14 April 2013
Sunday press conference - Chinese GP - Pt.1
Sunday's post-race FIA press conference from Shanghai, China with Fernando Alonso, Kimi Raikkonen and Lewis Hamilton.
Drivers: Fernando Alonso (Ferrari), Kimi Raikkonen (Lotus) and Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes).
(Conducted by David Coulthard)
Fernando, congratulations. A fairly dominant victory in the end and your 31st victory, putting you fifth in the all-time list just behind Ayrton Senna. What does this one mean to you?
Well, hello everybody first of all and thank you for the support all weekend. Amazing fans all weekend and it's very nice to race here. About the race: yes, definitely it was a fantastic race for us, from the start to the end, without big problems with the car. The tyre degradation was better than expected probably, so we managed more or less the pace. Yeah, it feels great after the retirement in Malaysia, we had some pressure to finish the race. The two races we finished this year; one second place and today the victory so definitely the start of this 2013 campaign is looking good so we are very optimistic.
We heard the team talking to you during the grand prix telling you not need to push. They were trying to slow you down in some respects and you were saying 'I'm not pushing'.
Well, you always push. In a F1 race it's impossible not to push but it's true that we had some pace, maybe, in the pocket. Not easy to know when to use it depending on the state of the tyres. A little bit more potential and hopefully we can show it in Bahrain in one week.
Kimi Raikkonen, that's your 20th consecutive finish in F1. You're certainly Mr Consistency. You had to work hard for that second place today. You had some damage to the front wing of your car after some contact, so tell us about that and also how it affected the balance?
I think in the end it was a pretty okay result. Obviously we want to win but after a bad start the car wads handling well but then overtaking Perez, I was next to him and he just pushed me on the kerb but I tried to avoid him but I went on the grass and hit him on the rear I think and damaged the front. That didn't help but luckily it didn't affect so much the handling, it was just a bit too much understeery but we could still fight for second place. For sure without the damage we could have been quite a bit faster. Anyhow, good points and we try to do better next time.
We come to Lewis Hamilton, our pole-sitter. It didn't quite work out for you there on race pace. You really dropped away towards the closing stages, under a lot of pressure from Vettel but some great racing nonetheless.
Yeah, I'm really happy with today's result. Great result for the team, very happy with the points. The team did a fantastic job all weekend. Unfortunately, we didn't have the kind of pace these two have but still very fortunate to get on the podium.
Fernando, a closing question for you. Only one week until Bahrain. What are you expecting in terms of performance there and what's the celebration going to be like tonight with your Ferrari team?
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