Mercedes Preview Indian Grand Prix 2011

October 23, 2011

Nico Rosberg

Michael Schumacher, Mercedes
“For the next race, we are heading to India for the first time; a country which a lot of people tell me is fascinating. I’m looking forward to experiencing this new culture and seeing the track for the first time. I am sure we will be impressed with what has been done there. There has been a lot of interest in the build-up to the event, and therefore hopefully we will entertain a lot of new fans in India.

“I’ve always been happy to welcome new tracks on the calendar and enjoy the challenge of adapting to them. The outcome of the last race in Korea was unlucky for us, therefore I am extra-motivated to score some points next weekend, and reward the good work of the team.”

Nico Rosberg, Mercedes
“This will be my first visit to India, and it will be very exciting for me to discover the new culture. I am planning to spend a few days in the country and looking forward to doing some sightseeing, particularly making a visit to the Taj Mahal. I hope the first race in India will be a great show for all motorsport fans there, and a big success.

“I enjoy going to new tracks for the first time as I tend to learn them quickly, and it will be very interesting to set the car up as there will be so many unknown points. I hope to be able to fight in amongst the top six cars again, like during the last race in Korea, but this time hopefully I will be able to stay ahead of one of them until the end of the race.”

Ross Brawn, Mercedes team principal
“The Indian Grand Prix will be a new adventure for Formula One, and we are all looking forward to experiencing the country and the Buddh International Circuit for the first time next week. A tremendous amount of work has gone into the new venue and the preparations for this inaugural event, and the interest in India seems to be growing daily. In the second most populous country in the world, this can only be good for Formula One as we continue to expand our fan base by taking the sport to new markets.

“The circuit itself looks to be an interesting challenge and we have been preparing back at the factory with circuit maps, simulations and models. You can do a great deal of work beforehand but nothing replicates the feedback from the drivers on their first laps out on the new circuit on Friday. With just three races remaining, we will be aiming to finish the season on a high and pushing hard to score good points at each one.”

Mercedes Expect to Perform Well in Germany

July 19, 2011

Michael Schumacher and Jenson Button

Michael Schumacher is looking forward to his home Grand Prix and is hopeful of having a faster car. “We saw some improvements over the Silverstone weekend with our new exhaust system, along with improvements to how we work with the tyres, so we go to the next race weekend with a good feeling added to our fighting spirit.

“We definitely want to show our home crowds our best level of performance possible. This season has been a difficult one for performance predictions so far; however I can predict one thing for sure: the extra boost we are receiving will be transformed into extra motivation.

“It will be the first time that I race through the corner which is named after me [turns eight and nine], and obviously I would like to believe that this is not only making me proud, but also even faster.”

Mercedes Team Principal, Ross Brawn, is also expecting an improvement in performance. “Our car showed positive signs of improvement with the new upgrade package and exhaust system in Silverstone, and we have been working hard since then to further enhance our understanding of its performance capabilities.

“We are hopeful of continuing this progression and putting on a good performance next weekend, giving our drivers the opportunity to show what they can do in front of their own supporters.”

Two DRS Zones for Canadian Grand Prix

June 8, 2011

McLaren MP4-26

Paddy Lowe, McLaren’s Technical Director is unsure about how much overtaking will take place in Canada this weekend following the the FIA’s introduction of two DRS zones. “It’s something the FIA have developed as a solution. This is the first race at which they’ve had the system fully commissioned in order to run two sectors.

“They clearly feel that will assist overtaking since that’s the point of the DRS. Whether it does or not remains to be seen. Our own analysis – which hasn’t been extensive, I must admit – seems to say that it may not particularly help.

“The role of DRS will play out mostly in the initial straight from the hairpin and the second straight may just aid with performance.

“In theory, if you’ve overtaken on the first straight, ironically the guy ahead will be able to continue to use his DRS on the second straight, even though he’s already overtaken, and open out a bigger gap so we’ll have to see how that pans out.”

Norbert Haug, President of Mercedes Motor Sport is looking forward to its introduction: “On the sporting side, we will be able to assess the impact of two DRS zones in race conditions for the first time, which could contribute to making the action even more exciting.

Ross Brawn, Mercedes Team Principal thinks that it will improve the action:“We have two DRS zones which will increase overtaking at a circuit where passing was already possible. With the combination of DRS and the tyres, this should lead to an exciting and eventful weekend.”

Mercedes Continuing to Improve

May 16, 2011

Nico Rosberg – Mercedes W01

Ros Brawn is looking to maintain the cars’ pace consistently. “The last two races in Turkey and China have proved that we can be quick in certain conditions, but we need to focus on achieving that level of performance consistently over the entire race weekend.

“We will have an aerodynamic development package for the Spanish Grand Prix, along with refinements to our suspension package, which should help to find the consistency in the car that we are looking for.

“The Circuit de Catalunya is such a familiar venue to the teams that we should be able to maximise our practice time to focus on this, and I hope to see another step forward and a positive weekend.”

Nico Rosberg believes that Mercedes is now  serious contender. “Our upward trend is clear for all to see, even though we still have a little more progress to make in race configuration compared to qualifying.

“I’m looking forward to Barcelona, where we will also be introducing an update package for the car, and I’m excited to see how it works.

“We showed a good level of performance at the final winter test on this circuit, and hopefully we can translate that into a strong result this weekend.”

Michael Schumacher, however, has not had the return to Formula 1 that he had hoped for, and many of his followers expected, being overshadowed by his younger team mate.  “While I was not happy with my weekend in Turkey, there have been clear signs of improvements for us as a team, which obviously push and re-boost my motivation even more.

“It’s more than encouraging to see that the hard work of the team is starting to pay off. We are all determined to make progress.”

Mercedes Management Contemplate Turkish Grand Prix 2011

May 7, 2011

Norbert Haug

Norbert Haug

“The Turkish Grand Prix is the first race of the European season in the 2011 Formula One world championship. It is a demanding circuit for both cars and drivers, and Turn Eight is the longest corner of the entire season.

“Nearly 70 percent of the 5.338 km lap is spent at wide open throttle which means that, in addition to the chassis and tyres, the engine is under considerable load.

“At the last race in China, our team took a step up in competitiveness relative to the first races in Australia and Malaysia.

“Our aim is to consolidate this level of performance in Turkey before building on it.”

Ross Brawn

“The team and drivers have worked extremely hard in the short break before the European season begins to ensure that we continue to move forward. We have a fundamentally good car and we need to achieve its full potential in the races to come.

“The Chinese Grand Prix reminded everyone at the team what it is like to fight for a race. We didn’t succeed on that occasion but it’s a feeling that we would like to experience more often.

“When the car is working properly, we can be more competitive and the solutions we are bringing to Turkey will help us achieve this level more consistently.

“However, we also know that we need to push for more performance if we want to fight regularly at the front. The first three races have been a challenge but we have pulled together and will continue working hard to make progress.”

Mercedes Aiming to Challenge the Leaders

April 29, 2011

Michael Schumacher Mercedes W01

Michael Schumacher is hoping for a good race at Istanbul: I know that the team have been working very hard to continue the progress that we made during the last race weekend in China and, with the help of some developments planned for Istanbul, I am confident that we can enjoy an equally positive weekend.

Nico Rosberg knows that the car has potential: “We had a more difficult start to 2011 than we had expected, and the first three races felt a little like a rollercoaster of emotions.

“We were all disappointed in Melbourne and Malaysia but, after leading the race in Shanghai, we have confirmed the potential of our car. The team did a very good job to take a step forward and we learned a lot from the weekend.”

Ross Brawn was pleased that the car headed the field in China for some laps but more work is needed to take the fight to the leading teams:  “The team and drivers have worked extremely hard in the short break before the European season begins to ensure that we continue to move forward.

“We have a fundamentally good car and we need to achieve its full potential in the races to come. The Chinese Grand Prix reminded everyone at the team what it is like to fight for a race. We didn’t succeed on that occasion but it’s a feeling that we would like to experience more often.

“When the car is working properly, we can be more competitive and the solutions we are bringing to Turkey will help us achieve this level more consistently. However, we also know that we need to push for more performance if we want to fight regularly at the front. The first three races have been a challenge but we have pulled together and will continue working hard to make progress.”

 

Mercedes Expect Better Results in Malaysia

April 2, 2011

Michael Schumacher Mercedes W01

Nico Rosberg is keen to show the potential of the Mercedes. “We had a tough weekend in Australia but the team has worked hard and we are confident that the car will be running reliably in Malaysia. Melbourne is a unique circuit and we know that we will have a much better understanding of our level of performance after the next races. I think we can surprise people next Sunday. We know that the car is fast from the last test in Barcelona, so now we have to work on proving that potential.”

His team mate, Michael Schumacher, echoed this thoughts. “There is absolutely no doubt we want to do better than in the opening race, which was a disappointment for all of us. We clearly see that as a challenge and it is much too early to write us off. Everybody in the team remains positive and is in a fighting mood so I expect a better weekend for us to come, a weekend we can build on.”

Team principal Ross Brawn hopes to eliminate the problems that the team encountered in Australia. “We endured a difficult weekend at the first race of the season, despite having reasonable expectations after completing a successful testing programme in Barcelona. We suffered a number of problems which resulted in a far from optimum car for qualifying and the race, and then were unlucky to suffer a disappointing double retirement for Michael and Nico.

“Our priority since Melbourne has been to regroup back at our factories in Brackley and Brixworth, to review the weekend in detail, and to establish the best way to achieve the full potential of the car from Malaysia onwards. How we respond to the disappointment of Melbourne, and the challenges we faced, will be a true measure of our team.”

Brawn Dissatisfied with Performance

March 29, 2011

Mercedes W01

Ross Brawn was disappointed that sufficient time had not been spent on setting up the balance of the cars in deference to other developments. “We took an approach over the winter which culminated in the final spec of car in Barcelona testing. Barcelona is a track that we’ve never been super strong on, but the car was very good there.

“Michael was very happy with the car on the last day. We swapped around the drivers to give Nico an hour or two in the car and he thought it was quite a different car to what he had been experiencing up until then so we came into this weekend with reasonable confidence that we could do a good job but we had a very messy weekend.

“Cars these days have got a lot of interesting systems on and we had a job keeping everything running, which means that we haven’t done the fundamental work of getting the car balanced and finding the right set-up.

“It has been a disappointing weekend and we should have been able to do better than we achieved. The problem we have got is that the drivers don’t quite know what car they are going to have each time they enter a corner. The inconsistency is the thing that makes it difficult for them.

“We have had difficulties with a number of systems on the car. There are a number of things that have got messy this weekend and the main difficulty is that drivers and engineers have not had a consistent enough car to work on.”

“There are a series of upgrades planned, but what we have got to focus on is using what we’ve got already. The fundamentals are there and we’ve got to get everything to work well together over a weekend, and then we can show a much stronger performance.”

Brawn: Engineers Must Challenge the Boundaries

March 16, 2011

R31 Launch at NEC Birmingham

A number of teams have introduced innovative ideas and components to their cars this year but the most radical is Renault’s forward facing exhaust system which exits by the sidepods. Other teams have followed suit as this system appears to have great benefits. Ross Brawn suggests that this could have an even greater impact than that of he double diffuser two years ago.

“It is a significant area and maybe more significant than the double diffuser in terms of performance and of course the teams are all working with their engine partners to work out how to get the most out of the exhaust energy so that is the new interesting area of development.

“It is in the spirit of F1 to push these boundaries and find new areas. We may find in the future that that is not where we want to be and we will change the regulations to control it, and in 2013 we only have one exhaust and it is a turbo engine and the whole thing will change again so there are lots of differences coming but it is a fascinating area and all within the spirit of F1.

“I think the nature of F1 is that the engineers are always challenging the interpretation of the regulations. It is very, very rare for people to cheat in F1 and what all the engineers do, and what I expect my engineers do, is to challenge the boundaries of what you can do and obviously the double diffuser was one of those boundaries.

“The exhausts – I don’t think they are challenging the boundaries so much, I think they are a clever idea but I don’t think there is any regulatory problems with the exhaust systems so I don’t see that as being overly controversial. There have been clarifications in the last week or two about the materials and one or two other things, but they are not really that controversial.”

Daimler and Aabar Jointly Own Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Team

February 28, 2011

Mercedes W01

Daimler AG, the parent company of the Mercedes-Benz car company, has increased its stake in Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Team to 60% and Aabar Investments PJS (Daimler’s largest shareholder) now owns the remaining 40%. Daimler AG’s CEO, Dr Dieter Zetsche, confirmed the purchase of the remaining shares in the company:

“This majority stake holding demonstrates our determination to build a long-term Formula One involvement on an even more successful platform. Our company’s founders invented the automobile 125 years ago and the very first Mercedes was a racing car. These are the reasons why we see our Formula One programme as an important element of our brand history. The acquisition of a majority stake holding in our Silver Arrows team sends a clear signal that we intend to achieve technical and sporting success on world motorsport’s biggest and most important stage, and to do so in cost-effective conditions.”

Norbert Haug, President of Mercedes Motor Sport stated: “It doesn’t change a lot in practical terms, but it shows our commitment. This is the foundation of a long-term investment and strategy. We are investing in the future of F1 and that’s a learning process, but there are clear limits from the resource restriction agreement and we think that we have a good baseline for the future. We think that we have very good people.”

“There were constructive discussions and everyone was in agreement that this was the right way to go. All of those shareholders, if you historically look back, did not plan to be the owners of an F1 team. Everyone involved agreed that it was a logical step, so we are happy about it.”

Ross Brawn, who ran the team under his own name in 2009 after the withdrawal of Honda commented: “Daimler and Aabar’s acquisition of the remaining 24.9 per cent stake in Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix will be a further step in the consolidation and strengthening of our team for the future. Motor racing, particularly Formula 1, is a very specialised industry, and we are privileged to have such strong and understanding partners as Daimler and Aabar to support our joint ambitions.

“I remain fully committed to our team for the long-term, along with the management team and all of our employees. We all look forward to the challenge of making our team successful, and proudly representing Mercedes-Benz and the racing tradition of the Silver Arrows.”

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