Felipe Massa’s struggles continue in qualifying (VIDEO)

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So far, Ferrari pilot Felipe Massa has had a trying British Grand Prix weekend after a crash in FP2 on Friday and now a failure to advance into Q3 during Saturday’s qualifying sessions at Silverstone.

Saturday was a sub-par afternoon all around for the Prancing Horse, which saw team leader Fernando Alonso only qualify tenth before advancing to ninth on the provisional grid following Paul di Resta’s relegation to the back of the field for Sunday. As for Massa, he’s now slated to start 11th on the inside of the sixth row alongside Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne.

The Brazilian racer has definitely hit a rough patch in recent weeks, and so far, Silverstone has not raised his fortunes. Robbed of valuable track time thanks to both his Friday crash and a pre-qualifying engine change early on Saturday, Massa was then forced to contend with a lack of grip on his car in qualifying.

He admitted afterwards that he may need track temperatures to rise on Sunday in order to have a chance at a solid points day.

“It was an extremely difficult day as we did not have the car we were expecting and we had no grip whatsoever with new tires,” Massa said. “Compared to other cars, we struggled to put together a good lap.

“…We must think about tomorrow, as the race is an altogether different matter, and I hope that, with a full fuel load and higher temperatures, things can change in our favor. If the car is more competitive, I’m sure I can pull off a few passing moves and fight for a good result.”

Massa has never hit the podium at Silverstone in ten career Formula One starts there.

Helio Castroneves ‘hustling’ for IndyCar, IMSA rides; talking with four to five teams

Helio Castroneves IMSA IndyCar
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As his season gathers steam, Helio Castroneves said his prospects for finding new rides for 2021 in IMSA and IndyCar also are gaining momentum.

The three-time Indianapolis 500 winner said Monday he is optimistic about landing in either or perhaps a combination of both series when Team Penske and Acura end their DPi partnership after this season.

“A lot of people I spoke with, four to five teams, are interested,” Castroneves said. “Whether it’s doing Indy 500 only, whether it’s pushing to do full time or do the sports cars as well. It’s been a very nice conversation.

LOOKING AHEADTeam Penske drivers seeking new rides for 2021

“I have a lot of respect for all the teams that have been talking, and I feel the same feedback. We just have to wait for their (sponsor) connections, and I’m also looking for some connections on my side as well, so hopefully we’ll be able to put this together and get something very soon.”

Given two decades of success with Penske in IndyCar and IMSA, Castroneves’ resume hardly needs burnishing. But the Brazilian has combined with co-driver Ricky Taylor in the No. 7 Acura DPi to win the past two overall victories at Road America and Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta.

But Castroneves, who doesn’t have a manager, said he has been working the phones hard rather than wait for the strong results to bring in the calls.

“At this point, I feel like I’m the one who needs to be talking to them because people need to know I want to continue racing and understand my desire,” Castroneves, 45, said. “There is opportunity, no question, in both (IndyCar and IMSA), which I’m really happy about it. However, because of the COVID-19, a lot of things sometimes have to be a little delayed. But I’m excited. Whatever the opportunity and whatever destiny guides me, whether IndyCar or sports cars, trust me I’ll be as happy as it could be and doing my 100 percent like I always did.

“It’s like politics, you need to be out there, good news or bad news. People have to make notice of your presence. I’m hustling. I want to continue to keep it going. Hopefully, we’ll have good news very soon.”

The news has been all good lately on track for Castroneves and Taylor, who hope to continue their run Sunday at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.

The No. 6 duo has surged to sixth in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship standings, 10 points out of the lead with four races remaining. After thinking there was “no hope” to be competitive after opening the season with three consecutive poor finishes, Taylor now sees an opportunity for a happy ending.

“With the program going away, Helio has won all the big races and given so much back to the team and left such a mark, he’s really part of Penske history,” Taylor said. “For me, it’s been an opportunity of a lifetime to be a part of it. I’d like to leave my little mark as well. Helio has won everything except for a championship.

“Obviously, we’ve won races already together, but we can win a championship now. I think if both of us can do that together and both win our first championship for ‘The Captain,’ that would be an absolute dream come true, and we can tie a bow on it and be happy.”