Ferrari won't rush driver decision
Domenicali says Massa's improved form won't speed up decision-making process
Last Updated: 12/09/12 10:43am
Felipe Massa: Still fighting for his Ferrari future
Stefano Domenicali says Ferrari won't be hurried into making a decision over their second driver for 2013 despite Felipe Massa delivering his strongest performance of the season at Monza.
With Massa himself having admitted that improved race results over the remainder of the campaign are key to earning a reprieve at Maranello, the Brazilian delivered a timely reminder of his capabilities at the team's home race by achieving his best grid slot since Canada 2011 and then racing well to fourth place, his joint best finish of the season.
Ferrari chief Domenicali says he was pleased with the 31-year-old's improved form but that there will be no change to the timeframe regarding the second seat for next year.
"We were really proud of the race of Felipe. Also qualifying was really good," Domenicali told reporters.
"He is a great driver, a professional driver, and that [you] know how personally I'm really behind him.
"He's performing this weekend the way that we wanted and there are no plans to accelerate or decelerate the process. We are talking together and we will keep you informed of course."
Nonetheless Massa was again overshadowed by the driver who has been most strongly tipped to replace him during the course of the season, Sergio Perez, as the young Sauber driver overtook both Ferrari drivers in the closing stages to finish second to Lewis Hamilton.
The 22-year-old visited Maranello on Tuesday as part of what Ferrari described as an appointment planned long in advance amid his ongoing development as a member of their driver academy and speaking following Sunday's race, Domenicali refused to be drawn on any future promotion to the team's race line-up.
"Regarding Sergio Perez there is nothing to add after what I said previously," the Italian said.
"He did a good race, no doubt, and congratulation to him.
"He was able to manage the tyres at the beginning up to a longer stint and then he had new medium [tyre] with a rubber that helped him to be one second, two seconds faster than the others so he caught up quite quickly."