Felipe Massa says that the 2017 cars brought a positive change, as it moved Formula 1 away from "grandmother" driving. The 2017 cars were designed to go much faster through the corners, with a shake-up in the aerodynamic regulations.
The veteran Brazilian retired from the sport for a second time last month, and has spoken out in praise of the cars that raced this year. He likened the cars to the 2006-08 machines, in which he claimed all 11 of his F1 victories.
"Definitely I will remember that it [the 2017 car] is nice to drive," Massa said. "When you're just driving the car it is quite a nice feeling for the driver in terms of the G-force and the physicality. I think to do a perfect lap in these cars you need to be a proper driver, not like in the past where the tyres were going away or you needed to drive like a grandmother.
"Now you need to drive like a driver. It's similar to maybe 2006, '07 and '08 (or even before that time. You have the car ready to accept everything so the driver really needs to risk and drive in a proper, aggressive direction."
One of the major criticisms that emerged from the revamped regulations was the lack of overtaking. Drivers found it much more difficult to follow a car in front, with statistics showing that overtaking as a whole was down by 47% from 2016. Massa believes that work needs to be done to improve that area.
"I think the only thing that needs to be changed is to understand how to follow other cars a bit better," Massa stated. "[You can have] as much downforce as we have but you need air. If you don't have air because you have a car in front you lose downforce, you lose grip.
"So definitely for overtaking, if Liberty can understand how to improve the cars on the floor or different things to manage to be able to follow cars a little bit closer it would be good for the show."
Bahrain International Circuit - Winter testing
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