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Page last updated at 11:47 GMT, Tuesday, 19 May 2009 12:47 UK

Fighting Massa eyes Monaco podium

Venue: Monte Carlo Dates: 21-24 May (no action on Friday 22) Coverage: Live coverage of Thursday's practice sessions, Saturday's qualifying sessions and Sunday's race across BBC TV, radio and online. Find complete listings here

Felipe Massa
Massa lost out on the 2008 world title to McLaren's Lewis Hamilton by one point

Felipe Massa believes Ferrari will be back on the podium at Sunday's Monaco Grand Prix as they bid to recover from their worst start to a season.

The best result so far in a disastrous 2009 for the constructors' champions was Massa's sixth in Spain, where the Brazilian spotted "some steps forward".

"I really think Monaco can be the turning point in our season," he said.

"I believe in the first podium of the season. After a start to the season we didn't expect, we've improved a lot."

Ferrari have been beset by problems this year with a number of other teams - such as Brawn GP, Red Bull and Toyota - forging ahead on the track thanks to new Formula 1 regulations which the reigning constructors' champions have struggled to adapt to.

After the Spanish GP I read that I've raised the white flag for this season - this is not the case and I want that to be clear

Felipe Massa

Off the track, they have threatened to quit the sport over the budget cap and two-tier championship proposed by governing body, the FIA, and have now filed an injunction to block the move.

Even Massa's first points of the season in Spain last time out were tinged with regret - running in fourth, he was ordered to slow down during the closing stages to conserve fuel as he faced the threat of running out.

But the Brazilian, whose team-mate Kimi Raikkonnen finished a season-best sixth in Bahrain, insists they can turn their season around.

"After the Spanish GP I read that I've raised the white flag for this season - this is not the case and I want that to be clear," added Massa, who just missed out on the title last year.

"Obviously the situation in the championship is very difficult, and it is quite realistic to say that catching up seems to be almost impossible, but that doesn't mean we've given up."

Massa trails Brawn's championship leader Jenson Button by 38 points but is adamant Ferrari will fight until the end of the season.


"We'll continue working on the car and will give it our all to win races and finish the championship the best way possible.

"We showed last year we're not a team that gives up when there are negative results.

"I will fight and push with the whole team to improve things race by race.

"The time for a comeback always comes, and I'm certain it will - today more than ever - both in the constructors' and drivers' championships."

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see also
F1 chiefs stay firm on budget cap
15 May 09 |  Formula 1
Renault join F1 pull-out threat
13 May 09 |  Formula 1
Ferrari issue F1 quit ultimatum
12 May 09 |  Formula 1
Toyota threaten pull-out from F1
10 May 09 |  Formula 1
Button wins as Brawn GP dominate
10 May 09 |  Formula 1
Wary Raikkonen ponders F1 future
09 May 09 |  Formula 1
Ferrari problems frustrate Massa
05 Apr 09 |  Formula 1
Massa positive about new Ferrari
13 Jan 09 |  Formula 1
Felipe Massa
21 Jul 09 |  Drivers & Teams

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