Massa: Eighth 'like a victory' for Williams
29 August 2017 – Felipe Massa says that his eighth-place finish at the Belgian Grand Prix "felt like a victory" for himself and Williams after a tough start to the race weekend.
Massa crashed heavily just 15 minutes into the opening session at Spa-Francorchamps, forcing a chassis change that ruled him out of second practice.
He returned to action on Saturday, but Williams lacked pace and suffered a third double Q1 exit in four events, with Massa taking 16th, and Lance Stroll ending up 18th.
However, in the race, Massa enjoyed a change of fortune, working his way up to eighth by the time of his first pit-stop, which he maintained after the Safety Car.
"I'm very happy with the race, it was like a victory," said Massa.
"Great start, great overtakes, good pace for the car we struggled with [in qualifying], so I'm really happy and also to be able to keep the cars behind at the end.
"I know eighth place is not a nice position, looking at everything I have achieved in my career, but the way I drove the car and the way I drove in this race, it was definitely like a victory and I'm so happy.
"For sure there's a lot to understand and improve in the car, like what wasn't working in the last two races, but I'm happy with the perfect race I had."
Williams technical chief Paddy Lowe also paid tribute to Massa.
"Congratulations to Felipe for a great race and four points," he said.
"After his difficulties through the last month with missing the race in Hungary, it is great that he could come back to such a challenging circuit and deliver a strong result for the team.
"I am sure no one is happier about that than he is."
Stroll finished 11th in the other Williams, 10 seconds shy of a point.