Driver press con before Practice
We got to speak to Kimi Raikkonen, Nico Rosberg and Mark Webber before the practice...
Q: Nico, Mark and Kimi, Sebastian Vettel has won the last five races, he’s won both Indian Grands Prix from pole position, how do you beat a man in such form?
A (Rosberg): Things really haven't gone according to Mercedes' plan over the last couple of races have, but our cars look very competitive at the moment. I think the Red Bull cars are a bit quicker than ours. We really need to get everything right this weekend to beat the Red Bull cars.
Q: Kimi? Do you have some strategy you're working on this weekend?
A: I think I have to do a bit better in qualifying. That will give us a good chance of staying ahead of the competition for the entire duration of the race.
Q: And Mark, you were on pole in Japan, but it didn’t quite work out with Sebastian finishing ahead of you on the podium. Can Seb be beaten?
A: As you all have seen in the recent races, Seb's on a phenomenal run of late. And as you said his past performances in India have been pretty strong. I basically need to have the perfect weekend - qualifying on pole, a perfect race, a perfect strategy, perfect everything to get ahead of him.
Q: Max, in Japan you clocked your fastest qualifying lap beating both Caterhams and more importantly, your team mate Jules Bianchi. Is such an outstanding performance possible again this weekend?
A: I’ve had quite a few good laps in qualifying this year and but in Japan we just managed to get things right. It was a crazy last lap and I managed to just get enough space and just got the most out of the car. Again, I will do my best this weekend.
Q: And Giedo? Is there extra pressure on you, considering your recent surrendering of the 10th place in the Constructors table to Marussia F1?
A: Yes. For us it’s very important to get the 10th place back. I think the last few races we’ve seen that we’ve always been in front in the race compared with Marussia, so the one thing we need is a little luck and the only thing we can do is maximise ourselves, maximise the car, maximise the team and the rest is luck.
Q: So Daniel, has life changed post Rud Bull announcing you as their driver for next year? How will you cope with a teammate who's likely to be a four-time world champ?
A: Nah, not really. Around the time of the announcement it was pretty hectic with the media, but it’s nicely calmed down now. I’m sure once I hop in the car next year it will probably rise again. As for Seb as a teammate, I'm obviously aware of the competition I’ll be up against next year and slowly employing a few things to help me out for January and to settle in with the team. But for now, i'm still very much focussed on the rest of the year with Toro Rosso. I guess after Brazil I’ll make the conversion, start getting in the simulator and trying to figure out what makes Seb so fast.
Q: Nico, tell us about this morning, when you took a special bus ride with some under-privileged children enroute to the track...
A: Yeah, I’m involved in the Laureus Sport for Good programme, so this morning I took a bus journey to the track with a whole bunch of children from the local community. In the end just trying to be a little bit of an inspiration to them, to show how good sport is for personal development really, to learn about discipline and to learn to be with people and respect others. Also, to show them the importance of education. We basically had good time, played some football, and showed them the racing car.
Q: Kimi, this is your second year coming to race in India. Do you notice the popularity that you have? Does it give you extra motivation?
A: It's nice. But I’ve only really seen the hotel this morning, from the airport to the hotel, and the circuit. So, especially today there were not many people when we came here - so I feel it less than at many other places but I’m happy that there are fans here. This circuit is nice and hopefully we can have a good weekend for all of them.
Q: And Mark, are you more relaxed as the final race approaches or does the desire to get that one more win intensify race by race?
A: My mentality hasn’t really changed from the start of the year. I still enjoy driving the car with every intention of being the fastest, and finishing out in front.
Q: Would another win change your view of Formula One and how you remember the sport if you didn’t get one more win?
A: No, it wouldn’t change my decision to retire from F1.