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Friday press conference - Singapore GP - Pt.1.

Team principals: Stefano Domenicali (Ferrari), Norbert Haug (Mercedes), Sam Michael (Williams), Mario Theissen (BMW Sauber)

Press conference

A question to you all. Can you tell us how the engine situation is in your team? It is getting to that critical time of the year, just four races to go, and everybody is wondering how many engines everybody has got.

Sam Michael:
From our point of view it is quite okay. We have not had any failures so far this year, so we are managing our pool of eight between each driver and so far we are on schedule not to use any new engines. That can always change in the next few practice or race sessions, but at this stage it has worked out well. It is a manageable thing. You can handle probably one failure but once you get more than one, it becomes very tricky. You either have to reduce practice mileage or fit a new engine, but we are fine.

Mario Theissen:
We are borderline after the two unexpected engine failures – fresh engine failures – we had recently. We have one fresh engine for each car for the final four races and apparently we have never done four races with one engine on the track. On the dyno it would work, but we have to see now where we are. Apparently we have some mileage left on used engines to cover the Fridays.

So it is a little bit of management?

Yes, but it will be tight. We are not sure if we get to Abu Dhabi with this engine, so we will see. Maybe we will have to pull a ninth engine.

Norbert, you have got about six cars to deal with.

Norbert Haug:
We are fine so far. I hope it stays like that but as my colleagues already pointed out this can happen very quickly and if you have one small problem it will happen. I think it is absolutely important not to get complacent and have respect in front of the work you have to do. So far so good and I would say thank you to the guys in Brixsworth and Stuttgart. They did a fantastic job so far but again it is still quite a way to go and I hope we can continue this trend.

Stefano Domenicali:
We have two engines for the next four races for each driver but I can really cut and paste what Norbert and Sam said. You cannot be complacent but this is the situation now and we need to see how the situation will evolve, but two for each driver.

Another question to all of you. Can you give us a little feedback on how the session went and how the drivers have reacted to the changes to the circuit?

It was quite okay. It was very dusty to start with. They spent a lot of time cleaning the track last year and they didn't do that this year. That first session was ramping up quite a bit. I think in terms of lap time there have been three corners that have changed on the track. Out of those three corners we think it is possibly going to slow the lap time down by about two seconds. P1 last year we were in mid-46s straight away and qualifying was 44.0, so this year it is about four seconds slower in the first session and maybe two-and-a-half seconds slower in P2 now, so it is definitely a slower track because of the lay-out changes. In terms of our programme everything went okay. We had some new aero parts on the car. A new front wing and rear wing and some diffuser modifications. All that checked out okay and we just did our homework for the race.


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