Former Scuderia Ferrari driver Felipe Massa wanted to praise Charles Leclerc. In fact, the Brazilian underlined the qualities of the current Ferrari Monegasque driver, admitting that from his point of view, Charles Leclerc can be considered Max Verstappen’s main rival for the Formula 1 title, despite the fact that the Ferrari SF-23 challenger does not seem able to fight against the Red Bull RB19 in this start of the 2023 Formula 1 season.
Felipe Massa believes that Sergio Perez, winner of the last race held two weeks ago on the fast street circuit of Jeddah, may not be able to keep up with his teammate over the distance of a full season.
The former Prancing Horse driver, who raced for the Maranello team from 2006 to 2013, also believes that a possible driver who could challenge for the Formula 1 world championships in the next few years is George Russell who in Mercedes has shown that he can keep up with his more famous and successful teammate Lewis Hamilton. However, at this moment neither Ferrari nor Mercedes can hope to come close to Max Verstappen based on what could be seen in the first two races of the season:
“Like Max and Lewis, Charles is an exceptional driver” – said Felipe Massa, interviewed by the German tabloid newspaper BILD – “Currently he is the biggest challenger for the title against Red Bull. Their second driver, Sergio Pérez, is not consistent enough. Just like Carlos Sainz at Ferrari. George Russell could be a title contender for years to come. We must not forget that last year, in his first season with Mercedes, he finished ahead of Lewis in the World Championship. An incredible result. Before that, only Nico Rosberg had succeeded in 2016. George is a great driver.” – Former Scuderia Ferrari driver Felipe Massa pointed out.
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