29 May 2010
Friday press conference - Turkish GP - Pt.2
Team principals: Ross Brawn (Mercedes), Stefano Domenicali (Ferrari), Adam Parr (Williams), Franz Tost (Toro Rosso)
Questions from the floor
Q: (Frederic Ferret – l'Equipe)
Two questions for Ross: the first is on the F-duct. Are you happy with it today, and will you use it in the race? And the second is about Nico Rosberg. He suffered in Barcelona with the new pieces on the car. Did you find why he was suffering and what did you do to make him more comfortable?
The F-duct for us is an on-going project. Having just said that we shouldn't test, we're crying out for some testing to get the F-duct sorted out because undoubtedly McLaren were very smart in getting their system working over the winter and for everyone who is trying to get their systems to work it's a massive challenge. So we're not where we want to be with the F-duct but at each race we make a little step forward.
I don't truly have an answer for what happened with Nico in Barcelona, why we didn't find the time. He's driving the car here, which is the long wheelbase car and he's reasonably happy with it. You do get races where it doesn't quite come together and so no, there isn't a black and white answer for Barcelona but he's reasonably happy with the car here.
Q: (Joe Saward – Grand Prix Special)
Given what you've just been saying about the economy and the need to be careful, you're talking about going to twenty races and there's even talk of going beyond that to maybe 24. How do these elements combine? More races don't cost you more money?
Normally you earn money doing the races. Tests cost money, because you don't get anything.
There's an agreement with Bernie that the more races we do the more money the teams get, so we've got to make sure that the money we get is more than the money we spend, which is not easy with Bernie.
The costs of an F1 team are largely fixed as well. All the design and most of the manufacturing is fixed. I don't think drivers get more money per race and in fact they generally complain about how little driving they do. If the races are in the right places at the right times on the right terms, then it should improve our income.
To be clear, we're all delighted that they're increasing the number of races. We just need to manage the situation properly because especially the races which are coming up, they're great for Formula One, so we will support them 100 percent. There are consumables involved: we use more engines, we use more brakes, we use things like that. We've got flights, we've got hotels but as Adam said, a lot of the core costs are spent before you even go to the first race.
I hope it's not 24 to be honest because I always thought about twenty. But that's my personal view. I like other things. Anyway, I don't know if we've discussed 24 but if there's more money, as we said, it's good. For me, twenty is a good number.
Q: (Joe Saward – Grand Prix Special)
Is anybody interested in going over twenty?
I think we've talked about it in the context of floating the idea of changing the weekend format, if that were possible. Just to go to 24 races with the long weekend like we have now would be very difficult logistically. Maybe in the context of a different structure for the weekend I think it might be interesting.
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