Felipe Massa said that he could not find the right balance on his Ferrari during qualifying and that the car was "difficult to drive" as he was only able to secure seventh on the grid for his home grand prix.

12916 - Car 'difficult to drive' for Massa

Massa struggled throughout the session, having to use two sets of the soft tyre to get through the second part of qualifying. That set him back for the top ten shootout, and he was just edged out by Nico Rosberg for sixth while Adrian Sutil was only 0.2s further back in eighth. Massa admitted he was disappointed with the result, but said that the car made any further progress tough.

"I was expecting more from this final qualifying of the year and I definitely cannot be happy with this seventh place," Massa said. "Unfortunately, we were unable to find the right balance throughout the weekend. In some corners I was locking up the front and in the slower ones I suffered with understeer, in others I lacked traction: all in all, the car was rather difficult to drive.

"On top of that, it was a rather complicated day. I had to use two sets of Softs in Q2 and I paid for that in Q3, as I could only do one run. Tomorrow it's supposed to rain so the situation could change. It's difficult to make predictions on the relative strengths: this year in the wet, sometimes we have seen a very strong Red Bull, other times McLaren have been very quick, but it's also true that anything can happen in these conditions. The important thing is to be prepared for all situations."

Despite the difficult session, Massa's target of finishing in the top three has not been altered.

"For me, it's always a fantastic feeling racing at this track, in front of my amazing home crowd: I will try my all to do well and to finally make it onto the podium at the end of such a difficult year. It would be a nice way to end my tenth season in Formula 1 and to celebrate in a worthy manner my hundredth race with Scuderia Ferrari."