hughes, the team will hold a shootout between reserve driver Paul di Resta, who deputized for Massa in Hungary, and Robert Kubica, whose comeback push with Renault has been one of the stories of the year.

Both drivers will get a one-day test in Hungary using a 2014-spec car for a chance to partner Lance Stroll next year, leaving Massa out of the picture.

However, Massa said on Thursday at Suzuka he remains engaged in talks with Williams regarding next year and is relaxed whatever the outcome.

“To be honest in my head I’m pretty relaxed, so I’m enjoying and trying to do the best I can in the last races this year,” Massa said.

“I don’t know what’s going to happen next year. But I’m quite relaxed. I’m quite keen to do maybe another season. I think I can do it in a great way. I can give a lot to the team, like I did already and I think maybe I can do another year.

“I’m talking with the team definitely for next year and we are in discussion. So everything has some directions around, so I have my direction as well to follow, like a professional driver, like I was always in my career in Formula 1 and I am very happy for that.

“That’s the way it is and definitely I can do a good effort for the team but we need to find a good solution to carry on in the right way, that everybody is happy.”

Asked directly about the test with Kubica and di Resta, Massa questioned just how representative or informative running with an old car could be.

“Williams know 100 per cent what I can give to the team and, even if you do a test with a car that is four years before, completely different,” Massa said.

“You cannot evaluate too much, as well. So it doesn’t change anything for me, to be honest.”

Red Bull Air Race: Yoshi Muroya joins Sato as Japanese champs at Indy

Photo: Joerg Mitter/Red Bull Content Pool
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Takuma Sato isn’t the only major Japanese athlete to take home top honors at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway this year. Countryman Yoshihide Muroya joined him in that on Sunday after winning Red Bull Air Race at IMS, and the Red Bull Air Race World Championship in the process.

Fittingly, the 101st Indianapolis 500 champion was there on site to join him in the celebration.

Muroya flew with a track-record run in the final and erased the four-point deficit to points leader Martin Sonka. The record run came after a disappointing qualifying effort of 11th in the 14-pilot field in the Master Class.

A day after the win, Muroya joined Sato in heading to Sato’s new Verizon IndyCar Series team, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s, Indianapolis-based shop.

A few social posts from Muroya’s victory and the subsequent celebration are below.

CHECKING OUT EACH OTHER’S RIDES

ASTLES BREAKS THOUGH AS WELL

Muroya wasn’t alone among big winners at the Speedway. In the Challenger Class, Melanie Astles of France became the first woman to win a major race at IMS, and is the first female winner in the Red Bull Air Race World Championship.

Nine women have competed in the Indianapolis 500 (Janet Guthrie, Lyn St. James, Sarah Fisher, Danica Patrick, Milka Duno, Simona de Silvestro, Pippa Mann, Ana Beatriz, Katherine Legge) and Mann is the first woman to have been on the pole position at IMS, having done so for the Freedom 100 in 2010 in Indy Lights.

Photo: Joerg Mitter/Red Bull Content Pool