» BACK TO CRASH.NET

Crash.Net F1 News

Singapore GP - Post-qualifying press conference - Pt.2

22 September 2012


Drivers: Lewis Hamilton (McLaren), Pastor Maldonado (Williams) and Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull).



Questions from the floor


Q: (Michael Schmidt - Auto, Motor und Sport).
Sebastian, what happened in Q3, you seemed to have lost the speed a little bit?

Sebastian Vettel:
Yeah, I don't know to be honest. I think the speed was there but we weren't able to really improve, whereas in Q2 I got the lap in reasonably safely and I was a little bit off Lewis, I think, one and a half tenths. I was confident that we can go quicker somewhere, lower in the 46s region. I think Lewis's time in Q3 was very quick so... if, could, would, should... we don't know but I think the pace was there to do better than what we did in Q2 but in Q3 we just couldn't pick and in the end I was even struggling to repeat the lap I did in the beginning, so yeah, obviously a bit disappointing but I think the speed is there. We have been competitive throughout the weekend. The race is very long here, a lot of things can happen - safety cars - so it's important to be in the right place at the right time and then we go from there.

Q: (Kate Walker - Girl Racer).
For all three of you: every race that we've had here has featured some safety cars, so to what extent do you guys take that into account for your own strategies in the race?

Lewis Hamilton:
Well, I think for us as drivers we just have to be ready to react, hope that it's neither of us and then we just leave it to the team to work on what we have to do. They will direct us what we have to do with fuel-wise and all those kind of things.

Pastor Maldonado:
I agree. I think either we need to be fully focused in this race on the conditions - very, very hot, very warm - and we need to put everything together to get a good performance. It's not only from our side, the team has to work together.

Sebastian Vettel:
It's difficult to know what happens. You can't drive round waiting for the safety car, to have a break but obviously there's little run-off here and we saw in free practice that if a car stops on the circuit then it's already enough to have yellow flags at least and a potential safety car in the race. It's difficult to know what happens but we'll see tomorrow I guess. So far we've always had one as far as I can remember.

Q: (Frederic Ferret - L'Equipe).
To all three of you: how confident are you that you can overtake tomorrow during the race?

Pastor Maldonado:
I think it's possible to overtake here, especially because of the big tyre degradation that we will have tomorrow. I think everybody will be struggling with the tyres at some time, but the strategy-wise must be really good for everyone, just to try to be consistent but I think here it's possible to overtake. We have a long straight, good DRS, it's not going to be very easy but we have a couple of places.

Lewis Hamilton:
Yeah, I think he's said it pretty good. You can overtake here.

Sebastian Vettel:
Yeah, it's not the easiest circuit but it's not impossible.

Q: (Andrea Cremonesi - La Gazzetta dello Sport).
Lewis, looking at the TV in slow motion, we saw that you touched the wall a little bit on the last lap. What happened? Did you feel something in the car or is it OK?

LH:
I did?

Q: (Andrea Cremonesi - La Gazzetta dello Sport).
...touched the wall a little bit.

Lewis Hamilton:
Yessss. That means I'm using all the road. I didn't mean to and I didn't feel it so it hopefully hasn't done any damage but I honestly didn't feel it.

Q: (Ian Parkes - PA).
Lewis, we've not seen too much emotion from you when you've got out of the car, either here today or following the victory in Italy. I'm just wondering if there's any particular reason for that.

Lewis Hamilton:
No, I'm pretty happy.

Q: (Ian Parkes - PA).
Really? Because you don't seem to be.

Lewis Hamilton:
I am.

Q: (Ian Parkes - PA).
Was it tough out there today, because obviously you're sitting there fanning yourself with a sleeve of your overalls? Was it a really tough one for you?

Lewis Hamilton:
It's easy for you to sit in your shorts - if you're wearing shorts - and T-shirt but I've got like three or so layers on and I've got this extra jacket on which doesn't help. It's pretty warm.

Q: (Matt Coch - pitpass.com).
To all three of you: Pastor mentioned tyre degradation. The supersofts don't last a great length of time. The guys behind you, the Mercedes guys, didn't set a time so they've got a choice of tyres. How worried are you about the start of the race and what the guys behind you are doing for when you come out of the stops?

Sebastian Vettel:
I think that hopefully by the time we pit we have a big gap to the guys who are maybe on a different strategy. I think it's difficult to know now how long we will be able to stay out. Obviously we have a rough idea. I think we're all on the same tyre and the same amount of laps so we will see when the lights go off but I think it will be a difficult race for tyre degradation and I think the difficulty is that we probably don't know what to expect so we will see tomorrow, I think.

Lewis Hamilton:
I think this weekend there seems to be a bigger gap between all the drivers and teams so perhaps that will allow... that will mean that there are bigger gaps throughout the race. Maybe.

Pastor Maldonado:
I think that especially at the beginning of the race we are in very similar conditions, especially with the tyres, so it's difficult to predict what's going to happen, because this is an unusual race, an unusual track but I think it's going to be very tight for everyone, especially at the beginning.

Q: (Kate Walker - Girl Racer).
Another question for all three of you: we heard today that the race contract has been extended for five years and that the organisers are open to the possibility of configuration changes. Are there any changes to the layout that you guys would like to see: hairpins, faster corners, anything like that?

Sebastian Vettel:
I think we've discussed it many times, every year actually, to find a better solution in turn ten which probably requires to take a little bit of land from the cricket club for those couple of days or maybe remove the pavement for three/four days. I don't know, but if you consider the costs for this whole event, I think taking a pavement away and putting it back on shouldn't be a big problem, but in terms of safety, yeah, I think that's one of the worst corners we have on the calendar, because you've got these big kerbs, big bumps and it's a bit tricky to find a better solution right now with the space we have, but I think that's something we need to work on.

Lewis Hamilton:
The same.

Pastor Maldonado:
The same.


» BACK TO CRASH.NET