6 July 2013
German Grand Prix: Post-qualifying press conference - Pt.2
FIA post-qualifying press conference from the Nurburgring in Germany with Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes), Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull Racing) and Mark Webber (Red Bull Racing).
Drivers: Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes), Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull Racing) and Mark Webber (Red Bull Racing)
Questions from the floor
Q: (Simon Cass – The Daily Mail).
As unlikely as it looks that there's going to be a problem with the tyres in the race, are you sticking by the announcement that you would withdraw if there is a problem or are you going to leave it in the hands of Charlie (Whiting) to decide tomorrow?
I think it's pretty straightforward. I don't know where the question came from but... Yeah, I think it's pretty straightforward. Obviously when the race starts and... first of all, I'm confident that we won't have any problems but should we have any problems, then obviously it's difficult for us inside the car to judge that because we can't see and we can't know what's going on so Charlie is obviously the one who is deciding and I think we had a good chat with him on Thursday night so he's aware of the situation. I think we were very close at Silverstone to have a red flag but obviously it was new to everybody including the race direction so I think we obviously learned our lesson and should be well prepared for tomorrow. But again, I don't expect any difficulties.
Just for clarity, how would the senior drivers communicate with him? Do you have a link with him via radio or do you have to go via the team? How would it happen?
Charlie can hear us when we are talking on the radio. It's not the first time he's listening to us. I think if we had races in the wet, if whatever was going on, he's obviously aware and listening to all the drivers.
Q: (Vincent Marre – Sport Zeitung).
Sebastian, which of the two drivers who are sitting on your left do you fear the most: Lewis Hamilton winning with Mercedes here in Germany or Mark Webber, leaving at the end of the season?
It's difficult to hear. I'm not too sure I got everything but who do I fear the most? I think that was the question. I'm looking forward to the race tomorrow. I'm not really focusing on just Lewis or just Mark. I think Lewis is ahead of us, Mark is right behind and then we go from there. Obviously I focus on the start, focus on the lights and then we will see where we are in the first corner. After that we have sixty laps, it's a long Grand Prix, a lot of things can happen here so I don't think the race gets decided straight away so really looking after myself first of all and then obviously the target is to win tomorrow.
Q: (Oana Popoiu – F1Zone.net).
Sebastian, you used to win races starting from pole position; how difficult is it this year when Mercedes are faster in qualifying?
I think generally you don't have to start from pole position to win races. It helps, because obviously it's the best position to start from but I think we had good races also from other positions and as I just said, the race is long, there are a lot of things that can happen so we focus on the start, go from there. In terms of strategy, I think we have a rough idea, it all depends on tyres and tyre wear. I think there might be a lot of things happening tomorrow. I think Ferrari decided to start on the medium, on the harder compound so we will see tomorrow.
Q: (Frederic Ferret – L'Equipe).
Lewis and Mark, you've both won on this track. According to you, which is the most difficult part of the track and how do you deal with it?
It's a fantastic circuit, one of the classics and it hasn't lost that feel of an old classic circuit. There's not one particular part of the track that's harder than the other. It's a very fast, flowing circuit. As you can see, the Red Bulls seem to be quite quick from the middle... in the last sector. I was able to be a little bit quicker in the first sector. It's really being quite accurate with the lines that you choose and trying to keep up. You need the downforce to keep up the minimum speed through the corners. I don't think there's one particular place that's harder than any others.
I think it is a classic circuit, still a bit of an old school track, particularly the middle sector. Even things like the kerbs, they're quite nice, they're the old-style kerbs. I said to Charlie that we should put some of these kerbs actually in some new circuits because it's self-policing on the exit. We don't have this astro-turf rubbish, we have... It's a beautiful little circuit for us to still drive on so I think all the guys enjoy driving here. Also the undulations are quite nice: climbing in a Formula One car and having the different speed range but the entries are the most important. You have to be very accurate on the way in to these corners, so I think that's important. The first sector is quite wide, the second sector is quite narrow, so accuracy and line is probably a little bit more... a sniff more important than maybe some other tracks where we have a bit more scope for line.
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