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Sun, 8 July, 2012Britain: Team personnel race quotes

Christian Horner, Red Bull-Renault (Team Principal):
“An unbelievable day for the team. Starting the race, our strategy was slightly different to Ferrari with Fernando opting to start with the harder tyre, but we knew we could make our strategy work if we stuck to our plan. That was made slightly complicated by Felipe getting ahead of Sebastian at the start but then we were aggressive with the first stop and got Seb into clear air, which elevated him up the order. We then pushed as far as we could go on the option tyre with Mark, knowing that our time would come later in the race. After very strong middle stints from both drivers, we knew going into that final stint that we had a great chance and Mark started to catch Fernando, sometimes as much as a second per lap. He then made a fantastic manouvre around the outside which got him into the lead with four laps to go and he closed it out in style. Sebastian unfortunately ran out of laps. He was catching Fernando very quickly, but to have both driers up on the podium just up the road from the factory with so many members of the team here is great. We also had 25,000 pictures on each car supporting Wings for Life this weekend, which has raised a million Euros for the charity. So, after a tough start to the weekend, the sun finally shone for the fans and the team and it was a fantastic team result.”

Cyril Dumont, Red Bull-Renault (Renault Engineer):
“It was a close to perfect weekend. I'm pleased for Red Bull to win this race. Mark did a perfect race, I think he never stopped pushing. Seb almost got the one two today, but we got a double podium. Engine wise I'm pretty pleased that we didn't suffer any of the issues we saw in Valencia and everything was under control today.”

Stefano Domenicali, Ferrari (Team Principal):
“We have picked up thirty very big points here at Silverstone. Once again, Fernando drove a great race, for the umpteenth time this season and has gained points over the majority of his nearest rivals, but let me tell you that I am particularly happy with the display put on by Felipe, who was in the fight for pole yesterday and for the podium, right down to the last, today. It is a nice result for him, which is particularly important for us in terms of the Constructors' Championship, where thanks to the biggest points haul of the year, we have managed to move up to second place. We also did a good job in terms of the team, both when it came to strategy and how we managed the race on track. Obviously, when you lose the lead, just a few laps from the end of a race, there's a hint of regret, at least in the heat of the moment, but then it dawns on you that this is a really important result for both championships. I am glad that the spectators were finally able to enjoy a dry day at the track and were able to witness a great show: here, one can feel that the passion for motor sport is really strong and it is always a pleasure for us to come and race in front of such enthusiastic and knowledgeable fans. We were at the same level as the team everyone reckons is currently the best and be sure, it definitely is. And we also held our own against some very strong competition from other rivals. Certainly, there is much more to do to improve the car, especially in terms of top speed, where we are still suffering. We now come to a pair of back to back races in Hockenheim and Budapest, for which we will try and improve our performance level still further: that will be our primary goal over the next few days.”

Pat Fry, Ferrari (Technical Director):
“A very close race, from the start to the chequered flag. With Fernando, we were fighting for the win and with Felipe for the podium all the way to the finish, confirming that our package - the team, drivers, car - was competitive at this track. After two days affected by rain, today the skies cleared, but that was not something one could have predicted with absolute certainty the day before the race. We did not have much of a reference point in terms of tyre behaviour, because we only had FP3 in which to assess performance, especially over a long run. That was partly why we opted to run different strategies with our two drivers and, all in all, we have no regrets, given how things went: clearly, on the Softs both Red Bulls were quicker than Fernando and we need to look at how we can improve our tyre performance in similar situations in the future. Fernando and Felipe both drove impeccably throughout the race, and the pit stop guys were faultless whenever the call came. This championship is very close and so it is vital to always bring home as many points as possible. I think today we achieved that goal and it is very significant that we have managed to make up no less than two places in the Constructors' classification. We must continue to push on car development, because we are not yet the quickest: there is still much work to do to achieve this objective.”

Eric Boullier, Lotus-Renault (Team Principal):
“It was a difficult weekend where weather conditions made for something of a lottery in qualifying, but once again we have had a good race. If we want to do better, we have to improve our starting positions. Romain had a battle to come back from an early stop to replace his front wing; he was very fast and very strong from then on. Kimi had a very good race too. As a team, we had good strategies, our car was fast and consistent and fifth and sixth position yield good points. Once again our car was strong on a different circuit and in a variety of conditions. We're still missing something to get the final piece of the jigsaw, but it's a nice frustration to have.”

James Allison, Lotus-Renault (Technical Director):
“We saw really strong drives from both Kimi and Romain. We didn't have the best grid positions but both drivers made up places in the race. The E20 delivered performance that was the equal of any car today, and it's encouraging that even with our less than promising starting positions, we've held on to third position in the Constructors' Championship. I think we'll only be stronger in the second half of the season and when everything falls into place in qualifying and the race we'll truly be a force to be reckoned with.”

Ricardo Penteado, Lotus-Renault (Renault Sport F1 Team Support Leader):
“We introduced new engines here as Silverstone is a power sensitive circuit where extra horsepower can make a big difference. Fifth and sixth positions are relatively good results to take away. It was a shame that Romain had to make an early stop after the incident as his pace was very strong; to go from last to sixth at the end demonstrates this. Kimi could also have gained one position had he not been held up by Schumacher, but most importantly we retain third in the championship.”

Ross Brawn, Mercedes (Team Principal):
“We were the fourth best team today and that was reflected in Michael's seventh place finish on the road. Clearly, our pace in the dry didn't match our competitiveness yesterday in the wet, and we will have to take a good look at the data to find out why. Both drivers experienced graining on the option tyre this afternoon - Michael in his first stint, Nico in the final one - and that certainly compromised our performance at important parts of the race. Michael drove solidly to seventh place, defending his position against the cars around him, and he was particularly competitive in the final stint - right up to setting his fastest time on the final lap of the race. Nico's race was compromised by a bad start, which left him 15th at the end of the first lap. From then, he was fighting an uphill battle, and it was hard to find clean air for him to run in, which further complicated things. We can take positives from our weekend - including our much-improved wet weather performance - and we will work hard to learn our lessons from today before Hockenheim.”

Norbert Haug, Mercedes (Daimler):
“Not a great result for us today after a good qualifying performance from Michael yesterday. We expected rain this afternoon and Michael's car was not ideally balanced during the first half of the race. Michael's lap times in the second half were much better compared to the fastest cars at the front and he finally finished 7th after 52 laps, 30 seconds behind winner Mark Webber, after overtaking Lewis Hamilton with five laps remaining. Nico started 11th and lost four places during lap one which prevented him from scoring points today. We now are looking forward to our next home race in two weeks at Hockenheim, where we will welcome the spectators with a very special, cost-free programme at the Mercedes Grandstand.”

Martin Whitmarsh, McLaren-Mercedes (Team Principal):
“A dry race wasn't what we were expecting – and, undoubtedly, had it been a wet race, as was predicted, our competitiveness relative to that of our opposition would have been significantly enhanced. Lewis drove an excellent stint on his initial set of Prime tyres, making consistent progress throughout the first third of the race. Thereafter, with hindsight, perhaps we should have given him more laps on his Options, because, from the very beginning of his third stint, he was never happy with his second set of Primes. For Jenson, the 2012 Santander British Grand Prix was always going to be a bit of a struggle, starting it as he did from 16th place on the grid. Again, as with Lewis, had it rained earlier this afternoon [rather than only after the race had ended], as it did yesterday and on Friday, and as it was forecast also to do today, undoubtedly he'd have been able to make up more places, more quickly, than in the event he did. As it was, he earned a single world championship point for his efforts, which was meagre reward for a pretty gutsy performance. Next we travel to Germany, and Hockenheim, the home Grand Prix of our engine partners Mercedes-Benz, whose Mercedes AMG HighPerformancePowertrains V8s have served, and continue to serve, us so well. But, before then, we'll go back to Woking [Surrey, UK], to the McLaren Technology Centre, with a determination to work as hard as is humanly possible to develop our car such that we can put on a fine and competitive show in the homeland of the famous three-pointed star.”

Mark Gillan, Williams-Renault (Chief Operations Engineer):
“Both Pastor and Bruno had very good starts and were pushing hard in the initial stages of the race. Unfortunately Pastor was involved in a racing incident with Pérez on his second stint which lead to a premature pitstop for a damaged rear-right tyre which ultimately compromised his race. After the race the stewards issued Pastor with a reprimand which as a team we accept. Bruno ran an excellent race and despite a small spin in the first stint finished in ninth having attacked and then defended his position very well in the closing stages of the race.”

Peter Sauber, Sauber-Ferrari (Team Principal):
“I am obviously hoping our three mechanics make a speedy recovery from their injuries and are fully fit again very soon. Up until Kamui's second pit stop, during which he lost 15 seconds, he had a very good chance of scoring points. Sergio had improved from 15th on the grid to make it into the points, and it is not for the first time we have seen him do this. We were looking forward to an exciting race, with good results possible for us. The accident between Sergio and Pastor Maldonado will be investigated by the FIA, but whatever happens it was the end of Sergio's race.”

Giampaolo Dall'Ara, Sauber-Ferrari (Head of Track Engineering):
“Our race pace was good, our strategy was going quite well and both drivers recovered some positions at the beginning. Sergio was planning on a shorter stint on the soft tyres and longer stints on the hard. We timed the pit stop quite nicely and were able to get up to Maldonado, who was running in front of us, but then there was an accident. For Kamui we were actually targeting a longer run on the hard tyres and were being quite patient in the beginning, but then with a stronger pace by the end on the soft. All in all it was working, but the incident during the pit stop cost us too much time. Part of the race was definitely lost yesterday and the two incidents today completed a bad weekend.”

Vijay Mallya, Force India-Mercedes (Team Principal):
“We should have scored points today so we leave our local race feeling disappointed. Nico drove a strong race and looked set for ninth, but we lost out to Senna with a couple of laps to go. Unfortunately in his eagerness to regain the spot Nico ran wide at Copse corner and dropped out of the points, which is frustrating. I'm also disappointed for Paul who retired after just a couple of laps. His car would have been well suited to the dry conditions today and we never got a chance to see what he could do in front of his home crowd. It's still unclear what caused the puncture, but we suspect contact in the first couple of corners.”

Franz Tost, Toro Rosso-Ferrari (Team Principal):
“While the tenacious British fans finally enjoyed a sunny day's racing and no doubt enjoyed watching our friends from Red Bull, who are based just a few miles away from the circuit, take a well deserved win, we would have preferred to see some more rain today. It was clear right from the start of the weekend that we were more competitive in the wet, however we did not get it quite right in qualifying and with Jean-Eric Vergne, we also had to contend with his ten place grid penalty. In the race, he made a great start, moving up seven places on the opening lap. Daniel Ricciardo on the other hand, did not get off the line well and so our two drivers found themselves fighting each other for most of the race, eventually ending up 13th and 14th with Daniel and Jean-Eric respectively.”

Mark Smith, Caterham-Renault (Technical Director):
“Vitaly unfortunately suffered an engine failure on his first lap out of the pits on his way to the grid and that was it for his race. On Heikki's side of the garage, once he had passed the slower cars around him he was basically on his own for most of the race. He drove well and did not make any mistakes and that was all we could ask of him today. Now we will go back to the factory and work on all the data we have taken from today and the whole weekend. On Friday we are running the aero test we had to postpone earlier this week because of the weather and that will help us make sure we can optimise the whole package we brought to Silverstone. We know we have progressed but we just were not able to show it today so we will focus on doing so at the last two races before the summer break in Germany and Hungary.”

Tony Fernandes, Caterham-Renault (Team Principal):
“A weekend of real highs and lows, for me and the whole team. Sunday started with an incredible experience when I took part in the Olympic torch relay in Huntingdon. Our team Premium Partner GE invited me to carry the torch and I was delighted to accept such a generous offer. I was also very proud to see two of the key men at QPR join us as guests on track – defender Clint Hill who was our player of the year last season, and CEO Philip Beard. Seeing them chatting so comfortably with everyone in the F1 team shows how close-knit our motorsport and football families are and that is a very special feeling. On track the race clearly did not start as we had planned with Vitaly suffering an engine failure before he even reached the grid. It was good to see how well he and the team dealt with that disappointment, especially considering how important it is for us to put the new upgrades through as much track time as we can to really get the most out of them. Heikki drove his usual strong race, pushing from the first lap until the last and the boys in the pitcrew and on the pitwall worked flat out to give him a chance to fight. Once we have been able to get the most out of the updates I know we will take a significant step forwards and that is very encouraging, for me, the team and partners like GE who all share our dream of one day fighting for the top step of the podium.”

John Booth, Marussia-Cosworth (Team Principal):
“We came into race day having experienced a fairly frustrating qualifying session when we felt a bit short-changed by our result. We are chipping away at the gap to Caterham and the midfield pack ahead, but we are not yet in a position to get to Q2 on merit and so we need to be quick to seize every opportunity that comes our way. Opportunity knocked yesterday, but at the last minute the weather worked against us. Today, both Timo and Charles drove a very solid race to bring both cars home and the team performed with the highest degree of professionalism. We have finished in our usual position in the pecking order, but the underlying result is that we have clearly moved away from HRT and closer to Caterham. The strategy for Timo worked particularly well and with Charles we worked well to adjust his strategy in order to make it work. The pit crew executed four good pitstops to ensure we could make the engineering calls stick. It has been a tough weekend for everyone in the team, but we can be pleased with the job we have done here at Silverstone and also encouraged by the positive signs we are seeing with Maria.”

Luis Pérez-Sala, HRT-Cosworth (Team Principal):
“Overall today has been positive, since we performed better than expected at such a complicated circuit, even fighting with our rivals. Pedro did a one-stop strategy and his tyres held out well. On the other hand, with Narain we went for a two-stop strategy which we could have perfected a bit. But we had to risk it. We still have to improve on pit stops but the team is looking looking calmer and more reassured. We're advancing and improving which is the important thing. On another note, it looks like the information we're receiving regarding Maria's state is positive and, although we have to be cautious, we're very happy to hear this and we hope she continues to improve.”

Paul Hembery, Pirelli (Motorsport Director):
“After a wet weekend so far, it was great to see the sun shining for the start of the British Grand Prix and a fully dry race. But this presented its own challenges for the teams, as they had very little information on which to base their strategies. With no rubber having been laid down on the track during Friday and Saturday, the track also evolved notably during the race. Everyone had their own thinking on the best way forward, which was reflected in the huge variety of start tyre choices, with most drivers having an ample selection of unused slicks at their disposal. Mark Webber and Red Bull chose tactics that paid off brilliantly. Like everybody else, we've been hugely impressed by the dedication and commitment of the fans this weekend, who have endured some extremely arduous circumstances, but were finally rewarded with another great race.”

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