Massa Baffled by Sauber Contract Snub

Brazilian Felipe Massa said that he is at a loss regarding his Sauber team's decision not to renew his contract for the 2003 season.

Massa Baffled by Sauber Contract Snub

Brazilian Felipe Massa said that he is at a loss regarding his Sauber team's decision not to renew his contract for the 2003 season.

"I don't know," replied Massa when asked why he hasn't been chosen to drive for Sauber next year. "Actually I think I've done a good job this year, my first year. I'm eleventh in the Championship with four races to finish and I hope to do my best and to score maybe more points.

"As for my future, I hope to find a solution."

21-year old Massa, making his Formula One debut this year with the Swiss squad, has enjoyed a rather impressive season, matching the pace of his highly-rated teammate Nick Heidfeld despite not having competed at most of the circuits before this year.

The Brazilian has scored four points so far in 2002, but last weekend the team announced that veteran German Heinz-Harald Frentzen would return to Sauber next season, replacing Massa alongside Heidfeld, who will completed his third year with the Hinwil-based outfit.

Team boss Peter Sauber has offered Massa a testing role for the 2003 season, but the young rookie said today in Belgium that his main priority was to continue racing.

"I think for me the most important thing is to keep going in the race, I think that's really important for me," he said. "I'm young, I think I can learn a lot in races but for sure it's also a good opportunity to stay but now we try to study and to see what's the best for me."

Massa also dismissed speculation that he had fallen out with team boss Peter Sauber after being forced to give up his place to teammate Nick Heidfeld at the German Grand Prix at the end of July.

"Actually I have a relatively good relationship with Peter," he said."A lot of people said I was fighting with him. It's absolutely not true."

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