Massa getting help from ‘big brother’ Schumacher in title race

Brit Lewis Hamilton’s F1 title ambitions could be thwarted by a German who is no stranger to seeing off British competitors.

Seven-times world champion Michael Schumacher is advising Ferrari’s Felipe Massa on driving matters and the team is reaping the rewards of being able to tap such a wealth of experience.

Schumacher works in an advisory role with Ferrari and has been credited with putting more drive and ambition into the self-effacing, eager-to-please Massa’s racing.

"He’s not really a coach – he’s like a big brother," Massa was quoted in the Times as saying.

Massa’s route to the top of the sport has been less meteoric than Hamilton’s. His debut season in 2002 was a bit of disaster but since then he has sneaked up the sport’s pecking order to win the respect of the teams he has raced for.

Hamilton could find out by season’s end that Massa’s happy-go-lucky exterior hides a core of steel.

Comments such as "my clear opinion is that Lewis was not patient" (when asked by the Times whether Hamilton should have been penalised for cutting a corner in the Belgian Grand Prix) show that the Brazilian driver is ready to overtake his rival (legally of course).

Written by James Christie

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