Brazilian GP winners' press conference

Q. Congratulations, Mika, on your third consecutive GP victory and the second of the year. Does it feel any different to have won here? MH: No, it is just as good. Obviously this Brazilian circuit is tougher than Melbourne, because...

Q. Congratulations, Mika, on your third consecutive GP victory and the second of the year. Does it feel any different to have won here?

MH: No, it is just as good. Obviously this Brazilian circuit is tougher than Melbourne, because of the bumps and because the cars are sliding more here. It is harder work than in Melbourne.

Q. You made a good start and rapidly pulled out a useful lead. Were you at all worried about David challenging you?

MH: No, not too much, because it is quite difficult here to follow anybody really closely. That is why I was not too worried: I knew he would not be able to get too close, because he would have lost downforce.

Q. You made one pit stop only, and you made it late. Was that as you had planned?

MH: That was planned and it worked really well. The thing I'm most happy about is the start. It really worked out well. It is very difficult here because it is uphill on the startline, so the car tends roll backwards. But it worked out really well, and that probably gave me the result that I had today.

Q. This is bumpy, tiring track. You said yesterday that it was one of your favourites. Is it still?

MH: It certainly is a very challenging circuit, and very hard to drive. You have to find the optimum line to get the best possible lap time. I really like it a lot.

Q. You won by 1.1 seconds. Did you ease up at the end?

MH: The rain started spitting a little bit at the end of the race ... the last three laps. I was really taking it easy and not using any kerbs or anything because I was just worried because you can lose the back end very quickly. I had it all under control.

Q. David, another second place. Are you pleased with this result?

DC: Yes, although obviously I would have been happier to have finished first. But Mika has had an edge all weekend, and under the circumstances six points is quite good.

Q. You are legendary for fast starts, but you didn't manage to get a particularly good one today ...

DC: No, I didn't get away quite as well as I would have liked. Drivers always have a book full of excuses, and my excuse today is that it is a hill start here, and using the foot clutch instead of the hand clutch meant that I had to brake and use the throttle at the same time with my right foot. Maybe that is more difficult than using the hand clutch, like Mika does. I am hoping to get it right in Argentina.

Q. There were a couple of occasions when you got close to Mika. Did you hope to be able to challenge him at any stage?

DC: I didn't expect to have any chances less he had a mechanical problem or made a mistake. At best I would only be able to run at the same pace as him, but I was mostly a little bit slower. In the last section I was having a lot of traction difficulties out of the last corner. It would have taken an incident for me to have got past him.

Q. Michael, after losing an engine in Australia you must be pleased to have some points on the board here ...

MS: Yes. Third place was the most we could have hoped for, and we achieved that. There was a good competition between me and Eddie at the beginning, then with Wurz and Frentzen. I am very pleased, because this is the first time we have run the new engine. It ran quite well: it is a great compliment to the team.

Q. What went wrong at your second pit stop?

MS: Yes, the problem was that the engine stopped for some reason, I don't know why. Usually we have an idle strategy to prevent this, but it died. The mechanics did a very good job to get it running again so quickly.

Q. Was there a possible one stop strategy for Ferrari and the Goodyear tyres?

MS: Sure, it would have been an option. But we chose to make two stops.

Q. You were almost a lap behind the McLarens here. Do you have any chance of being able to catch up some of the gap in Argentina?

MS: Yes, definitely. Argentina is sure to offer some closer competition. How much closer, though, I don't know. But we expect to make one step forward there, and then another in time for Imola.

Q. Mika, how will it be to go to Argentina with a maximum 20 points in the bag?

MH: It will give me great confidence. And although Buenos Aires is an extremely difficult track, I am really looking forward to going there. I expect the cars to be very close in terms of lap times, which will make things tough. But it is still nice to have these points in my pocket.


-David Goodwin

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Series Formula 1
Teams Ferrari , McLaren