The Secret Life of Felipe Massa 01 Nov 2010
Last year Felipe Massas life - and his his fight for it - was the subject of intense media scrutiny as he recovered from his near-fatal qualifying accident in Hungary. Despite that, the much-liked Brazilian remains one of the more private personalities on the grid. Ahead of his home race this weekend, we decided to find out a little more on Felipe, including his love of football, his fear of heights, his hankering for a tattoo, and his friendship with a certain guitar god
Q: Are you a plan-B kind of guy?
Felipe Massa: Sometimes. You always try to do the right thing, but then many times there is a fight inside you - some sort of angel and the devil scenario. But only sometimes!
Q: Driving an F1 car aside, what is your favourite buzz?
FM: Doing the job that we are doing is so different almost every day, as you are confronted with so many new situations that there is already a high buzz level. In terms of hobbies: football. I like to play football. If you ask me what I prefer, then it is clearly racing, but football comes very close.
Q: Whom do you most look forward to seeing when you arrive in the paddock on a Thursday?
FM: I have so many friends in the paddock and that is a nice feeling. It gives me pleasures. New updates on the car? You are looking forward to that every single day - and you always want more!
Q: Who is your dream date?
FM: I have already met a huge number of outstanding people - I am quite happy with this situation.
Q: Which film last made you cry?
FM: No movies. The last time I cried was when I was reading Eric Claptons book when he was writing about how he lost his son. Eric is a good friend of mine. Reading this part of his book was a real shock, thinking that this tragedy happened to somebody you know very well. When it comes to films that I like, I would say 24. Its TV, but its my favourite.
Q: What are you afraid of - and why?
FM: I am afraid of heights. Not in planes, but when I go up high and look down - thats scary. Bungee jumping - you will never see me doing that.
Q: What was the last book you read?
FM: The Eric Clapton autobiography My Life.
Q: What is your favourite way to relax?
FM: Stay home and dont do anything. Maybe watching a bit of TV, but doing nothing is the best way to relax.
Q: Five things that you hate?
FM: Not sure if I can manage five. Lets start. People that lie. Fake people. Some small crawling animals with many legs - and dangerous animals. Travelling during the day - during the night is very easy for me because I fall asleep easily.
Q: Have you ever - or would you ever - dye your hair?
FM: I have done when I was younger. I had it a bit lighter, but it didnt look good so I never made another attempt.
Q: Do you have any tattoos or piercings?
FM: Piercings, no. Tattoos, maybe someday, though I am already 29 and that is a bit beyond the age when you do those things. But I like tattoos.
Q: What did teachers say about you in your school report?
FM: I was a good kid, but terrible at the same time. Not very organized and joking all the time. I was always sitting in the back, never in the front. A bit of an issue boy.
Q: Who were your childhood heroes?
FM: My father when I was a kid. Later also Pele.
Q: Do you have any guilty pleasures?
FM: I am sure I have, but I dont remember right now (laughs)
Q: Do you collect anything?
FM: Many things. I love watches - my collection is something around 50 pieces.
Q: What do you miss most about home when you are on the road?
FM: My family, my son. They accompany me many times, but not always and then I miss them terribly.
Q: What was your worst buy?
FM: Cannot remember - so it obviously wasnt such a bad buy!
Q: How do you take your coffee?
FM: Very Italian. Short and strong.
Q: Your ideal non-race Sunday morning?
Q: What was the first car or machine that you drove?
FM: I had a 50cc motocross bike when I was six years-old. That was fantastic. But I think it was not so fantastic for my mum because I was really crazy with this machine. I remember one time I had 35 bruises on my body! Guess I was not the easiest son.
Q: What was the most embarrassing mistake that youve made?
FM: I remember that very well. My friends and I sneaked to the school building one night and put a lock on the front door. The next morning everybody had to wait outside - that was just unbelievable. My reward was that I was not allowed to go to school for several days.
Q: What is the best thing that you can cook?
FM: I am not a great cook. I would say pasta. That is very easy.
Q: When was the last time you were really furious?
FM: I cannot say.
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