Formula 1 News

Australian Grand Prix – Thursday Press Conference

Ahead of the first Grand Prix of the 2013 season, six drivers stepped in the firing line of the Formula One media.
Thursday, March 14, 2013

March 14th, 2013 (F1plus/G. Polychronis).- The six drivers that approached the microphones of the press conference room were Daniel Ricciardo Lewis Hamilton, Kimi Raikkonen, Fernando Alonso, Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber.

Ricciardo has had one year to get comfortable with his surroundings at Torro Rosso, and he shared his plan for his second season at Red Bull Racing’s sister team.

The Australian said: “Obviously I’ll try and take the experience I learned from last year and bring it into this season; a bit of extra confidence and whatnot and then just try to getsome better results and start to creep up the order a bit. That’s really the plan”

In recent times, there has been much attention drawn to Lewis Hamilton’s new position at Mercedes GP and he delivered an update on his current status at the team.

Hamilton stated: “It’s not that much different [life at Mercedes]. It’s put me in a better place. Just settling into the team pretty well. It’s still a Formula One team and they still exist to win. The guys are doing a fantastic job and I’m really excited about the season and excited to get back in the car.”

Many believe that Lotus is a real title contender for this season, however Kimi Raikkonen is not certain on the accuracy of that statement yet:

“I think we [Louts] are more or less, speedwise, similar to where we were last year when we started and like I said, it’s difficult to say exactly where we will be. We’ll see a bit tomorrow” he said.

Fernando Alonso understands that this season will be as hard as any other. He agrees that it will be a ‘very interesting championship.’ He added: “Very challenging first part of the championship with Australia, Malaysia. Difficult circuits, difficult weather as well – changeable. So we need to start on the right foot and hopefully score some good points for the championship.”

Winter testing posed as an opportunity for all teams to test new aspects of their cars, however, Sebastian Vettel declared that the Pirelli tyres were responsible for the hindering of testing opportunities for all teams and drivers on the roster.

Vettel affirmed: “The tyres didn’t last. It was extremely difficult for us [everyone] to do a lot of laps on the same set of tyres, to test certain things. We hope it gets better here. Otherwise it could be quite funny.”

Helmut Marko has recently criticized Mark Webber’s driving skill, as he feels ‘he (Webber) has a little trouble with the pressure that he creates.’ Marko also believes that ‘he falls relatively easily into a downward spiral.’

Webber abruptly avoided the topic on Thursday when asked by F1plus.com if Marko’s criticism ‘acts as a motivator’ for him to prove himself throughout the season.

Webber expressed coarsely: “He [Marko] has his agenda and I’m not part of it, so that’s fine. Everyone can have their opinions. I’m always pretty good for motivations.”

It is always hard to analyse how teams and drivers’ will perform before the first race of the season; however, the Formula One community will be able to gain valuable information after Sunday’s race. 

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