Massa takes grid penalty to help Alonso

ALAN BALDWIN
Last updated 07:41 19/11/2012
Felipe Massa
Getty Images
TOUGH BREAK: Felipe Massa has taken an unnecessary grid penalty to give teammate Fernando Alonso a better chance in the US Grand Prix.

Relevant offers

Motorsport

Scott McLaughlin among speedy young guns Hayden Paddon 10th in Rally Finland day one Fabian Coulthard wants consistency in Ipswich Ricciardo wins dramatic Hungarian Grand Prix Hayden Paddon is raring to go for Rally Finland Mitch Evans falls behind leaders in Hungary Richie Stanaway wins GP3 race in Hungary Nico Rosberg on pole as Hamilton catches fire Lewis Hamilton tops in hot Hungarian practice Ford to give wildcard Kiwis Bathurst push-start

Brazilian Felipe Massa took a five-place grid penalty for the US Formula One Grand Prix to help Ferrari team mate Fernando Alonso on Sunday.

Massa qualified ahead of the Spaniard, who is the only driver who can deny Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel a third successive title. Vettel, with a 10-point lead and one race remaining after Austin, starts on pole position.

Ferrari said they had broken a seal on Massa's gearbox, incurring the mandatory penalty, for "strategy considerations, with the objective of maximizing Alonso's start potential."

The penalty means Alonso will now start in seventh place and, crucially, on the 'clean' side of the grid.

"We saw yesterday that starting from the dirty side of the track would have been penalising: there was a significant risk of finding ourselves too far behind the leaders at the end of the first lap," Ferrari said on their website.

The team said both drivers had agreed the move.

"We've always maintained that the interests of the team come before that of the individual drivers and this has always been our very transparent policy," said Ferrari.

"Felipe has fully comprehended the reasons behind this decision and so he's once again proven his total dedication to the team - something for which we would publicly like to express our gratitude."

Ad Feedback

- Reuters

Special offers
Opinion poll

Which is your favourite Formula One circuit?

Melbourne

Monte Carlo

Silverstone

Singapore

Sao Paulo

San Marino

Nurburgring

Vote Result

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content

Blog