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Massa upbeat after better Friday for Williams

Felipe Massa, Williams, Italian Grand Prix
© XPB 

Felipe Massa was feeling a lot happier with life this week, after Williams enjoyed a much better Friday session than they have in recent outings.

Last week the team suffered a number of setbacks in practice that comrpomised the rest of the race weekend. But the two free practice sessions at Monza proved much smoother for both Massa and his team mate Lance Stroll.

"It was a much better Friday than we’ve had in the last few races," said Massa after the end of the day's track activity.

"I’m really optimistic that the car can be more competitive here in Monza compared with how it was in the last races.

"We tried some different bodywork options and different wings. Plus we managed a lot of laps on the tyres," he added. "I really hope everything comes together to have a much better weekend."

Stroll did have a spin exiting the second Lesmo in the afternoon, but his FW40 was unscathed.

"I had a good day on my side, but spun on my good lap in FP2," he confirmed. "[That] was a bit frustrating, and I didn’t get to put my lap time on the board with the supersofts."

Stroll's best lap of the day was 1:23.403s, half a second off his more experienced team mate. He expected to do better on Saturday.

"Everything is feeling good and hopefully we will say the same tomorrow," he said. "I think we can be very close to Q3, if not in it.

"We just have to make sure everything works out and we will see what happens," he added.

Williams' chief technical officer Paddy Lowe praised Stroll for learning the formidable Monza track so quickly. He said that both drivers were happy with the balance of the race car.

"We managed to run our whole programme in FP1 and FP2 without any issues, running a number of different aerodynamic configurations," he said. "The pace for both drivers looks to be in reasonable shape for qualifying and the race.

"Lance flat-spotted his supersoft tyre in FP2 so he couldn’t do his long run on that tyre, concentrating on the soft instead. But apart from that everything was normal.

"We’ve had some difficult Fridays in the last few races, so it’s nice to get one where things have gone to plan!"

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