With eight years in Karts before moving to racing in cars, Felipe finished 5th in the Brazilian Formula Chevrolet Championship in 1998. In 1999 he won the series – moving to Europe in 2000. He won the Italian and European Formula Renault, even though he missed two of the Italian Formula Renault races. Moving to F3000 in 2001, he won six races of eight; enough to claim the title. This success led to his F1 debut season in 2002 for Sauber.
Making many mistakes and errors throughout the season, he failed to get a place in Sauber the following year. Instead, he became test driver for Ferrari before moving back to Sauber in 2004. He scored points regularly with a best finish of 4th. Alongside former champion Jacques Villeneuve in 2005 he consistently outperformed his experienced teammate. This performance was enough to secure a seat at Ferrari in 2006. With Schumacher as his teammate, he was the number 2 driver, but still won two races and finished 3rd overall in the Championship.
After Schumacher’s retirement at the end of the 2006 season, Massa was partnered with Raikkonen in 2007. The season started positively as Massa scored 2 wins out of 4 races. However he only claimed one more win in the season. Despite this, he helped the team in winning both the Constructor’s and Driver’s Championship.
He won 6 races and got 6 poles in the 2008 season but narrowly missed out on the 2008 title to Lewis Hamilton by one point. After showing supreme speed and talent in 2008, the 2009 season started badly. One podium in round nine was then followed by serious accident in qualifying in Hungry. Massa suffered from a fractured skull and was out of F1 for the whole season.
Alonso was signed for Ferrari alongside Massa in 2010. Felipe got 5 podiums in the season. In Hockenheim, he controversially was told to let teammate Alonso to overtake- to help in Fernando’s title challenge. Consistantly outperformed by double-champion Alonso in 2011 and 2012, he risked losing his race seat for Ferrari.
2013 was his last season in Ferrari – after 8 consecutive seasons – he scored points regularly and out-performed Alonso in qualifying. A move to Williams in 2014 saw improved results. Massa joined Valtteri Bottas in an improving team. With Mercedes-Powered engines, the Williams benefitted from great straight-line speed. He was on the podium twice but a series of accidents, most of which not his fault, prevented him from a higher overall position.