Questions from the floor
Q: (Mike Doodson – Honorary)
Congratulations for providing a really thrilling race today and I think you all had some very exciting passes, but the one that I think got our imagination going was Mark going down the hill, no DRS and taking it straight to Alonso. Could you tell us about that and whether it was just a moment's inspiration or had you calculated it all?
Well, you don't have much time to get the calculator out at that point, mate, so I think most of the race I was still charged with frustration from the start, so when I came out behind Fernando, obviously we were very, very close going down into Eau Rouge and I knew Fernando would have been using some KERS so I was using some KERS as well. I got a tow, obviously, and then I thought if I can get to the inside then I might have the line but obviously both of us are very experienced, we both don't give much too easily, so it was a good battle and very, very rewarding that it worked out OK, but it takes two guys doing a good job to get all that right obviously, so it's more rewarding when you can do it with someone like Fernando because he's a world-class driver and he knows when enough is enough. Obviously my attitude might have been a bit different with someone else, let's say, but in the end, it worked out for me today but in Monza, maybe it's his turn to do it to me. I was breathing in at the bottom, I got in and I looked in the mirror at the top and I saw he was still in… well, he had no choice, obviously in the end he had to… one of us had to lift and I had a slightly better line and it was he who had to lift.
Q: (Vincent Marre – Sports Zeitung)
Sebastian, it's your first win here at Spa. According to great champions, winning here and at tracks like Suzuka is memorable. How do you feel about that today?
Yeah, definitely. I'm very proud. I think all drivers love coming here, it's a fantastic circuit and as I said, even driving on your own it is fun. Racing each other it's even more fun and I think it was a very exciting race for us. Obviously you had to manage the tyres, going into the race wasn't easy, but then it turned out the pace was very good and we went through some people, so it was crucial and a fun race, so I think it was one of the best we have had this year. I definitely enjoyed every single lap and obviously, in the end, we found ourselves in quite a comfortable position, not needing to push a hundred percent every lap any more, so all in all, it was a great race for us.
Q: (James Allen – Financial Times)
Mark, you were saying this was a great team effort. Obviously you spent most of the race on the medium tyre which is not what one would have thought, going into the weekend. How much were you feeding the information back, because it's basically a research exercise for both of you during the course of the race?
First of all, I think the reason the communication was probably higher than it needed to be at other venues was because there was no running on Friday, obviously, so we were in a new situation in this Grand Prix putting the tyres on the limit for lap after lap after lap which we didn't get to do on Friday. When I was sitting behind the safety car I was really pissed off, I was on the wrong tyre and out of position. I thought that the options were going to be much much stronger. I still don't think they were a disaster but the prime, the medium worked very well. All I could do was give the information, keep pushing, for sure those tyres weren't going to go anywhere for me and that's generally the case when we make a pit stop, one's tyres are pretty tired. So, as you say, it was a bit on an experiment, more so than at most grands prix this year because it's pretty rare you get such limited running into the grand prix, so that was the case why there was a lot of nerves going in on many fronts.
Q: (James Allen – Financial Times)
Sebastian, you'd had two stops by lap 15 already, you were obviously trying to save a stop with that third set, why did it behave so differently do you think?
We obviously decided to pit for the second time when the safety car came out. I think at that stage there was a bit of science going on. Obviously we were all very keen to find out the shape of the tyres, even after only a couple of laps, so we decided to pit. At that stage, I think the safety car didn't necessarily help us, but it gave us a window to pit but as I said, earlier, we were in the lead by six or seven seconds so I lost that but got another idea about the tyres and then it was clear that… in an ideal world, we split the rest of the race more or less in two. The soft tyre was the quicker tyre so we tried to get as many laps as we could out of it, before we changed to a medium. From there onwards, we just controlled the pace and brought the car to the chequered flag, but that was the reason why we did so many laps on the third set of tyres.
Q: (Livio Oricchio – O Estado de Sao Paulo)
Sebastian and Mark, is the fantastic performance of your car here related to the nature of the track, which probably suits your car, or the upgrade you did during the break, that you faced McLaren and Ferrari again in the same conditions?