F1 » 23 May 2013
Thursday press conference - Monaco GP - Pt.1
Yeah, we've echoed the safety issues and said that whatever needs to be done on safety grounds is obviously fine with us, we're not going to go against that. As far as the tyres being marginal goes, we've found them to be quite consistent. But then again - different cars, different drivers, different styles... they work for us. So we're actually quite happy with the way they are.
Franz, what about you and Toro Rosso?
I think the problems started in testing, because in February it was very cold when we were out the first time this year and if I remember only Jerez was an acceptable test but otherwise in Barcelona it was quite cold. There we couldn't do a proper test for the tyres. I think if we had tested in a warmer country some of the problems we observe now could have been sorted out. Therefore, I hope that in future we will do these tests under other conditions, under conditions under which we are racing and then I think Pirelli immediately will react and will come up with a proper solution. So far we at Toro Rosso haven't faced bigger problems.
Finally to you Bob. From a deputy team principal's perspective: safety, racing, what's your opinion?
I think Pirelli have done a good job. Fundamentally we're looking to try to average out at two to three stops per race and I think if you take the extremes in any 20-race series you're going to have some that might do four and some that might do one. But overall were going to achieve the objective. I agree with Paul, it's the same for everybody. I think some of the teams will have put in resource perhaps this time year to start looking at how they're going to develop their car, what suspension programme they're going to put in to optimise the tyres, other teams will continued to work on aero. That's the choice of the teams at the end of the day and you've got to deliver what you think is the most competitive package. But there are four points of contact on a track, it doesn't matter how much else you do, you've got to make the tyres work.
Alain, I'm sure you've been watching the racing quite intently. Has the sport got the right balance at the moment between exciting racing or tyres dominating too much?
I think in the past and very recently it's been very much criticised for not having a show or indecision. We should feel very lucky that we have these kind of races. In the last few years, we have the decision only in the last grand prix. Obviously, also think about next year when we have the new engine coming we will talk maybe a little bit more about the engine, the technology, about being much closer to the product of the automotive industry. But we still need to keep the show also. We need to keep the indecision so it's going to be even better balanced but at the moment I wouldn't criticise what we have today.
If I could move on and turn to you, Franz. Both of your drivers in their second year with Toro Rosso this season. What improvements are you seeing from Jean-Eric Vergne and Daniel Ricciardo and as drivers who have been part of the Red Bull driver programme, do you see something in either of them that suggests that they could move up to the senior team?
Yeah I must say that both of the drivers have increased their performance and their understanding of the car, of the technique, of everything, much during the last two years and they are still learning a lot. But I must say that so far they have done a reasonably good job and if we provide them with a good car, a good package, they are always able to score points. Of course, Daniel Ricciardo has a little bit more experience as he did already 11 races with HRT and you can see this. Jean-Eric Vergne is coming up with good technical feedback. He is learning also a lot. I expect from both of the drivers a very competitive second half of the season, once more if we provide them with a good car and then we will see how the future will be.
Christian, I'm sure as Red Bull team principal you keep an eye on all the young drivers in the young development programme?
Yeah, absolutely. Both youngsters have been members of the Red Bull Junior team for quite a few years now and or course we watch their progress with great interest. They're both young, talented drivers, both developing very well. It's good to see. They're both racing here on merit. For sure they're two guys we have a watchful eye over.
We're getting to that stage of the season where traditionally you sit down, Red Bull, with Mark Webber and negotiate a new contract for next year, it's normally towards the early part of the summer. Has anything been the case or has happened this season that might influence those negotiations? Will you be sitting down with Mark soon? What's your thinking for the future?
Well, we're sitting here at race six, so you know there's still quite a few to go. But at the relevant time we'll sit down with Mark and see what he wants to do, what his plans are for the future. Our interest is quite simple: we want the best two drivers in our cars going forward. Mark and Sebastian has been a tremendously successful partnership. It's won three consecutive Constructors' World Championships for us and obviously Mark's made a significant contribution to that. At the relevant time - which isn't now - we will sit down and talk about the future.
Tagged as: Red Bull Racing , Christian Horner , Horner , Toro Rosso , Monaco , Franz Tost , press conference , Pirelli , Force India F1 , Tost , Lotus , alain prost , Prost , Lopez , Gerard Lopez
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