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Post-race press conference - Japanese GP - Pt.2

Japanese GP Friday FIA press conference with Giorgio Ascanelli (Toro Rosso), Pat Fry (Ferrari), James Key (Sauber), Paddy Lowe (McLaren), Adrian Newey (Red Bull) and Naoki Tokunaga (Renault).
Team representatives: Giorgio Ascanelli (Toro Rosso), Pat Fry (Ferrari), James Key (Sauber), Paddy Lowe (McLaren), Adrian Newey (Red Bull) and Naoki Tokunaga (Renault).

Questions from the floor

Q: (Sarah Holt – BBC Sport).
Adrian, we've seen that you've built cars for lots of former champions who have been crowned here in Japan, from Senna to Prost to Hakkinen. How would you rate Vettel amongst those former champions?

Adrian Newey:
Unfortunately I wasn't involved with Ayrton when he was crowned champion here, so I can't comment on that one. It's a bit along the lines of the question earlier. I think Sebastian is obviously supremely talented but I kind of feel it's unfair to start comparing one driver I've worked with against another.

Q: (Sarah Holt – BBC Sport).
Do you think he might have the potential to go on and be a multiple World Champion even beyond this season?

I think undoubtedly yes, there's no doubt Sebastian can do it. It's up to us to try and deliver the car that allows him to do it.

Q: (Will Buxton – Speed TV).
Not a technical question but one for everybody. We move on to Korea next, which was a new track last year, and then on to India, which is a new track for this year. How important do you see the constant expansion of the Formula One calendar, and for you, and your teams, how much are looking forward to India? How much can we learn from India? How much can they learn from Formula One?

I think it's great to be going to new places. India is obviously a country we've never been to before so in that sense it's very good, we enjoy going to new circuits. The only caveat I would put on that is that it's important that we don't forget our long-standing traditional circuits. Coming to Suzuka or Monza, Spa, all the great classic circuits that we have and still do go to – I think it would be an awful shame if they dropped of the calendar because, at the end of the day, it's those that are there year-in, year-out and if Formula One lost them, it might be difficult to ever get them back again.

Paddy Lowe:
It is a World Championship, so I think bringing the race to more parts of the world… India is a very major population centre in the world, so I think it's great to be going there. We need to go to more places. Going to the States next year is also a really great step.

Q: (Dieter Rencken – The Citizen).
It looks as though fighter pilot-like canopies are going to be inevitable in Formula One. What are the technical challenges and do you feel that a closed cockpit runs counter to the spirit of Formula One?

I don't think they are inevitable, actually.

I don't think it's inevitable. It's something that's being studied. A lot of discussion has occurred at council meetings in the FIA as to whether such a thing is right for the sport. An essential feature of Formula One is that it's open-wheeled and open-cockpit. I think the decision, if ever it was taken, to close the cockpit would be very, very fundamental and I think those councillors have already expressed reservations about that, so I think there would have to be a very, very compelling case made that that was an essential feature for safety. Some work is being done to research into it and so far I don't think that a compelling case is emerging, even though there is a risk… I think the biggest risk still present in Formula One, to a driver, is in that area, as we saw with Felipe the other year, but it's not necessarily proven that a canopy is the right solution to that.

Q: (Ralf Bach – Sport Bild).

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
James Key, Sauber F1 launch, Valencia, 2011 [pic credit: Sauber Media]
28.07.2011 Pat Fry (ENG), Scuderia Ferrari
07.10.2011- Friday Practice 1, Adrian Newey (GBR), Red Bull Racing , Technical Operations Director
06.05.2011- Friday Practice 1, Adrian Newey (GBR), Red Bull Racing , Technical Operations Director

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