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Belgian GP – Thursday press conference – Pt.1

DRIVERS – Jean-Eric Vergne (Toro Rosso), Charles Pic (Marussia), Vitaly Petrov (Caterham), Pedro de la Rosa (HRT), Michael Schumacher (Mercedes), Jenson Button (McLaren)

Jean-Eric, this is a new circuit for you in Formula One but I understand you've raced here before?

Jean-Eric Vergne:
Yeah, I think it's my favourite track. I'm really happy to be here in F1, to learn this track in and F1 car. I found it amazing in Formula 3 and World Series. So I can't wait to drive tomorrow in this car, it should be nice.

So you've been here in Formula 3 and World Series by Renault?

Jean-Eric Vergne:
Yes. I won three races in F3 in the same weekend here and last year I won as well. I finished second and first. It's generally a good track for me, so hopefully I make a good run here as well this weekend.

A lot of people feel that with the problem with the technical director at Toros Rosso that development might have finished but I understand that's not the case.

Jean-Eric Vergne:
So far everything is OK. The team is still pushing really hard. I don't have much to say about it.

You have some updates here though?

Jean-Eric Vergne:
Yeah we have some good updates. Well, I don't know if they're good, but we have some and also we're testing some new things for next year's car – front suspension. So, everything is still going on quite well in the team and we're looking forward to this weekend.

Charles, obviously you've raced the first half of the season – how do you feel it's gone as far as you're concerned?

Charles Pic:
Quite good. I am quite happy about my first half of the season. Everything was new for me. So, first races were not easy because everything was new and there were a lot of things to learn. But I am quite happy with my progress and quite happy with the team's progress because the start of the year was not easy. We were not able to make the winter tests. They worked really hard and made a lot of improvements and even if you cannot always… it's not easy to see because the position is not changing but we are trying to close the gap. So, really looking forward to the second part of the season and to updates coming from the summer, so we'll see how it is and on my side I will be focused to keep pushing hard and improving myself.

I guess you measure yourself on your team-mate obviously but also on the people either side of you and in front of you. Are you happy with the gap between yourselves and Caterham?

Charles Pic:
Yes, we are not in the position yet to fight with them but it was much closer for the last two races – Hockenheim and Budapest. It's great and I hope that with the update it will be even closer this weekend.

Vitaly, the one problem you've had so far is qualifying in relation to your team-mate, whereas in the races you seem to have beaten him. Is that something you intend to tackle in the second half of the season?

Vitaly Petrov:
Of course I will try my best. What is good is that I know the problem, so we will try to fix this problem in the second half of the season, so I will try to get close to my team-mate and then we will see.


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