Having partnered only some of the greatest drivers of this era, Felipe Massa should know a thing or two about the abilities of these drivers. He reckons that Fernando Alonso is a better driver than even 7-times World Champion Michael Schumacher.
Felipe Massa has showered high praise on Fernando Alonso by describing the Spaniard as the most “complete” team-mate he has faced in his time at Ferrari.
It was confirmed earlier this week that after eight seasons Massa will leave Ferrari at the end of the current campaign to make way for the returning Kimi Raikkonen, who he himself was team-mate to at Maranello in 2007-2009.
In addition to partnering past title winners Alonso and Raikkonen, Massa also raced alongside seven-times World Champion Michael Schumacher during his first season in a race seat at Maranello in 2006, but the Brazilian has admitted it is his team-mate of the last four seasons who has proved the most formidable.
Speaking in an interview with Sky Sports F1′s Martin Brundle conducted before his impending departure from Ferrari was confirmed, Massa said: “I’ve always had very strong team-mates. I always learnt that you need to be perfect because if you’re not perfect they will be in front of you.
“For sure I’ve had some tough times as well with strong team-mates. The one was suffering more [against] was Alonso. I think maybe he’s more complete.
“Schumacher was very, very good. He was amazing and a very complete driver as well. But I think maybe Alonso is even more perfect.”
Massa will leave his long-time home at the end of the season having established himself as the second-longest serving Ferrari driver in history, while his 11 victories places him joint fourth alongside Alonso on the team’s all-time victory list.
But asked if he was completely satisfied with what he had achieved in his decade-long F1 career to date, the 32-year-old replied: “No, I think it’s impossible to be. I think when you’re happy with everything you did, you stop. So I’m not happy.
“I want more. I want to win more races; I want to make more pole positions. So when you’re not happy you need to try and carry on and try to do more.”
With Tuesday’s subsequent news meaning the Brazilian’s Ferrari career now has just seven races to run, Massa has been linked with the seat currently occupied by Raikkonen at Lotus for 2014, although Nico Hulkenberg is considered the favourite for the drive, or a return to Sauber.