Felipe Massa believes that a united front presented by Formula 1’s drivers can exert power and influence over the sport.
Following a resurgence of the Grand Prix Drivers Association through the release a month ago of a letter criticising F1’s governance and the direction it is heading in, drivers have ramped up their efforts to display a united front.
The GPDA also meets on each race weekend on Friday to discuss whatever deserves to be on the agenda.
But eighteen drivers also met for dinner in China, and while the gathering was more about getting to know each other than discussing the future of the sport, the perception is that the community is decided on having its united voice being heard by F1’s power brokers
“We need to repeat this [dinner] more, we need to be united because we have a lot of power,” Massa says.
“Drivers together, united, we can push for a better show and a better sport. We can help. We want to be here to drive and be positive about F1.
“It was the dream for all the drivers that were together to be in F1. It is still the dream so we need to talk good about F1. We need to try to help F1 and I think we can do a lot to help and I think maybe F1 needs help.”
The GPDA’s suggestions released in its letter last month has been met with a fair amount of indifference by Bernie Ecclestone who brushed off the sport’s stars, labeling the group a bunch of ‘windbag’ F1 drivers merely acting as mouthpieces for their teams.
Massa however is determined to keep the community alive, and that regular casual gatherings will help the alliance gain strength and influence.
But the Brazilian also believes a regular assembly with his colleagues is just a good way to get to know each other and have a good time.
“We need to try to be close between the drivers. Maybe we can change a bit the mentality that is negative in F1 that nobody sees each other in the paddock.
“Everyone is stuck inside their room or in meetings and everything. We race together, but not, just on the track.
“We had a lot of fun and you also see things that maybe you don’t know because you don’t know the other drivers. You’re talking, having fun and you have a different feeling about people you don’t really know.”
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