Felipe Massa said Ferrari's F2012 performed better than expected in Monaco after setting the third fastest time in practice on Thursday.

14772 - Massa encouraged by F2012

Despite mixed conditions Massa was competitive all day, finishing the morning in sixth place and setting the third fastest time in the second practice session. Although rain limited running in the afternoon Massa described the day as "positive" and admitted that the car's traction had been stronger than he was expecting.

"We weren't able to do as much running as we would have liked because of the light rain that fell this afternoon, but all the same, I am happy with the way things went," Massa said. "The car seemed to me to be okay right from the start of the first session, with a good balance in all conditions and with slightly better traction than we had expected. Even when we ran the Intermediates in the final part of the second session, the feeling was still positive."

Massa also said that predicting the relative competitiveness of the field was nigh on impossible, but felt Ferrari's work ahead of qualifying would only be a case of fine tuning.

"As for the tyres, we didn't even fit the Supersoft, therefore we can't say anything about their behaviour, while the Softs worked well, also in terms of their degradation. Sure, there is still plenty of work to do to fine tune all the set-up details, but we have an extra day to think about what to do to improve in this area. It's hard to make predictions about qualifying and, even more so for the race, but definitely we can say the first day of free practice can be considered a positive one."