Felipe Massa on Saturday announced he will retire from Formula 1 at the end of the 2017 season.
It is the second time in less than two years the Williams driver has made the announcement, though this time he really means it.
After first announcing his retirement in September 2016, Massa stayed on at the request of Williams to help provide experience for the team which had just signed rookie driver Lance Stroll.
“As everyone knows, after announcing my retirement from Formula 1 last year, I agreed to return this season to help Williams when the call came,” Massa said. “I have now enjoyed four great years with the team, but my career in Formula 1 will finally come to an end this season.”
Massa started racing in F1 in 2002, as a driver for Sauber. He joined Ferrari in 2006, racing alongside Michael Schumacher who was a mentor to him, and in 2014 he joined Williams where he’s been ever since. Massa’s has been an eventful, bittersweet career.
In 2008 he came close to securing the world championship, only to have it taken away by Lewis Hamilton who crossed the line of the final race of the season high enough to earn one extra point and take home the title.
In 2009, during qualifying for the Hungarian Grand Prix, his helmet was struck by a flying suspension spring that detached from a car driven by Rubens Barrichello, causing serious injury. Despite this, Massa was back racing for Ferrari the next season.
He joined his current team Williams for the 2014 season though hasn’t managed to win a race since then. In his F1 career, he has 11 wins to his name. His last race will be the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on November 26.
“I would also like to add a huge thank you to all of the fans who have been incredibly supportive and passionate over the years,” Massa said. “I take so many great memories with me as I prepare for my final two races in Brazil and Abu Dhabi, and although they will be emotional, I am looking forward to ending on a high note and preparing for a new chapter in my career.”
Williams will announce its 2018 driver lineup at a later date.