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Massa against in-season rule changes

NEWS STORY
03/08/2016

Although in favour of the U-turn on radio communications, Felipe Massa is generally against in-season rule changes.

It's fair to say that this season has been something of a landmark in terms of in-season rule changes, beginning with the disastrous attempt at a new qualifying format and continuing with all manner of other changes and U-turns including track limits and radio communications.

Brazilian veteran Felipe Massa is not overly impressed.

"Ahead of the Hockenheim weekend, F1 took some important decisions on the rules front," told Motorsport.com. "And, as happens quite often in this sport, there were pros and cons to what happened.

"The scrapping of the limits on team radio communications between drivers and the teams helped improve things for fans," he continued. "We returned to being able to talk freely, and those that watch the sport can follow what happened with greater transparency because there are no more limits on what we can talk about. Before this change happened, there were often some very interesting race situations but the drivers could not speak freely, and that made things hard to understand.

"I am always sceptical when rules get changed in the middle of the season," he admits. "And in my case what was decided ahead of the German Grand Prix did not make a big difference. I got used to the radio silence before Hockenheim, and I started to talk without problems last weekend. But there were also some penalties imposed on drivers in the two races before Germany, so some doubts remain.

"My view is it is not ideal to change the rules of a grand prix from one race to the next unless there are good safety grounds."

Heading off to his native Brazil, where he hopes to attend some of The Olympic events, Massa admits that the summer break comes as welcome relief after schedule which has seen six races in eight weeks.

"With 21 races this year marking the longest Formula 1 calendar, most people in the paddock have arrived at the summer break with the need to recharge the batteries. But if I could choose between having this number of races, or testing more, I think I would always rather be going to a track to compete in a grand prix. I guess my opinion is shared by many drivers.

"We love competition, and the race is the moment when you really feel all that adrenaline. Tests can be useful, but emotionally they are not the same thing.

"Saying that, four races in one month is a lot, especially if you do not get the desired results," he admits. "In my case, the August break has come at the right time to help me recharge my batteries and think of a more positive second half of the championship."

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