Jean-Eric Vergne: "I’m looking forward to this race, because driving a Formula One car at Silverstone is really thrilling."
Silverstone is very popular with the drivers because it is all about high speed corners and a large percentage of the lap is spent with the driver’s foot buried on the accelerator pedal, with an average lap speed of over 200 km/h. Clearly therefore, aerodynamic efficiency is of paramount importance as will be the performance of the power unit.
However, engineers cannot just concentrate on the fast bits, because the slow sections, at turns three and four and then six to seven, as well as those near the end of the lap at 16 and 17 can have a very marked effect on your lap time. In order to be quick in these sections, you want to have a good mechanical set-up as well as ensuring the power delivery is easy for the drivers to manage.
The drivers get a demanding physical workout from riding the kerbs and dealing with the bumps and the tyres also have to work hard, with graining on the front left always waiting to upset matters, particularly if it’s cold. Finally, as you’d expect at what was an old airfield, the wind can play havoc with the balance of the car at high speeds, so the drivers must provide accurate feedback, in order for the engineers to fine tune the front wing and diff settings to suit the conditions.
Jean-Eric Vergne: It’s a track I love, one of the best on the calendar, because of all the high speed corners. It is very important to have an excellent aero package here as it is all about those high speed turns. With this year’s car it might prove quite tricky as everyone has less downforce to work with. It will be interesting to see how the new type of Formula One cars perform around this circuit. I’m looking forward to this race, because driving a Formula One car at Silverstone is really thrilling. I even lived in Milton Keynes for two years, so I know the area well.”
Danil Kvyat: I really like this track, with plenty of great sections, like Maggotts and Becketts and Copse. The new section is quite technical. The weather can have an effect of course, especially the wind which can catch you out in the high speed corners. Track conditions, wind, it’s England. It’s a bit of a home race for me as I have a flat in Milton Keynes, which is where I spend most of my time. I won’t stay at home for the race weekend though, as it’s better if I can stay closer to the track. It means I won’t have to cook my own breakfast and do my own laundry. I enjoy my time there. We will be trying to make the most of any opportunity.
Scuderia Toro Rosso