Car 1 SEBASTIAN VETTEL, Position: POLE POSITION (3rd Practice – P1, 1:21.168)
“I think it was a very good session for us. The McLarens were very quick, so we’ve done the right thing and I felt much more comfortable this morning.
Q1 and Q2 was about getting through to the last session and I’m very pleased with the result. We changed a lot on the car overnight and the boys were working pretty hard and didn’t get much sleep, but I think if we have a result like this it’s the best way to say thanks, so I’m very happy. I’ve got the confidence back, today I felt much more comfortable in the car and I’m looking forward to tomorrow.”
Car 2 MARK WEBBER, Position: 6th (3rd Practice – P4, 1:21.645)
“Third row is not where I want to be – I didn’t get the best out of the car and out of the tyres. KERS was up and down a bit, I didn’t have it in Q2, I had it on the last lap in Q3, but in the end I wasn’t quick enough and couldn’t get the lap time. So, we have to come back tomorrow and see where we are.”
“A really close qualifying and a phenomenal effort by Sebastian to get the pole position on the last run, especially after a hard night by all the mechanics. We used the first of our jokers with the curfew, of which we are permitted four in a season, to spend the extra time working on car set-up.
He’s repaid them in the best possible way with pole position, which is a great start to the weekend but we’re set for a tough race tomorrow. Unfortunately Mark picked up a KERS issue in Q2; it came available again in Q3, but it hampered his preparation. Nonetheless we know Mark’s a great racer and I’m sure he’ll make good progress from there in tomorrow’s race.”
We used the first of our jokers with the curfew
CYRIL DUMONT (Renault):
“Another pole position, which is great. I would like to say a big thank you to all the boys working in the garage last night as they worked very hard and didn’t get much sleep. I think today showed it was worth it. Regarding Mark, I think he should have been higher, but he had a KERS issue. No one doubts that he will be back up there tomorrow.”
Standing on the podium as a winner is a rarity for many F1 drivers, but it’s even more infrequent for team members. Here, Head of Car Engineering, Paul Monaghan recalls…
THE FIRST TIME I… WENT ON AN F1 PODIUM (PAUL MONAGHAN)
“My first time on podium was in Valencia last year. Seb had come across the line and there was a great sense of satisfaction from winning the race, but there was also enormous relief that Mark had walked away from a very big accident, which was very worrying at the time. I was in the middle of thinking about that when I got the call to go up to the podium. I think it was Jonathan (Wheatley, Team Manager) who informed me that I had been chosen to represent the team. I was slightly surprised and shocked, but in a good way; all you can do is say, ‘Yes, ok, brilliant!’ The trouble is that you have no idea of where to go and what the protocol is! You’re trying to work out which end of the pitlane is the podium end and you have no clue how to get through to where you’re supposed to be.
Of course, I’d turned up with a camera in my pocket, a phone and a load of other bits and pieces
I wandered down the pitlane and saw Herbie Blash, he just smiled and said ‘Oh, it’s you this week is it?’ He sent me in the right direction and up behind the podium. Seb appeared, we had a bit of a giggle and Jenson was up there as well. I know him of old, so we had a quick chat and got ready to go out. Of course, I’d turned up with a camera in my pocket, a phone and a load of other bits and pieces. (Allsport’s) Alex Molina, who looks after the podium ceremony, said to me ‘you might not want to take that stuff out there’, because of the champagne. It’s just fantastic when you walk out.
To be honest, you don’t notice the crowd in the grandstands too much. You’re aware there’s a big crowd, but you’re focused on your own guys, and what was most pleasing for me was to see the sea of Red Bull people down below. It was great to be able to celebrate with them. They work far harder than I ever do and deserve every success they get. It’s more for them as a team than for you personally, you’re just going up to represent the winning constructor and all those people. As for the champagne part, I saw the bottle, I think it’s a Jeroboam, so pretty big, and Seb pointed it at me and I thought ‘Go on then, I reckon I can drink all that!’ I had a go and failed miserably, so I got properly drenched. But that’s what it’s all about. It might never happen again, so you have to enjoy it as much as you can. It really is amazing. Am I looking forward to the next time? Yes, please.”
By: Red Bull