23 September 2012
Singapore GP - Post-race press conference - Pt.2
Drivers: Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull), Jenson Button (McLaren), Fernando Alonso (Ferrari)
Questions From The Floor
Q: (Ubaid Parker - F1 Pulse)
Sebastian, when you were chasing Hamilton, you were losing three to four tenths on several laps in sector two alone, although you were recovering it a little bit in sector one and sector three. Was there any particular reason for that, because you did mention that turn ten was a difficulty yesterday?
No, not really. I saw that I was gaining a little bit in the first sector, not sure in the second sector but I could see that I probably lost a bit but I think Lewis has been very quick in sector two all weekend. Also, I think I was fairly close to him, so obviously the closer you get, it's a bit of a disadvantage but I try to keep the gap fairly much the same, lap by lap. I didn't really mean to close the gap, because I know that the closer I get, the more grip I lose, and obviously I will lose tyres just by running close to him and losing downforce so I think it was a tactical race in the beginning, especially the beginning of the second stint after the first pit stop. If you go all out in one lap you probably go a second faster but then you do this exercise for three laps and Jenson is coming. It's the races that we have these days but I think, as I said, Lewis was already quick in sector two so it was probably not a surprise to lose a little bit against him.
Q: (Ian de Cotta - Today)
Sebastian, you say this is a tough circuit. What does it feel like to win twice in a row?
Very good. I'm very happy. I think this is one of the best races to win in terms of atmosphere. Everything is a little bit special here. It's a surprise in a way, because we haven't been racing here for fifty years - Formula One hasn't been racing here for fifty years but it still feels like a real classic already. It's nice. I think everyone likes coming here. It's a bit funny to be in the European time zone and a little bit against everything else in this city. It's great to get the opportunity. It's a great city, more than five million people living here and the circuit is right in the middle. When you do the drivers' parade and you see a lot of people around the track it's nice just to be part of it, obviously even greater to win, which was great last year, but is even greater this year to repeat it. I'm very happy, especially with this year's championship. It's very tight. We probably didn't have the fastest package this weekend but we still won the race. I'm very happy.
Q: (Michael Schmidt - Auto, Motor und Sport)
Fernando, in the second stint you were consistently catching up to the leaders; what was different in that stint compared to qualifying and the other parts of the race?
I don't know. I think we were pushing a little bit harder and we were in free air. In the first stint we were fighting a little bit with Pastor and then we were probably a little bit more competitive with the soft tyre compared to the super soft, so maybe that was the reason.
Q: (Frederic Ferret - L'Equipe)
To all three of you: what are your expectations for Suzuka and your specific car, each of you?
I think we have to improve. I think there is still a little bit that we need to gain. I think that at the moment McLaren is the fastest car and the Ferrari is a little bit of an allrounder. It's always quick and always there so we need to make sure that we see the chequered flag. Reliability will be important but it's a fun track so I'm looking forward to it. The Sauber will be quick, unlike this weekend and we will go from there.
It's always very difficult to know because it's such a different circuit to this one but if you compare it to Spa, and it's reasonably similar to Spa - but without the run-off areas - it's a circuit that should suit us pretty well. I still think that the Red Bulls will be strong as they were in Spa. Qualifying was great for us and the race was as well, but in the race our pace was no better than the Red Bulls. It's going to be a competitive race, I think. We really don't know where the Ferrari will stand on that type of circuit. It's going to be a competitive race, and one I'm very much looking forward to.
Yeah, a little bit difficult to predict. I think all this year we've been up and down for all the teams and it's the same for us. For sure, we need to improve the performance we saw here. We struggled all weekend. Positions five and 13 for our cars is not what we were hoping for so we need to be in a better position in Suzuka. Maybe Silverstone is also quite similar to Suzuka and we were quite OK there so hopefully we can repeat that kind of performance.
Q: (Carlos Miguel - La Gaceta)
Fernando, maybe your first stop was a little bit early; one or two laps more, for the traffic, I think - or no?
I don't know. We more or less stopped when we felt that the tyres were dropping off too much and we didn't want to lose too much time. So we stopped. We found some traffic there and we struggled to overtake. After that, we had good pace so maybe... I don't know. It's difficult to... or it's easy to see after the race. I was happy with the pit stop call.
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