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Sun, 22 July, 2012Germany: Team personnel race quotes

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Luca di Montezemolo, Ferrari (President):
“I wish to thank the whole team and Fernando for this fantastic victory! Hockenheim is in a country that is home to some of the greatest car constructors in the world and that has a great Formula 1 tradition and a Ferrari was in the number one position on track, yesterday in the wet and today in the dry. I am proud of the amazing job the team has done at the track and the factory over these past few months. We must continue like this.”

Stefano Domenicali, Ferrari (Team Principal):
“It was like a 67 lap qualifying run! I find it hard to remember watching from the pit wall such a tight race from the start to the chequered flag. Fernando was perfect: not one mistake, not one hesitation, pushing to the maximum for an hour and a half. What a driver! The team were also great, managing everything to perfection. We expected to face some stiff opposition and that was the case: to keep ahead of them, we had to do a better job. A shame for Felipe who definitely had the pace to finish in the points: his race was ruined by the collision at the start and he is definitely not going through a lucky time at the moment! Now we come to what will be a key race, in just a week's time, in Budapest and then we will be able to pause for breath for a moment. We know we still have a lot of work to do, because we are still not the fastest. We have seen how quickly things can change this season, therefore we must keep concentrating to the maximum, especially on the reliability front. Finally, I wish to spare a thought for Valerio Catelani and Daniela Bertoneri, who lost their lives this morning in a tragic accident in the City of Lucca Rally: motor sport is still a sport where risk is ever present and one must never drop one's guard on the safety front. This has been the case in Formula 1 now for many years, thanks to the efforts of the FIA.”

Pat Fry, Ferrari (Technical Director):
“Once again, Fernando was fantastic. He made the most of pole at the start, then he waited until he had built up a useful window in which to make the first stop and managed to do so ahead of his main rivals. Once he was on the Mediums, the first few laps were rather difficult: both Vettel and Button were able to close up but our driver was brilliant in managing the situation and never once left himself open to an attack. Then it was Button who pitted early, but we had enough of an advantage to be able to react immediately without running the risk of being overtaken. The team was equally adept in the pit stops and the remote garage back in Maranello played an important part too, as was the case yesterday in qualifying. We are disappointed for Felipe who paid a high price for the collision at the start. We tried to get him back in the race by seeing if we could do just one stop, but it was clear that wasn't possible. A shame, because the pace he showed throughout the race would have definitely seen him finish in the points, even starting that far back on the grid. We still do not have the quickest car: we were aware of that and we saw it again today. We must carry on working hard to reach that objective, but it is definitely gratifying to end the first half of the season with our driver heading the classification...”

Martin Whitmarsh, McLaren-Mercedes (Team Principal):
“A great drive from Jenson today – a little frustrating to have started sixth, which meant he lost time at the start of the race [behind Hülkenberg and Schumacher], but he drove brilliantly to catch and battle the leaders. He wasn't quite able to bridge the gap to Fernando because, frankly, we were saving fuel at that stage, his rear tyres had gone off a little bit because he'd been behind the Ferrari for some time, and also because Fernando's never an easy driver to overtake. Indeed, Ferrari are doing a great job at the moment – but we know they're beatable. I think it's important to place some of the credit for Jenson's second place with our pitcrew: their second stop for Jenson was the fastest Formula 1 pitstop of all time, with a stationary time of just 2.31s. That's quite unbelievable and not only a testament to our belief in the processes and equipment we put in place to improve our performance, but also to the commitment and determination of the guys on the ground to improve and refine their technique. Well done to everyone for a quite phenomenal achievement! Lewis was incredibly unfortunate to be a victim of the Turn One debris – there wasn't anything he could have done to avoid it. Unfortunately, the puncture damaged the rear of his car, prompting us to monitor the data carefully to track all the vital signs. He had a good push in the middle of the race, but the car got worse and worse so it wasn't safe or sensible to keep him out there. It's a terribly disappointing conclusion to his 100th grand prix. Looking ahead to Hungary next weekend, we know we've got a good car and a good recent track record there – we won in 2005, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2011. Winning just before the shutdown is always positive because it provides you with great momentum across the summer break. The underlying news is that we were very competitive this afternoon in the Santander German Grand Prix. There's a lot of races ahead and I think we can have some great results.”

Eric Boullier, Lotus-Renault (Team Principal):
“We saw a great recovery from Kimi after yesterday's issues. It was a very strong and experienced drive coupled with a good strategy from the team. Starting in tenth and nineteenth positions we were always going to have our work cut out, so it's good to see Kimi score big points again and display strong race pace. With Romain it was a difficult first lap and he had to fight with a damaged car from then on. We have all seen him have very good weekends, so we need to ensure that he has solid weekends even when circumstances mean he starts from the back of the grid. As a team we had the same pace as the frontrunners so there is no question about our capacity to score podiums and maybe a win one day.”

Alan Permane, Lotus-Renault (Director of Trackside Operations):
“Romain was compromised by his first lap incident which severely damaged his floor, losing him a lot of downforce. With Kimi moving tenth to fourth we saw the strategy work as we wanted it to. We were hoping to be able to get on the podium but the first few laps cost a bit too much time. Ultimately we could run at the pace of the leaders, but we were just too far back to make the top three today. It's a familiar story we know all too well ; we have to qualify better to get stronger results. The wet weather of Saturday really hurt us in qualifying here, so hopefully we can bounce back in Budapest and do a good job.”

Ricardo Penteado, Lotus-Renault (Renault Sport F1 Team Support Leader):
“Hockenheim is a tough race on engines, with high top speeds around the first part of the lap but a twistier section in the back stadium section. Fuel consumption is also very high which was something we needed to watch throughout the race. It was a great performance from Kimi. He had the same pace as the top three, but starting in tenth he was not going to be able to realistically fight for the lead. Romain had a long race after the first lap incident so we decided to run some safer engine settings to be able to be more aggressive in the race where the engine will be used next.”

Peter Sauber, Sauber-Ferrari (Team Principal):
“We started from P12 and P17 and finished fifth and sixth. I think it's fair to say this performance was outstanding, and it was rewarded by 18 championship points. Congratulations to the drivers who both did an excellent job, and thank you to the whole team.”

Giampaolo Dall'Ara, Sauber-Ferrari (Head of Track Engineering):
“Considering where we started, I think we can say this was an excellent race from the team. On the driver side and the team side everything worked as it should. Possibly we were paid back in the race for the trouble we had yesterday in qualifying. Our approach yesterday was more biased towards dry conditions. The drivers were on different strategies, because we wanted to cover every possibility in the race. In the end both strategies worked out fine. I think today's race proved our car is very, very quick.”

Christian Horner, Red Bull-Renault (Team Principal):
“An interesting race. It was really close between Fernando, Sebastian and Jenson throughout, what turned out to be, a two-stop race. We lost a bit of time in the middle stint, when Lewis was un-lapping himself, which possibly allowed Jenson to get ahead at the pit stop, but then Sebastian gave it everything and made a move to get ahead a couple of laps from the finish at his home race. Mark's afternoon was always compromised by the gearbox penalty he had yesterday. We were aggressive at the first stop; it didn't work out as we hoped and he seemed to struggle a bit with the long run pace on the harder tyre today with Mark. I think that possibly the lack of running on Friday and key set-up time cost us there. It was also disappointing to receive the penalty after the race but we accept this. We leave Germany with points for both drivers and we maintain our lead in the Constructors'. We will now focus on the next race which is only one week away.”

Cyril Dumont, Red Bull-Renault (Renault Engineer):
“It was a very interesting race today, very tight between the three front cars. I think Seb did a very good job and had a strong drive. For Mark, he started eighth and finished eighth, so it was a long race for him. Regarding the discussions this morning, we were pleased with the Steward's decision that we had not breached a regulation. Formula One is a tight environment and we have to try to find every hundredth (of a second) that we can. We're not racing lawn-mowers and we were pleased to show that our package was very strong today – our pace was not far off the win.”

Ross Brawn, Mercedes (Team Principal):
“We ran the race as well as we could today, in the knowledge that we would have to make three pit stops. Some of our rivals on two-stop strategies faded towards the end but the drop-off was not sufficient for our drivers to be able to take advantage on fresher tyres. Michael and Nico put in consistent performances, pulled off good overtaking moves and we delivered six clean pit stops. Our strategy enabled Nico to climb eleven positions from his starting place, while Michael finished in seventh place for the second time in two weeks. We made the right decisions this afternoon but, after 67 laps, Michael found himself 29 seconds behind the winner. That shows we need to find more pace from the car.”

Norbert Haug, Mercedes (Daimler):
“Of course it is not pleasant starting third and coming home seventh. We were convinced that a three-stop strategy would be the fastest race for us, and we will evaluate whether a two-stop strategy could have brought us more. In any case, a podium was out of reach for us today and we certainly need further improvements. Nico put in a great drive, gaining 11 places from 21st to 10th. Like in Silverstone, our best-placed car came home roughly 30 seconds behind the winner, so we are missing about half a second per lap. We are now looking forward to doing a better job next weekend at the Hungarian Grand Prix.”

Vijay Mallya, Force India-Mercedes (Team Principal):
“Two important points scored today, but we were hoping for more considering our strong starting positions. We split the strategies with Nico stopping three times and Paul doing a two-stop race, and there was little to choose between them in the end. Both drivers battled hard, but it was difficult to defend on such an open track where it is easy to overtake. With today's result we have moved within a point of Williams in the championship and hopefully we can continue our points run in Hungary next weekend.”

Franz Tost, Toro Rosso-Ferrari (Team Principal):
“Yesterday, we saw that as expected, we were more competitive in the wet, which meant Daniel started from eleventh and Jean-Eric from fifteenth. However, in the dry, our car is lacking some pace at the moment, so to finish thirteenth and fourteenth is about the best we could have expected from a race with just one retirement and no possibility to gain any advantage through strategy. Jean-Eric's race was further complicated by an early puncture which meant he had to pit a total of three times rather than two. Back in the factory and wind tunnel, we are pushing hard to deliver new upgrades and we hope these will allow us to make a step up in performance terms.”

Mark Gillan, Williams-Renault (Chief Operations Engineer):
“We had a difficult day today with both cars races being compromised by damage. Pastor had good pace at the start of the race but on lap 12 he ran over debris that was lying in the middle of the track. The debris substantially damaged the left hand side of his car which lost him a significant amount of down force and ruined his race. Bruno had contact with Grojean on the first lap and picked up a puncture. He pitted for new tyres and a new front wing and pushed hard in order to try and stay on the lead lap. His pace was good throughout the race but ultimately he lost too much time on the initial lap. We now need to focus on next weekend and make sure we come back stronger in Budapest.”

Laurent Debout, Williams-Renault (Renault Sport F1 team support leader):
“While out of the points today, it is good to get a two car finish. Pastor's race was affected by an early incident where he lost some bodywork and therefore downforce, as was Bruno's with the front wing change, but engine-wise we've not had any issues. We will now go back to Viry to prepare for Hungary next weekend.”

Mark Smith, Caterham-Renault (Technical Director):
“We started both cars on the soft compound tyre and Heikki and Vitaly had good pace in the first stint. They were running with the pack ahead and managing the degradation levels well. In the first stops we put them both onto the medium compounds and again both cars looked strong, certainly quicker than we have been for much of the weekend. Just after halfway through the race Heikki started reporting understeer and much higher wear rates on the front tyres than we had anticipated so we brought him in earlier than planned. However, it was clear he had a problem with the car as we then had to being him in again on lap 53 for a nosecone change, in an attempt to sort the issue out, but that did not work and he hung on to finish 19th. Vitaly finished 16th after a very good performance, particularly towards the end of the race as he came under pressure from Senna who was on the soft compound tyres while Vitaly was on the mediums. He stayed calm, did not make any mistakes and his final position is a decent result for the work he put in today.”

Riad Asmat, Caterham-Renault (Chief Executive):
“We were looking good for about half the race, just about keeping pace with the cars ahead and both drivers managing their tyres well. From around the second stops the pace started to drop off and we were not able to maintain the speed we had for the first couple of stints. It is fair to say this has not been our strongest weekend. Both drivers gave as much as they could today but we just did not give them enough performance to really fight. We have work to do before the next race in Hungary to return to the level of performance we know we should be aiming for and that will need a big effort from the whole team to allow us to head into the August break on a positive note. What is encouraging is I know how determined everybody is to do that and we will not stop fighting until we have achieved what we set out to, so let's see where we are in a week's time and then take stock of what we can do to keep progressing in the second half of the season.”

John Booth, Marussia-Cosworth (Team Principal):
“A tough weekend on Timo's side of the garage did not improve today and it is frustrating for us that we were unable to conquer the problems for him ahead of his home race. The package generally is performing well and without the specific issues that Timo has been experiencing with his car, we know we are making good progress. Charles drove a very impressive race and the lap times show clear progress in line with our objectives for this batch of races following the introduction of the new package at Silverstone. That will provide little comfort for Timo, we know. There isn't much time before the next round in Hungary, but enough to undertake a thorough analysis of all the information available to us and work hard at resolving the problems to try to give him a better weekend there.”

Luis P้rez-Sala, HRT-Cosworth (Team Principal):
“Today we took another small step forward and that's always satisfying. We weren't able to run as we would have liked on Friday or Saturday but today both Pedro and Narain completed a very good race. The pace of both drivers was very good and consistent, and they fought throughout the entire race, which was a square off between Pedro, Narain and Glock. In the end, Pedro managed to overtake Timo and Narain was just about to do so but just came up short. We can say that we're very happy with the outcome and we hope to continue in this line at the Hungaroring next week.”

Paul Hembery, Pirelli (Motorsport Director):
“The teams had to take quite a flexible approach to their strategies, with so little dry running up to today, and as a result we saw a wide variety of ideas and tactics coming into play. The strategies meant that we saw an extremely finely balanced race, with the leaders rarely separated by more than a handful of seconds. With 20 laps still to go the top three were covered by less than three seconds and it stayed close to the end. The majority of teams opted for a two-stop strategy, running their two final stints on the medium tyre. The last stint was particularly crucial, with the drivers having to look after their tyres carefully in order to ensure consistent performance all the way to the finish. The top three drivers all showed great determination to maximise the potential of the medium tyres to the end.”

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