Felipe Massa completed a successful karting comeback by adding victory in the Granja Viana 500-mile enduro to his heat win in last week's International Challenge of Go-Kart Champions.
Ferrari Formula 1 driver Massa was joined by Renault test driver Lucas di Grassi and Stock Car Light frontrunner Julio Campos for yesterday's 500-mile race. The trio took the lead early on and were able to stay ahead for the majority of the distance, only being headed during pit stops.
It was the first time Massa had won the Granja Viana since he was part of the victorious team in the inaugural event in 1997, at the age of 16. Campos – then 15 years old – was also part of the winning driver lineup that year.
"I think we got what we deserved, as we took the lead right from the start," said Massa. "We managed to set up a strong team, whose pace all over the race was quite similar.
"I have to thank our team manager Renato Marlia, who gave us a perfect kart, and my mates di Grassi and Campos. They did very well, saving the equipment and not putting a wheel wrong during the entire race."
Massa dedicated the win to his son Felipinho, who was born earlier this week. He added that his karting successes in the past seven days had been an ideal way to return to racing following the head injuries he suffered during qualifying for the Hungarian Grand Prix in July.
"I spent a huge amount of time in front of my TV set, just watching Formula 1 and dreaming about the moment to come back," said Massa.
"This has been a nice recovery, with my victory in the second heat of the International Challenge of Go-Kart Champions last week in Florianopolis and now with this result at Granja Viana, an ever-challenging long and tough competition."
Former F1 driver Ricardo Zonta was part of the second-placed lineup, finishing two laps down on Massa, di Grassi and Campos, while eight-time Granja Viana winners Rubens Barrichello and Tony Kanaan were among the drivers of the third-placed kart.