Felipe Massa felt no pressure in deciding on F1 comeback in 2017

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Felipe Massa says he felt no pressure when deciding to return to Formula 1 in 2017 despite initially planning to retire from the sport at the end of last year.

Massa announced last September that he would be leaving F1 following the 2016 season, making way at Williams for 18-year-old Lance Stroll to take a race seat.

Williams contacted Massa after lead driver Valtteri Bottas was approached by Mercedes following Nico Rosberg’s shock decision to retire from racing after winning the world championship.

Massa agreed a deal to un-retire in January, but said he felt under no pressure to do so when talking to reporters in Barcelona earlier this week.

“I decided to race. I had no pressure,” Massa said.

“Everything depended on me having the opportunity to race. I decided or not. If I was not happy to race, I would not decide [to].

“It’s not the money or anything around that would change my decision. My decision is ‘I want to race or not’.

“I like to race. I followed my heart, so there was no pressure to be honest. It’s just my decision.”

Even though this season is something of a bonus to Massa, given he was not expecting to race, the Brazilian does not think there will be an less pressure on his shoulders.

“Oh I think you always have pressure,” Massa said.

“Pressure in Formula 1 is normal. It’s part of the game.

“Anyway, I think I have enough experience to support the pressure.”