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United States GP - Post qualifying press conference

Drivers present: Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull), Lewis Hamilton (McLaren), Mark Webber (Red Bull)
TV UNILATERAL

Q:
Congratulations Sebastian, brand new circuit, you lost 55 minutes yesterday, and yet you absolutely nailed it today.

Sebastian Vettel:
Yeah, I'm very, very pleased with the result obviously. We started off on the right foot I think yesterday. The first practice was very good for us. It was extremely slippery to be honest to start with. Obviously the circuit is brand new, the asphalt is brand new and it takes a while for the track to come in but it's also quite a lot fun to slide around a couple of corners and it just got better throughout. I think you can see the lap times just got quicker. Through qualifying I think we were very happy. In the last section I would have loved to go a little bit quicker. I think I lost a little bit in the first and the last sector. It was a little bit closer than I wanted with Lewis. But overall, fantastic. Obviously, it's very important here to start from the front. We start on the clean side, both of us, so yeah, should be a good race tomorrow.

Q:
And your championship rival, down in the ninth place, will probably start eighth. What are your feelings about that?

Sebastian Vettel:
Yeah, I mean, not much to feel. Obviously we have to look after ourselves and as I said I'm very happy. We had a smooth session, no issues. As you touched on, yesterday afternoon was not ideal, we lost a little bit of time. These things can happen and they might happen again. So you never know and therefore it's the best strategy to keep your down and try to get the best, which I think was the target in qualifying. As I said I'm very happy with the result but so far nobody has scored any points. I think we have seen at the last race how quickly things can change and even starting at the back does give you opportunities, so we need to wait and see. But for us we focus on our race and tomorrow we have the chance to seal the Constructors' Championship for the team so that's what Mark and I will probably be looking out for.

Q:
Lewis, a tremendous lap - so, so close. But what about this first corner tomorrow? You're going to be starting alongside Sebastian, going up the hill into that first corner.

Lewis Hamilton:
I'm not really concerned about the first corner, I'm more concerned about the dirty side of the grid. I did a launch from it earlier on in P3 and it was quite slippery. No, hopefully tomorrow is just about getting a good start. It's so wide in Turn One, I don't think really much can go wrong there generally... I might be wrong. But obviously I don't want to get in the way of Sebastian's race. However, I do want to win, so I'll try my best to get through cleanly.

Q:
Third on the grid for you Mark Webber. At least you'll start on the clean side behind your team-mate. What are your hopes for tomorrow?

Mark Webber:
I'm pretty happy with qualifying actually. It's a very tricky venue in terms of tyres, circuit conditions, all those type of things together Seb touched on. It's easy to be out of the window here and not be super competitive if you don't get everything together. I was pretty happy with the last part of Q3. We had to manage a little problem in the car, which in the end I don't think would have costs us a position because the guys obviously were pretty quick and both did very strong lap times. But I'd have liked to have had a little bit more pace but overall I'm happy to the third on the grid. As you say it's certainly up there towards the front and we can have a very, very strong grand prix from there. So, it's a great job from the team. I think Constructors'-wise we've got our eye firmly on that tomorrow, to try and put that to bed and that'll be a huge result for everyone at Milton Keynes and at Renault.

PRESS CONFERENCE

Q:
Sebastian, we haven't really seen you going off at Turn 19. Have you been off there?

Sebastian Vettel:
Yesterday!

Q:
How have you been treating it? What is it about Turn 19 that's so difficult and how have you been treating it?

Sebastian Vettel:
Obviously I tried to stay on the track – it's faster – but it's extremely difficult because obviously you want to carry as much speed as possible into the corner and ideally be as early and aggressive on power as you can. The difficultly, first of all, is that the apex is quite difficult to see, so it's rather easy to overshoot, and then if you are not on the perfect line, there's less grip, you lose the car or if you're a little bit too keen, a little bit too quick on the way in, you tend to lose the rear quite aggressively, and then you have to catch the car in order not to spin. But staying on the track then is quite difficult. I think there are a couple of corners like that on the track. Obviously I think for all of us it was quite a surprise yesterday to start on this track, and it was very, very slippery. It was like driving on ice – and I think the first run would have been quicker on Intermediate tyres, so obviously the asphalt was pretty fresh for all of us. It took a while to come in but I think you see the lap times now just getting quicker and quicker, so the circuit is ramping-up massively.

Q:
You lost that 55 minutes yesterday, has that affected more your race preparations than your qualifying preparations?

Sebastian Vettel:
No, not really, because we were still able to get a decent run on lower fuel and one on high fuelling yesterday afternoon. The boys did a good job to get the car ready in time, just to have enough for two runs, as I said, a short run and a long run, so that was very important, otherwise you are a little bit… not in the dark because Mark had a solid P2, free practice two, but obviously you don't, you can't tick all the boxes you would like for Sunday. But that wasn't the case: if anything I think we missed a little bit out on the short runs where we would have loved to try a couple of things in order to make the car go quicker in qualifying – but I think we can say we were quite competitive and very happy with the result today.

Q:
Lewis, tell us about the lap, because it was so close, it was getting very close to Sebastian's.

Lewis Hamilton:
It was. I was very, very happy with my lap. I saw in Q2 that they were obviously massively quick, I think it was a second or something like that, nine-tenths. I didn't know where I was going to find that, so I thought that the Red Bulls would be in the lead – but I just went into Q3 and pushed as hard as I could, went in really hard and just gave absolutely everything. I seemed to find a little bit more time at the last sector, on the actual lap that I did, it was two laps consecutive. Surprisingly, the second lap was even quicker, even though I'd already just done a fast lap. And on that lap, just I think way on the limit everywhere. A couple of oversteer moments; I think I lost about a tenth at the last corner. The thing is I gained it on the way in and lost it on the exit. That's how racing is – but still really happy to be where…

Q:
What about the race tomorrow? You were very competitive obviously in qualifying but what about in the race itself?

Lewis Hamilton:




Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
16.11.2012 - Free practice 2, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB8
16.11.2012 - Free practice 2, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB8
16.11.2012 - Free practice 2, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB8
Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB10.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB10.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB10.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB10.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB10.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB10.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
The Mercedes AMG F1 W05 of Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 is recovered back to the pits.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
The Mercedes AMG F1 W05 of Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 is recovered back to the pits.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
The Mercedes AMG F1 W05 of Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 is recovered back to the pits.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
(L to R): Paul Hembery (GBR) Pirelli Motorsport Director and Mario Isola (ITA) Pirelli Racing Manager and the Lotus F1 E22 with new 18 inch Pirelli tyres and rims.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB10 running sensor equipment.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Mario Isola (ITA) Pirelli Racing Manager and the Lotus F1 E22 with new 18 inch Pirelli tyres and rims.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 running sensor equipment.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB10 running sensor equipment.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.
Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1.
09.07.2014. Formula One Testing, Silverstone, England, Wednesday.

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