Ferrari’s Felipe Massa has claimed his life-threatening injury sustained in qualifying for the Hungarian grand prix will not affect his ability to compete in Formula One.
The Brazilian is still recovering from a fractured skull after was hit by a spring from Rubens Barrichello’s car at high-speed back in July. Massa is adamant that getting back behind the cockpit is the only thing he wants to do.
“For me, the worst thing that happened was not being able to race,” he told The Guardian. “If you can't drive that's terrible. But my wife has already asked me, at least 10 times, 'Are you sure you don't feel any doubts or worries?' Always, I say, 'No - because this is what I like to do.'
"If I don't drive then I am not the same person. Ever since I was a small boy this is my life. This is what I like to do. So I really hope, and expect, nothing will change inside of me when I go back into the car and start pushing myself to the maximum again."
When asked if there had not been a moment during his recovery when he had hesitated about coming back, Massa said: "No. For my family it was very difficult because they followed everything and went through a lot. But for me it was less than that.
"As soon as it happened I was unconscious and three days later I woke up. In hospital I saw nothing of the accident. It was just Hungarian television channels. I only heard what they said happened to me. And for me this was strange - can a spring from another car really do this to a bone in my head?
"I first saw it when I got home on television - just like you. But I had other accidents that disturbed me a lot more. When I lost the brakes in Monaco in 2002 it was a huge crash. And I crashed twice in Barcelona because I had a problem with my suspension - and that was an accident that made me think.
"But this accident in Hungary is like something I never even saw. So my wife was only asking gentle questions, like, 'You don't think maybe... ?' And I say, 'No, I am racing again.' My mother also knows me a lot. Sometimes she is looking at me and thinking but she knows not to ask."
Massa underwent further surgery on Monday to place a titanium plate in his skull to strengthen it for a racing return.
He is expected to make his first appearance at a race at his home grand prix in Brazil next month.
"It will be difficult to watch it, but I will be there,” said Massa.