5 October 2012
Friday press conference - Japanese GP - Pt.2
He's obviously one of the greats and I'm sure he will be a fantastic ambassador both for Mercedes and the sport going forwards. I think we'll still see him around a lot.
Michael Schumacher is by far the most successful driver in Formula One's history, and when he returned to the sport, it was undoubtedly good for Formula One and his leaving now will for sure be a loss for the sport.
I've only been fortunate enough to experience Michael's last few years in Formula One but I think he's been a wonderful ambassador. Obviously his performances speak for themselves. The way he handles himself in the paddock, particularly in adversity, he is the absolute professional and a real example to young drivers.
Q: (Bob McKenzie - The Daily Express).
Martin, Lewis told us in Tokyo that there was nothing you could have put on the table that would have kept him at McLaren at the end of the day, although maybe a £100m cheque would have done it. But he seems to have been lured him by the attraction of what Mercedes can offer him in 2014 when engine changes are made. Is it frustrating for you that you couldn't hang on to him with something concrete, and do you feel that you will be at a disadvantage in 2014?
Not just 2013. Lewis is a great driver and Mercedes, I'm sure, are very happy to have him and therefore losing a driver like that is something that, as a team principal, you don't set out to do. But if you tell me that there's nothing we could have put on the table which would have kept him then it makes me feel a whole lot better. Lewis made a decision, I respect that and believe me, we're working very closely and very hard together to see if we can win these remaining races and that's what we're focused on. Looking forward to 2013/2014, then we've got a fantastic partnership with Mercedes Benz and we're going to be heading into both of those seasons trying to win.
Q: (Bob McKenzie - The Daily Express).
Ross, do you feel that you will have an advantage?
Well, our agreement with McLaren is to supply engines to the same specification. None of us really know how it's going to be in 2014 in terms of engine performance, engine reliability. There won't be huge differences. We have a one team policy, a one team principle. Our staff at Brixworth and Brackley work together as one entity and that does bring them closer than can be achieved with a customer, but McLaren are an extremely professional customer. Our ambition is to have the best engine in 2014 as is Stefano's and McLaren will have that engine as well.
Q: (Paolo Ianieri - La Gazzetta dello Sport).
Stefano, you have to try to win at least a race in these last six races Today, Ferrari seems to be struggling a little bit compared to McLaren and Red Bull. How do you see things this weekend?
As always on Fridays it's very difficult to have a clear picture because you never know what the others are doing. For sure we know what we've done. It's a little bit too premature to see, after today, that we will struggle this weekend. For sure what we have seen is that as normal we have competitors that are very strong but this is nothing new. This is the picture just one hour after the end of free practice two, so we need to analyse, try to understand what the others were doing. So I don't want to say anything that will be different tomorrow so I'm a little bit cautious.
Q: (Vanessa Ruiz - ESPN Radio)
Stefano, one of the possible views on the McLaren/Perez deal is that Ferrari lost a talented young driver since Perez was from the academy, so what does the team have to say about it, what's your view on that?
Nothing. I mean he had this opportunity, and I think that what we wish to him is the best for his future. I think that he received this offer or he discussed this offer with a very important team and I think that first of all we didn't have any right to block him or to say something in that respect, because he was a driver who is working for the Sauber team. As I said, I think that Ferrari gave him a bit of experience by helping him in understanding something and that's the way it is. We need to accept that and we will see. We are working with other young drivers that we hope we will be able to bring in our team as they will be considered ready, so that's what I can say.
Q: (Bryon Young - The Daily Mirror).
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