It seems clear now that Felipe Massa, in the best of circumstances, is likely miss a minimum of three races, if not the rest of the season. Who does Ferrari have to fill in for Felipe?
Ferrari's back up drivers are Luca Badoer and Marc Gene, two great test drivers who have not, in their previous Formula 1 careers, shown to be especially successful racers. Badoer has 56 F1 starts, no points, his last race was in 1999. Marc Gene had 36 F1 races and scored 5 points, his last race was in 2004. Of the two, Gene is the obvious choice.
There is another name that is bound to come up, it's inevitable. He retired at the end of 2006 and has enjoyed some success in Formula 1...
It's going to come up, Schumacher coming back to help his team in a pinch. It may also be the thing to revitalize this rather negative F1 season, a story line that must make Bernie Ecclestone, circuit owners and network executives vibrate at night.
Massa's condition will also determine the diver's market, throwing everything up in the air. I'm sure driver's managers are recomputing all their strategies at this point and waiting anxiously on Massa's prognosis.
It's a cold world in F1.