F1’s Felipe Massa has failed to win the ‘Inter-American Racing Driver’ of the year award for 2006.
Despite winning his first two career grands prix for Ferrari this season, including becoming the first Brazilian since Ayrton Senna to win at home, the 25-year-old was beaten to the title by Rodolfo Gonzalez.
Gonzalez won the national class of the British F3 championship in 2006 with fourteen wins.
The Inter-American award is organised by the Federacion Interamericana de Periodistas del Automovil, with votes coming from motor sport journalists from 18 countries in North, South and Latin America.
Gonzalez scored 67 votes, just one clear of Champ Car’s Sebastien Bourdais, who won a third US crown in 2006.
Massa and Bruno Senna ranked next.
“To be in front of drivers like Bourdais, Massa and Senna is great and is certainly very unexpected,” Gonzalez said.