Massa credits M. Schumacher for rise to top

Mon, 5 March 2007, 09:37

Felipe Massa credits his now retired former teammate Michael Schumacher for his rise to apparent championship contention in 2007.

Ferrari’s Brazilian racer told the newspaper ‘Bild-Zeitung’ that he made the most of sharing a garage with the seven time world champion throughout Schumacher’s last season of racing in 2006.

“I learned so much from him,” Massa, 25, said. “Without him I would not be where I am.”

Massa, previously criticised for erratic driving and being favoured by Jean Todt because he is managed by Todt’s son, has had arguably the best winter period of the entire 2007 field and could emerge quicker than teammate Kimi Raikkonen at the season opener later this month.

He quashed the suggestions of a year ago that he was merely warming the seat alongside Schumacher until Ferrari picked the German’s long term successor.

“I’m not a stopgap solution anymore,” he insisted.

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