Massa accepts early return unlikely

Convalescing Ferrari driver Felipe Massa concedes his chances of making a return to race action this season are "very, very low".

The Brazilian has been sidelined since fracturing his skull in an incident in qualifying for July's Hungarian Grand Prix but had hoped to be fit to take part in the season finale in Abu Dhabi on 1 November.

It now appears he and his bosses at Maranello have elected to err on the side of caution, meaning understudy Giancarlo Fisichella will remain at the wheel of Massa's F60 for the remainder of the campaign.

"I hope I'll be back soon but I also know the best thing is that I'm coming back 100% at the start of the next season," Massa told Ferrari's official website.

"My dream would be to race in Abu Dhabi. But the possibility is really, really low."

After completing two days in the Ferrari simulator this week, the 28-year-old is scheduled to drive a 2007-spec car on Monday - after undergoing a medical check-up in Paris later today, with the FIA in attendance.

Although in-season testing is banned, Massa has been granted permission to drive the two-year-old Ferrari, fitted with GP2 tyres.

"I'll go to Paris for some medical check-ups at the FIA and on Monday, if the weather is fine, I should finally be behind the wheel of a Formula 1 single-seater," he said.

"I hope I can do many miles and do well, not only in terms of performance but also as far as constant lap times are concerned.

"I'm confident and I think there won't be any problems. It's true that a Formula One vibrates a lot and there is lots of physical stress, but I'm used to it."

Following Monday's test Massa will turn his attentions to building his sharpness for the start of the 2010 season, when with a new car and new team-mate in Fernando Alonso he will be bidding to capture his maiden world title.

"I'm sure that with Alonso we'll form a great team and we'll work together very well. The goal will be very simple - winning," Massa added.

"I saw the model of the new car in the wind tunnel - it's different from the actual one, also because there will be new rules. Let's hope it will be fast."