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Thursday press conference - Bahrain GP - Pt.2

Pastor and Paul, as drivers, as top drivers, do you enjoy the challenge of prolonging a stint, of driving on tyres that have less grip? It's a difficult way but it can be rewarding as Jenson said.

Pastor Maldonado:
Yeah, I think everyone is trying to make the tyres live for longer. For sure, that can change your final result in the race, because you can play with the strategy. At the moment, it seems to be that more or less all the teams are quite close on their strategies but this is only the beginning of the season. We saw the same in the past. We need a couple of races to learn the tyres more and it should be more or less like last year. For sure, this year the tyres are more sensitive, they are going away quite quickly but it's the same for everyone.

It's something that you've had to deal with a lot, Paul, not just here but throughout much of last season.

Paul di Resta:
I see it as a very positive thing in the position that we are as a team, midfield, where Jenson's fighting at the moment. Obviously we're trying to take it to them, but being unpredictable gives you chances. Equally, when you see the big guys at the front, putting a load through the tyres in qualifying, it plays into our hands towards the end of stints. At the end of a Grand Prix, that's valuable points for us and if you can take a gamble and it pays off, like the position we were in last year, we definitely didn't have a car that deserved to be sixth but we got ourselves to do that and went away with some very big success. That leads momentum into other Grands Prix.

Q: (Andrea Cremonesi – La Gazzetta dello Sport).
Felipe, tyres this year seem more important than ever, maybe as important as 2011. In this race, Pirelli has decided to change their option tyre from the soft to the medium. On the hard, you had problems in Malaysia. Could you tell us how the car feels on the hard and if you feel a little penalised by Pirelli's decision?

Felipe Massa:
Yeah, I think maybe you're going to see a race strategy which can be very important for the race as we've seen in most of the races up to now. It will be no different here. But I didn't have problems with the hard tyres in Malaysia. The only problem I had was that the degradation was similar to the medium, not just for me but for most of the teams. I think that's a little problem of the tyres. I think you need to chose the right difference, from one compound to the other, and I think that's the only... so I'm sure here the difference will be big on the tyres, from medium to hard, even though the degradation may be similar. Many people try to use the medium tyres as much as possible. I think here it's a track that is very hot so let's try to do a good strategy as well.

Q: (Michael Casey - AP).
Paul, have you had a sit-down with your teammate and worked out the differences after last weekend's race? And even despite all the problems, with the finish you had, what does that mean for the season? It's got to give you more momentum.

Paul di Resta:
I already said, of course there were discussions, there were opinions, but I believe it's sorted. To take the positives from it, we obviously scored good points in China. Malaysia was a big miss for us. We went into that race with the unknown had we fixed the pit stop issue and the wheelnuts that we had? I believe that was probably the strongest Grand Prix until now in terms of the performance, so I think that's why we're fairly optimistic, hopefully that we can do something this weekend, back in the heat. Our car seems to work very well with that and I think as a baseline goes, the consistency I think is the key to how we develop the car, and how we're going to progress this year. Certainly going away with points this weekend is the target, but essentially, I think we need to get ourselves a bit more up the grid in qualifying, because that gives you the track position and that's what hampered our race at the last Grand Prix.

Would you say the discussions were amicable?

Paul di Resta:
It's always amicable, it always is.

Q: (Abhishek Takle – Midday).
To all of you: with the nature of the tyres changing from year to year and given how crucial they are today, how much do you have to alter your natural way of driving or your driving style to get the best out of them?

Jean-Eric Vergne:
The driving style between qualifying and the race is different. We all know the tyres don't last very long and you need to be very careful with how you accelerate, how you are in the high speed corners. You have to try and manage them as well as possible, the tyre energy and therefore you need to change your driving style quite a lot.

Felipe, you've been driving for a while. Is it difficult to change your driving style after so many years in the sport, or is there something that you have to do in the simulator which helps you to achieve that?

Felipe Massa:

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
18.04.2013- Press conference, Felipe Massa (BRA) Scuderia Ferrari F138
18.04.2013- Press conference, Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-28
18.04.2013- Paul di Resta (GBR) Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM06
18.04.2013- Pastor Maldonado (VEN) Williams F1 Team FW35
12.04.2013- Free Practice 2, Charles Pic (FRA) Caterham F1 Team CT03
22.03.2013 - free practice 2, Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR8
18.04.2013- (L-D) Paul di Resta (GBR) Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM06, Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR8, Charles Pic (FRA) Caterham F1 Team CT03, Pastor Maldonado (VEN) Williams F1 Team FW35, Felipe Massa (BRA) Scuderia Ferrari F138 and Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-28
18.04.2013- Press conference, Felipe Massa (BRA) Scuderia Ferrari F138 and Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-28

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