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Felipe Massa will retire from Formula One for good at the end of the 2017 season

The Williams driver, who announced his retirement last year only to return for one more campaign, will end his racing career after the final two races of the season.

The Brazilian said in a statement: "As everyone knows, after announcing my retirement from Formula One last year, I agreed to return this season to help Williams when the call came.

"I have now enjoyed four great years with the team, but my career in Formula One will finally come to an end this season."

The 36-year-old added: "Once more, I would like to say a big thank you to everyone who has supported me throughout this time: my wife and my father, my whole family, my manager Nicolas and all my friends, colleagues and sponsors.

"I would also like to add a huge thank you to all of the fans who have been incredibly supportive and passionate over the years. I take so many great memories with me as I prepare for my final two races in Brazil and Abu Dhabi, and although they will be emotional, I am looking forward to ending on a high note and preparing for a new chapter in my career."

Massa, who as a Ferrari driver finished second by a single point to Lewis Hamilton in the 2008 World Championship, sits in 11th place in the current drivers' standings.

He initially announced his retirement in Italy last year and was given an emotional send-off at his home race in Brazil and then the final grand prix of the season in Abu Dhabi, only to make a U-turn when Valtteri Bottas moved to Mercedes to replace Nico Rosberg in the wake of the German's shock retirement.

News of Massa's second retirement was widely expected.

Claire Williams, deputy team principal at Williams, said: "I would like to thank Felipe for all he has done for the team over the last four years.

"It has been an absolute pleasure to work with him. We are especially grateful that he agreed to postpone his retirement from Formula One for a year, after Valtteri joined Mercedes, which demonstrated the depth of the relationship we built during our time together.

"We appreciate that it wasn't an easy decision for him to return, after having such an emotional send-off at the end of last year. On behalf of Sir Frank, and all the team, we give our very best wishes to Felipe for the future."

Williams said in the statement they would announce their 2018 driver line-up in due course.

Paul Di Resta and Robert Kubica have both tested for Williams recently as the British team decide who will replace Massa and partner Lance Stroll next term.

Daniil Kvyat, recently axed by Toro Rosso, is also understood to be in the frame.

A decision is not expected until after the final race of the season in Abu Dhabi on November 26.


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