October 12th, 2013 (F1Plus / Chris Cameron-Dow) - Felipe Massa has outqualified Fernando Alonso for the sixth time this season and the fourth time in the last seven races, by putting his car fifth on the grid at the Japanese Grand Prix.
After qualiyfing, Massa was extremely pleased with his own performance during the session. He said, “Managing to put together a perfect lap on this incredible track is always extremely satisfying and it reminded me of my pole here in 2006. Even if it’s a fifth place, it’s still a good starting point for tomorrow."
Massa attributed his strong qualifying lap to a good setup, which gave him the confidence to push the car to the limit. He said, "Already yesterday, I could feel the car was well balanced and today we did a good job, managing to get all the potential out of it. More than this was not possible, but I am very happy all the same."
Excited though he was about qualifying, Massa remains realistic about his chances in the race. He is nonetheless looking for a strong result, and hoping to emulate his performance from 2012, whene he finished second. Massa said:
"Sure, tomorrow’s race will not be easy, because we have some very fast cars ahead of us, but we can be in the game and for that we must concentrate to the maximum on strategy and tyre management. Getting a good result will depend very much on having a strong pace. Last year, I finished second here and this evening I will try and remember how I did it."