Sebastian, did you have any indication during the winter tests, or even Friday here, that you could face this kind of problem with your tyres during the race?
Well, I think in winter testing everybody had trouble to make the tyres last. It seemed to be very inconsistent in Barcelona, very dependent on the day you were running, depending on the conditions. I think we ended up today with similar conditions but it's a completely different track. I think the amount of laps covered today were not even out of sight, they were out of thought I think in Barcelona for everyone. I think there has been a certain trend; if you look at Lotus last year, looking after the tyres, if you remember, a couple of key races such as Montreal, where they seemed to be the only team to make a one stop possible, whereas I think Fernando and myself struggled and had to pit again. It was quite a messy race at the end but I think you always learn along the way. We had a plan today before the race which I think was different to Kimi's and probably very similar to Fernando's or Ferrari's. Adding up with our tyre wear, I think that's where we finished today.
(Kate Walker – Girl Racer)
Another tyre question for you, Sebastian: over the last few years your car has been known for its downforce, it's been a really good advantage for you. Do you think that might actually be an Achilles heel this year, that you're wearing out your tyres more quickly than the competition?
Well, it depends, I think. At the end of the day, surely there were times when we had plenty of downforce compared to other people, but I think these times are over, not just this year but way before that. I think we sometimes have the ability to compare a little bit to other people and the magic days when we were covering a lot more speed in high speed corners, I don't think they are happening any more. I think we are still very competitive but I think there's a lot more to it than just the raw downforce level. You could argue that with more downforce you go faster, you're asking more of the tyres, all of those things, but I think overall there's a certain trend where some cars seem to work pretty well in some conditions. As Kimi touched on today, he was struggling with front tyres; I think for us it was more evened out. We had both axles running away from us. I'm not sure about the Ferraris but looking at their tyres during running, it looked pretty similar to us, so especially at the end of the stints. Then again, every day can be a bit different. I think you need to be very careful to find a real trend but I think there have been a lot of races where we have been looking after the tyres pretty well and they will come again. For sure, today we were a little bit behind but next week is another race and completely different conditions, as Kimi said, so we will see what happens there.
(Flavio Vanetti - Corriere della Sera)
Kimi, can you compare the feeling that you have now with the one you had in 2007 when you won with Ferrari?
For sure a win is always a win so in that way we have a good feeling, the best start that you can have in the first race of the season, but of course many things have happened since then. Still, I won here and it's nice to be winning the first race again. But we started in seventh place and had to fight through the positions to win in the first place and I led more or less all the race. Different years but a similar feeling because obviously we won the first race and leading the points.
(Michael Schmidt – Auto, Motor und Sport)
Fernando, the question was already asked to Sebastian but I think it was a little bit inconclusive. We saw this weekend two completely disciplines: in practice Red Bull
was dominating with a big pace difference, then all of a sudden, in the race, we have to say that the Lotus and the Ferrari
were faster, whether in traffic or on an open track. How do you explain that?
I don't have an explanation to be honest. It's not new. We saw in the last three years that Red Bull
are untouchable in qualifying and in the race everything is much closer. And we saw McLaren
sometimes winning the race and sometimes us. Lotus, I remember last year, in Hungary I think, in Bahrain, they finished on the podium and in qualifying they were not as quick as the Red Bulls so we need to find some extra pace in qualifying because if not, they will always start on the front row.
(Erkki Mustakari – Finnish News Agency)
Kimi, through the years we have seen that whoever can develop the car best through the season has the best fun towards the end of the year. Do you think Lotus has enough resources to keep up the work because there are not many ways you can go from here because you started by winning?
Yeah there was a big question mark last year in our team whether we can keep up with the bigger teams. Of course it's not going to be easy for us. I'm sure we have the people, all the tools to make it. The money is a big part of the thing. For sure we don't have the same budget as Ferrari
or Red Bull
or Mercedes but we could show last year that… we did pretty well on the money and the things we have. I have no doubt we have the people and the tools but of course if we get more money it will help and it will give us a better chance and more fair play against the bigger teams. Like I said, we have good plans, and if we can follow it up it might be good, it might not. It's a long season. If you do things right it will go nicely but one thing can change the whole year. You do a few things a little bit wrong it can turn around and go downhill after that. So we just have to do our normal things, like we did last year and put the good effort into new parts and if we're happy we keep them and if not we have to look more closely. But like I said, so far it has been good, so there is no reason why we can't keep it up.
(Heikki Kulta – Turun Sanomat)
Fernando, the same three guys were on the podium in Abu Dhabi in the same order. From your point of view were there any similarities in your fight against Kimi in this race compared to Abu Dhabi.