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The Circuit

Massa determined to bounce back

  • Story Highlights
  • Felipe Massa was on course to win in Hungary until late Ferrari engine failure
  • Polesitter Lewis Hamilton suffered a puncture and wound up fifth for McLaren
  • Hamilton leads championship by five points from Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen
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Neale Graham
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LONDON, England (CNN) -- Felipe Massa has vowed to redouble his efforts to win the Formula One title in light of the last-gasp engine failure that cost him victory at the Hungarian Grand Prix.

Felipe Massa outbrakes polesitter Lewis Hamilton into the first corner of the Hungarian Grand Prix.

The Brazilian was coasting home after a sensational drive that saw him audaciously round polesitter Lewis Hamilton into the first corner.

After Hamilton's McLaren suffered a puncture, Massa was all but assured of victory until his Ferrari power plant expired three laps from the end.

"Unfortunately, racing can be a cruel sport. We had given it our all, but these things can happen. It happened completely without warning, without giving the slightest indication," said the crestfallen 27-year-old.

"I was managing the race because I had a good advantage over second place after Hamilton was delayed with a problem, and I was taking no risks whatsoever.

"Now we must not give up, but instead we must react quickly. There are seven races to go and 70 points up for grabs, which means there is plenty of time to make up ground.

"Our rivals are strong but we have shown we are at their level."

Ferrari had gone into the weekend denying their season was in crisis following a pair of bruising defeats by Hamilton in Britain and Germany.

Massa's flying start, from third on the grid, and his race pace proved that a much-improved McLaren were not in a league of their own at the Hungaroring, as many had forecast.

Hamilton was disappointed he was not able to give Massa more of a hard time before all hopes of a win -- ultimately claimed by his team-mate Heikki Kovalainen -- disappeared when his left-front tire gave out just after half distance.

He had to pit ahead of schedule and dropped to 12th before fighting his way up to fifth at the end.

"For sure, it was a surprise that we weren't as quick as we should have been," he told ITV.

"I was quick at the beginning, but then I just struggled with the tires and then I think at the end I had a problem with my car after the flat-spot.

"I feel I could have had a go at passing Massa, but the damaged tire halted my progress. But at least I scored four points and maintained my lead in the championship, so this result is not too bad for me."

Hamilton increased his championship lead to five points from Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen, who came home third. Massa slipped down to third in the standings and is now eight points shy of Hamilton.

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