Ferrari’s Felipe Massa had a miserable weekend in Monaco, ending with a crash that sent him to hospital, but one bad event is unlikely to alter his status in the immediate future.
Interestingly, the team did have Kamui Kobayashi on hand as a guest this weekend. The ex-Sauber and Toyota driver failed to find the backing to continue for a fourth full season in Formula One, and has taken up residence in an AF Corse Ferrari F458 Italia in the FIA World Endurance Championship this year.
On Monday, Kobayashi was in a Ferrari of the F1 variety – its 2010-spec chassis at its Fiorano test track, according to Autosport. His run in the F10 was in preparation for a promotional event in Moscow on July 21.
The Japanese driver, who scored his first career podium in his home race at Suzuka last year, was humbled by the experience.
“The first feeling was one of great happiness,” he said. “I raced against this car and I knew how quick it was, so it was very important to get some experience of it. Last year’s race in Brazil was the last time I drove a Formula One car and now I am racing in the WEC in a 458 GT, and the impressions are completely different.”
Several members of the NBC Sports motorsports staff have made their predictions on who will win Sunday’s 102nd Running of the Indianapolis 500.
Of the six voters, two are going with 2017 Verizon IndyCar Series champ Josef Newgarden, while two others are going with Helio Castroneves to win a fourth 500, which would tie him with A.J. Foyt, Al Unser and Rick Mears.
Here’s our picks. Who are YOU picking?
Leigh Diffey: Helio Castroneves — He drives the place better than anyone else. For me (for what its worth) he deserves a fourth 500 ring for the frustration he went through never getting the IndyCar title!
Townsend Bell: Josef Newgarden
Nate Ryan: Simon Pagenaud — All of his 2018 misfortune on the track has disappeared in May, and it culminates in the biggest victory of his career.
Jerry Bonkowski: Helio Castroneves – There’s no pressure as he pursues his fourth Indy 500 win. All Helio has to do, as late NFL owner Al Davis would say, is “Just win, baby!” (But if Helio falls short, watch for Marco Andretti)
Kyle Lavigne: Josef Newgarden — I think he has everything he needs to get it done this year.
Dan Beaver: Robert Wickens – Has driven like anything except a rookie and his second-place finish at Phoenix proves he’s just as good on an oval as the road courses.
Follow: Jerry Bonkowski