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.”

McLaren Race Report Korean Grand Prix 2011

October 16, 2011

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2011 KOREAN GRAND PRIX

 

“Two brilliant racing drivers – who never give up”

 

Korea International Circuit, Sunday October 16

LEWIS HAMILTON

MP4-26A-03

Started:            1st

Finished:          2nd

Fastest lap:      1m40.459s (+0.689s, 3rd)

Pitstops:          Two: laps 15 and 33 (Op-Op- Pr)

2011 points:     196 (5th)

 

“This was one of my strongest races of the season. There was so much pressure from Mark [Webber] behind and it would have been so easy to make a mistake, lock up or go wide – but I’m really satisfied that I didn’t do so once. I believe that withstanding pressure is the mark of a world champion, and I think I showed that in today’s race.

“Our car started off reasonably well, but the front-end dropped away through the race. By the end, all the switches in the cockpit that could help me were adjusted to the maximum! The differential and front wing were at the maximum possible, and there was still nothing I could do.

“I was driving into corners with almost maximum lock and the car still wasn’t turning – so I couldn’t carry the speed through the corners, and that’s how Mark was able to catch me. It was only after the race that I discovered we had an issue with debris lodged in the front wing, and that’s probably what caused the understeer.

“This was a good, strong result for the team. The guys didn’t put a foot wrong all weekend, so we should be proud of today’s result – but, man, it was hard!

“I really hope we can carry our continued momentum through the next three races. It feels good to be back.”

JENSON BUTTON

MP4-26A-01

Started:            3rd

Finished:          4th

Fastest lap:      1m40.709s (+1.104s, 7th)

Pitstops:          Two: laps 13 and 34 (Op-Op-Pr)

2011 points:     222 (2nd)

“I don’t think I could have done much more than fourth today. I struggled to get rid of my understeer throughout the whole race, so fourth was a fair reflection of what the car was capable of today.

“On the first lap, I braked into Turn Three, but Felipe [Massa] went inside me and I got stuck on the outside and ended up losing quite a few places. At the end of the first lap, I was sixth, but I don’t think that poor first lap would have changed my result.

“Throughout the race, I didn’t have any front-end grip. I couldn’t get into the DRS zone either, so it was always tricky to try and close down the car in front when I lacked that straight-line advantage.

“I was passed by Nico [Rosberg] after my first pitstop when he ended up out-braking himself at the pit exit. The exit here is a bit unusual: if you leave the pits behind another car, then you’re probably going to be able to get ahead, because you get the benefit of the DRS into Turn Three. But Nico locked up out of the pits and ran wide, so I passed him, meaning he crossed the DRS line behind me and was able to use it to get past on the straight.

“I was able to nip back past pretty quickly and was able to close down on the battle for second between Lewis and Mark. But, towards the end of each stint, the front-end would drop away: I just couldn’t get close enough in the last sector. I added more front-end at the stops, but I had lots of understeer so I couldn’t get close enough to Mark [Webber] to use DRS. I think I only used DRS once in the entire race.

“Still, if this was a bad day, it wasn’t so bad!”

MARTIN WHITMARSH

Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

“I think Lewis’ drive today was utterly inspirational. He may be downplaying it, because he’s a perfectionist and he wanted to win, but to withstand such enormous pressure, for lap after lap, from a faster car, was a drive absolutely worthy of the great champions.

“His finishing position may only go down in the history books as another second place, but, make no mistake, this was a fantastic drive; beautifully assured and perfectly judged.

“To cap it all, the data showed that he was losing a significant amount of downforce from his front wing. After the race, we inspected Lewis’s front-wing and discovered that the left-hand slot-gap had become filled with congealed tyre rubber, doubtless a result of the marbles on the track.

“As a result, he was suffering with masses of understeer, which further hurts the tyres. In the circumstances, his was an absolutely fantastic drive because it would have been all too easy to have gone backwards when faced with such massive, and constant, pressure.

“Equally, Jenson posted another brilliant, measured drive. On Jenson’s car, too, we discovered after the race that he was also hurting from damage to his car – caused by a rock hitting the front wing. The resulting understeer doubtless also impaired Jenson’s ability to close down Mark in the track’s final sector, and therefore meant he was unable to mount a sustained attack in the DRS zone and secure third.

“Nevertheless, today showed that we have a very good racing car. But, more importantly, it showed that we have two brilliant racing drivers, who will fight from the start of the race to the end and who will never give up.

“Their spirited drives today are a just reward for the whole Vodafone McLaren Mercedes team, who have spent the last fortnight away from their homes, families and friends. While we must all acknowledge the great achievement of Red Bull Racing in securing the constructors’ championship today, I also want to pay tribute to the efforts and sacrifices made by our whole team over these past two weeks. They enabled us to score 65 world championship points in the last two races – a total that now consolidates our position in the constructors’ championship. So, after two fantastic races in Japan and Korea, I want to say a heartfelt ‘thank-you’ to the whole team. There are three races remaining in 2011 – and I know I speak for everyone when I say we want to win all three.”

Force India Singapore Grand Prix 2011

September 26, 2011

2011 Singapore Grand Prix Race Report – 25 September

“Force India delivered a strong showing in Singapore as the team picked up 12 championship points with Paul coming home in P6 and Adrian in P8. This is the team’s first double points finish since the Australian Grand Prix.”

P6 Paul Di Resta, VJM04/02
Tyre strategy: Soft, Supersoft, Soft

Paul: “My first Singapore Grand Prix was a lot of fun and I’m very happy with the outcome. I don’t think the safety car really helped us because I still had a lot of life left in the supersoft tyres in the middle of the race, but it didn’t really hurt us either. After that it was a case of managing my pace to Rosberg, looking after the tyres and bringing the car home.

“I was in free air for the final part of the race, which helped, and the pace was strong. It’s probably my best race of the season, but it’s the result of all the hard work behind the scenes. We came here with an upgrade package that has allowed us to gain performance in the race, gain tyre life, and we saw the benefits of that today.”

P8 Adrian Sutil, VJM04/04
Tyre strategy: Supersoft, Soft, Soft

Adrian: “We have been aiming to get both cars in the points for a while now, so we can be very happy with where we finished. The points we scored give us some breathing space over Sauber in the championship. It was quite a normal race for me, although I lost some track position under the safety car as Rosberg got ahead of me and stayed there until the end of the race.

“The final stint was quite difficult because I had to do about 30 laps on the soft tyres. I had Perez close behind me and then Massa was closing in fast on the final lap. Fortunately I had enough to hold on to eighth.”

Dr. Vijay Mallya, Chairman and Team Principal
“I have to say I am delighted with today’s result. We knew we had the performance in the car to get both drivers in the points, but to come away with 12 points is extremely satisfying. It strengthens our sixth place in the championship and moves us closer to fifth place. One of the key moments of the race was the safety car period, when we chose to pit both cars at the same time.

“The pit crew did an excellent job of stacking the cars and that played a critical role in where we ultimately finished. Both Paul and Adrian have performed brilliantly all weekend and haven’t put a foot wrong. With five races remaining we now need to build on this momentum so that we continue our strong finish to the season.”

McLaren German Grand Prix 2011

July 24, 2011

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2011 SANTANDER GERMAN GRAND PRIX

“It was a gripping race, real edge-of-the-seat stuff, and the victory was mighty satisfying”

Nurburgring, Sunday July 24

LEWIS HAMILTON

MP4-26A-03

Started:            2nd

Finished:          1st

Fastest lap:      1m34.302ss (1st)

Pitstops:          Three: laps 16, 31 and 50 (Op-Op-Op-Pri)

2011 points:     134 (3rd)

“Every win is special – but with all the emotion, effort and energy the team put into today’s victory, this one feels even more special than usual.

“Coming into this weekend, I said I’d take things one race at a time. So to win today is massively positive for us, but there’s a long way to go and it’ll be about consistency as well as speed from here on in.

“Driving lap after lap within tenths of each other was about trying to do everything as perfectly as possible – yet, being aggressive yet controlled, I felt the moves I made today were some of the most precise I’ve ever pulled off.

“Being able to drive with your head as well as your heart, and getting it just right, is massively satisfying.

“The fight for the world championship will be very, very, very hard now. We’re back in the fight though, and I really hope we can carry this forward and keep the momentum going.”

JENSON BUTTON

MP4-26A-04

Started:            7th

Finished:          Ret – 35 laps, hydraulic issue

Fastest lap:      1m36.258s (+1.956 s, 9th)

Pitstops:          One: lap 24 (Op-Op)

2011 points:     109 (5th)

“First, I’d like to congratulate Lewis on a fantastic victory this afternoon. He’s done a great job all weekend and this result gives everyone in the team a massive boost ahead of next weekend’s race in Hungary.

“As for my race, I had a terrible opening lap. I got too much wheelspin away from the line and had to fight my way back from 10th place. I got stuck behind Vitaly [Petrov], who was very difficult to pass because he moved a lot in the braking areas. But once I’d passed him, I enjoyed fighting back through the field.

“I’d just overtaken Nico [Rosberg] for sixth when my power steering started to get heavy. Soon after, we retired the car on safety grounds because we had a hydraulic issue. It was a very disappointing end, but these things sometimes happen in motor racing and you just have to put it behind you and move on.

“Already I’ve turned my attention to next weekend’s Hungarian Grand Prix, where I hope to have better luck. Vodafone McLaren Mercedes goes there on the back of a win and it’s my intention to be back on the podium for my 200th grand prix.”

MARTIN WHITMARSH

Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

“What can I say? Lewis was perfect in qualifying, and perfect in the race, and the result was perfect too.

“He made a brilliant start from the front row, storming past Mark [Webber] into the lead, and then nailed the first few laps.

“After that, the team made all the right strategy calls, and the pitcrew executed the pitstops faultlessly, under extreme pressure.

“It was a gripping race, real edge-of-the-seat stuff, with all three teams involved operating at the top of their form. When that happens, the victory is particularly hard-won – and mighty satisfying too.

Believe me, this success will be celebrated loud and long in Nürburgring and Woking tonight – and in Brixworth and Stuttgart too, homes of Mercedes-Benz HighPerformanceEngines, whose home Grand Prix this is. As always, their engine was superb today.

“Jenson had a difficult weekend, however, and his race ended prematurely today as a result of a hydraulic failure. He’ll be disappointed, inevitably, but he’s a magnificent team player, and a fabulous driver, and I’m sure he’ll bounce back in Budapest next weekend.

“As for Lewis, well, I reckon his 16th Grand Prix victory was one of his very best: a scintillatingly authoritative performance that all too clearly underlines what a fearsomely competitive individual he is.”

Force India German Grand Prix 2011

July 24, 2011

2011 German Grand Prix Race Report – 24 July

Force India delivered another excellent performance today as Adrian Sutil raced to a superb sixth place in the German Grand Prix. Teammate Paul Di Resta was the victim of a first lap crash, but recovered to finish P13. The eight points scored today move the team into 7th place in the Constructors’ Championship.

P6 Adrian Sutil, VJM04/04
Tyre strategy:option, option, prime

Adrian:  “It was a great race today and I’m so pleased to get this result for the team because we really deserved it. We had a great car all weekend and everything just went perfectly. The tyres lasted well and we definitely made the right calls with the strategy, which helped me beat Nico [Rosberg] in the final stint. It was actually quite a lonely race for me because I spent most of the time running in clean air so I could really show the potential of the car. To get this result in my home race also makes it extra special and I’d like to thank the fans for their support this weekend. But this is just the start because we still have lots of work to do in the coming races to score lots of points and catch up with the teams ahead of us.”

P13 Paul Di Resta, VJM04/02
Tyre strategy: option, option, prime

Paul: “Once again it’s a frustrating end to my weekend because I had a great chance to score some points today. I made a reasonable start, maintained my position and I was racing with Michael into the first corner. Then I got hit from behind, which must have been Nick [Heidfeld], and that spun me around and compromised my race. It’s a shame because we came here with a great package and we had a good strategy for the race. I pushed hard to recover, but points were just out of reach today. The good news is that Adrian has brought in a lot of points and shown just how competitive the car is.”

Dr. Vijay Mallya, Chairman and Team Principal
“Today has been a wonderful team performance and I’m delighted to see Adrian finish in sixth place – a result that everybody has been working hard to achieve. We have been a bit unlucky in the last few races, but today we demonstrated the true pace of the car and delivered the result to match it. The only frustration is that Paul was the unfortunate victim of a first lap accident with Heidfeld. Without this, I’m sure we could have had both Force Indias finish in the points. Even so, we welcome the eight points scored today – points that are important for our championship position and move us ahead of Toro Rosso.”

Mercedes GP Preview German Grand Prix 2011

July 21, 2011

image

“The 2011 Formula One season reaches its midway point this weekend with Round 10, the German Grand Prix, hosted at the historic Nürburgring circuit in the Eifel Mountains on Sunday 24 July. After the British Grand Prix on 10 July, the weekend will be the second home race in a row for the MERCEDES GP PETRONAS team.

“The circuit itself presents a complete challenge: The run from the start to the first corner at the Nürburgring is 500m, the furthest of all circuits used in 2011,there are three corners below 100 kph as well as three over 250 kph, so good performance at both low and high speeds is critical.

“Of course, the famous Eifel weather is always capable of throwing a joker into the pack – even in late July – so we need to remain adaptable and ready to seize every opportunity. Our race performance in Silverstone showed signs of an upward trend, and we hope that the practice sessions next weekend will allow us to extract further performance from our new aerodynamic package.

“We will certainly be giving everything in order the get the best possible result on home turf.”

Norbert Haug commented: “The story of the Silver Arrows began 77 years ago at the Nürburgring in 1934, and this year’s German Grand Prix will mark the first time that the modern Silver Arrows, and our MERCEDES GP PETRONAS team, will be racing at this historic circuit.

“This will be a very special weekend for our team, with many of our loyal fans and colleagues supporting Nico, Michael and Mercedes-Benz at our second home race in a fortnight. Formula One is on a high in Germany right now, and the crowd is going to be bigger than when we last raced there in 2009 – hopefully we will see a sell-out on Sunday and a fully packed Mercedes-Benz grandstand at the spectacular Turn 1 as well.

Ferrari Report British Grand Prix 2011

July 12, 2011

Microsoft Word - CARTA_INTESTATA_F1_2011.doc

Microsoft Word - CARTA_INTESTATA_F1_2011.doc

Unhappy Nico Rosberg

June 1, 2011

Nico Rosberg Mercedes W02

Nico Rosberg was very frustrated with his performance at Monaco: “The weekend started really well in practice, fully on it. Everything was looking good but then on Saturday I made a really stupid mistake. One of those mistakes that shouldn’t happen, can’t happen and will not happen again.

“I’m sure there will be better days. Montreal, we’ll be right back up there I’m convinced. We’ll just forget about Monaco and learn what we can. I totally destroyed the car, and that’s horrible. Standing there in the middle of the track, red flag, looking at my car just before qualifying and there was nothing left on the car. No corners. Everything was gone. The whole weekend, I thought it was over.

“Then a miracle. The team did an amazing job. Even Michael’s mechanics were on my car. It was just absolute mayhem and they put it together, unbelievably, in 97 minutes. Even at the beginning of qualifying there were still some missing parts, and 10 minutes later it was ready to go and off I went.

“Not my greatest day. With everything together, an absolute weekend to forget. I was supposed to be on the podium in the Monaco GP and I finished in 11th place. I’m sure there will be better days.

“Montreal, we’ll be right back up there I’m convinced. We’ll just forget about Monaco and learn what we can. I had said in Barcelona I was going to be attacking in Monaco and was going to be right up there, and that’s how I went into the weekend – I was convinced I was going to be on the podium but it didn’t quite go that way.”

Will Monaco Alter Circuit After Crashes?

June 1, 2011

Schumacher and Button Entering Casino Square

Tonio Liuzzi, Nico Rosberg and Sergio Perez crashed exiting the tunnel this year; Sergio Perez suffering concussion after a very heavy side impact with the crash barrier. When asked about his crash Tonio Liuzzi commented: “There was a mix of reasons. The tyres were reacting differently compared to last year’s Bridgestones, the balance of the car was difficult to find and the tarmac had got a bit worse this year.

“These problems are exacerbated for a small team like us because we don’t have as much downforce on the car and it’s not as pinned to the ground. As for changes to the circuit next year, it’s something that has already been discussed in a meeting and I think we will do something but Monaco is one of our favourite circuits because of the way it is and I’m sure it will still be good whatever they do next year.

“Either way we always love to go racing there.”

Eddie Jordan, former owner of Jordan Grand Prix, gave his views:  “It’s probably a combination of things the new aerodynamics, the tyres, the asphalt. It’s always been a tricky place. The FIA is required to protect the driver to the best of their ability.

“It has done a lot since then [1994] and it’s doing its best. After Rosberg’s crash they took away the kerbs. The place where Perez crashed is protected with special cushioning, but it needs to be considered now what more can be done.”

Martin Brundle, former Formula 1 driver and television commentator believes that action will be taken: “I’m sure they will need to make changes yet again to the tunnel exit chicane run off area, but Monaco will remain one of the greatest sporting challenges and that means it will remain dangerous too.”

McLaren driver, Jenson Button hopes that it can be made safer: “It’s a tricky corner and it’s an area where it’s very difficult to do anything about in terms of safety because it is what it is. It’s Monaco, a street circuit, but I still think we need to look further as to what we can do with the run off there.”

Nico Rosberg narrowly missed the crash barrier when he exited the tunnel after crashing into the wall: “I was very fortunate this morning that I completely missed that barrier. That barrier has been there for a long time and a lot of things have happened there.

“Maybe it’s time to reconsider because it should be pretty easy to get it out of the way and move it back 50 meters or something. I think it may be time to do that. Monaco is generally a dangerous track. It’s because you have a very high speed and you jump.

“ As you start braking you jump in the braking zone, and that’s a bit of a concern obviously.”

Problems Frustrate Nico Rosberg

May 23, 2011

Nico Rosberg – Mercedes W01

Nico Rosberg was disappointed that his DRS was not working and this prevented him from overtaking his team mate, Michael Schumacher: “There were some cool battles, but unfortunately it was a difficult race for me.

“The radio didn’t work so that made it difficult to understand the race because there’s so much you have to do with the settings and fuel saving, so that was a bit challenging then my rear wing also broke so I didn’t have the overtaking system and it made it very difficult to overtake. Otherwise for sure I could’ve moved up and I’m sure I would’ve finished a lot closer to the top because I think I had pretty good pace today.

“It didn’t look like he (Schumacher) had a good balance. I was pretty happy with my car, it felt good. I think I had good speed but there’s still a lot of work to do because unfortunately I don’t think we really managed to close the gap yet.”

Michael Schumacher commented: “We managed to make the most out of our possibilities today which is good news, especially for our guys who I am happy for.

“I had a good start; going right through the middle was tight but fortunately it worked out. Then the race was about holding position from there.

“We can be happy with the result but other than that, it was just tricky with oversteer, tyre degradation and poor balance to deal with. Still we achieved what we could have, and I look forward to going to Monaco.”

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