Ferrari driver Felipe Massa says it’s up to Lewis Hamilton to clear the air between the two after they collided yet again in the Formula One Indian Grand Prix on Sunday.
The two have crashed into each other in three of the past four races. This time Massa was the guilty party and was handed a drive-through penalty from race stewards, though he insisted he did nothing wrong.
The pair exchanged angry words after crashing in Singapore and had not talked until just before Sunday’s race, when Hamilton stood beside Massa during a minute’s silence then wished the Brazilian good luck.
Massa said that counted for little, and said there will be ”nothing from me” to mend fences, leaving it up to the Briton to make the first approach.
”He was on my side and he just said, ‘Have a good race.’ Its not part of talking or whatever,” Massa said.
Hamilton had hoped their brief exchange after the minute’s silence could mend bridges between the two.
”There was a one minute silence before the race, I was standing next to Felipe,” Hamilton said. ”He’s not spoken to me for a long time but I made the effort, I put my arm round him and said good luck for the race.”
The collision happened on lap 24 of the 60-lap grand prix. Hamilton tried to pass on the inside of a left-hand corner, but Massa moved in sharply and Hamilton crashed into the Ferrari’s sidepod.
Massa was able to continue while Hamilton had to pit with a damaged front-wing.
”I tried to overtake but I tried to pull out of it as he didn’t give me any space, but we collided,” Hamilton said. ”It’s a disappointing day and my team deserves better.”
Massa was out of the race 10 laps later when he ran aggressively over a curb and snapped his front suspension – precisely the same mistake he made in qualifying.
He consulted stewards, who explained that he should have left more room for Hamilton, but he disagreed with their view.
”My view is that I broke later than him, I was in front, in a grippy area. I started to turn, could not see him and he touched me, so I don’t understand why I have the penalty,” Massa said.
”Am I supposed to back off and let him through?”
The 30-year-old said he bore no ill will toward Hamilton, but insisted it was the McLaren driver who had instigated all their crashes this season.
”I don’t have anything against him, nothing, zero,” Massa said. ”In all the incidents he touched my car. I did not do anything wrong.”
The other collisions between the two came at Monaco and Suzuka.
The major disagreement came in Singapore, when Hamilton botched an overtaking move and crashed into his Ferrari rival. After that race, Massa approached Hamilton in the media interview zone, clapped him on the arm and sarcastically said ”good job,” to which Hamilton replied ”don’t touch me, man.”