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Malaysian GP – Thursday press conference – Pt.1

I feel really fine now in my second year. I know what to expect a bit more as well, everybody is very close also. The mid teams to the top teams, we are close so in some conditions maybe we can have some surprises from the mid-teams. Hopefully we can have a stable weekend this time, not like Melbourne. It was very difficult to prepare, especially the race. We went out there without knowing what to expect and it was of course difficult conditions.

Q:
Michael, the gearbox failure in Melbourne, obviously it wasn't something you expected but do the team think it's just a one-off, or is there a design problem? What's the diagnosis?

Michael Schumacher:
Well, it is a one-off. We did quite a few thousand kilometres in winter testing and never had this issue. We understood it though, and fixed it.

Q:
And there's no penalty is there?

Michael Schumacher:
No, I took the penalty in the race.

Q:
Obviously there are a lot of positives from last weekend - what positives did you take from it?

Michael Schumacher:
The basic positive is that we definitely have a much-improved car compared to last year. Still we have to learn it and understand it in all circumstances to take the benefit and the full performance from it, as we have seen in the race with Nico, so there is still something to learn, but we're positive that we can improve quite a bit, in race pace in particular.

Q:
Jenson, you've won here in the past, you were a winner last weekend, your team-mate interestingly enough said you managed to switch the tyres on, that you seemed to understand the tyres better. Do you think that was your advantage last weekend?

Jenson Button:
I really don't know. I think we all try to do the best job we can with the tyres but personally I don't feel the tyres were a big issue for anyone in Melbourne. They seemed to be very consistent and we didn't have degradation like we do at other circuits, like here, so I feel that I had a good balance with the car, I had a lot of confidence in the car and yeah, I think the consistency was pretty good throughout the race. Obviously we had the scare with the safety car for us - it's always tough when you're leading by ten or eleven seconds, to suddenly find a car right up behind you again. But I think we made good use of the safety car in the end and were able to come home and get a very important victory for the whole team.

Q:
You've won here from pole and also had your first podium here. It's a circuit you quite like isn't it?

Jenson Button:
It is. It's so different to last weekend, it's very fast and flowing, very smooth compared to a street circuit and the tyres. It's always more difficult for the tyres around here. But obviously we have the hard and the medium compound and they're both pretty hard compounds, so it shouldn't be too much of an issue. I think it's just the temperature and the humidity that will be the biggest issue for them. And it's one of those places where you really don't know what the weather's going to do. When I previously won here it was cut short, the race, because of a red flag. That's the thing here, normally it doesn't just rain, it chucks it down. So, if it does rain this weekend we hope we can continue racing because it's a great circuit.

Q:
Fernando, is that going to make a difference to Ferrari this weekend? Obviously a street circuit last weekend and you qualified some way down but a great race up to fifth. Hopefully the change of circuit will make a difference to you?

Fernando Alonso:
I'm not sure. Hopefully yes but I don't think so, to be honest. We have been testing at different circuits: Jerez, Barcelona and then in Australia with more or less the same car with the same problems on it. The cars are nearly identical for everybody compared with Australia, I guess, so I don't think there will be big surprises here. Let's wait and see, and try to adapt the car to the circuit, the conditions, the heat. Then, yes, as you said, the qualifying. We saw the true performance, we are not as competitive as we want, probably, but then in the race anything can happen. In Australia with a good start and the stops and the strategy you can put yourself in a decent place. We will try to do a similar race here and try to defend as many points as possible.

QQ:
And this is a circuit where you got your first pole position, your first podium in 2003, you have two pole positions and two wins as well, a circuit you enjoy?

Fernando Alonso:



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
22.03.2012- Press conference, Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F2012
22.03.2012- Press conference, Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F2012
22.03.2012- Press conference, Sergio PŽrez (MEX) Sauber F1 Team C31, Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR7, Pastor Maldonado (VEN) Williams F1 Team FW34, Michael Schumacher (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W03, Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-27 nd Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F2012
12.10.2014- Race, Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-29
12.10.2014- Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari F14T
12.10.2014- Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F14T
12.10.2014- Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F14T, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari F14T, Marco Mattiacci (ITA) Team Principal, Scuderia Ferrari and the Ferrari F1 team show a panel for Jules Bianchi (FRA) Marussia F1 Team MR03
12.10.2014- Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari F14T
12.10.2014- Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F14T
12.10.2014- Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari F14T
12.10.2014- Race, Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR9
12.10.2014- Race, Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR9
12.10.2014- Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari F14T
12.10.2014- Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F14T, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari F14T, Marco Mattiacci (ITA) Team Principal, Scuderia Ferrari and the Ferrari F1 team show a panel for Jules Bianchi (FRA) Marussia F1 Team MR03
12.10.2014- Race, Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR9
12.10.2014- Race, Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR9
12.10.2014- Race, Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-29
12.10.2014- Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari F14T

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