04 November


Sebastian Vettel
In Sao Paulo I have taken part in races which we will always remember, for different reasons. Like in 2009, when we almost took the title in the last race of the season. In the end it wasnít enough and Jenson Button became world champion. I was very disappointed, but it was also an important experience for me. On the positive side we knew that we fought until the end and gave everything we could. 2010 was my first year on the Sao Paulo podium: a truly unforgettable race and thinking about Brazil 2012, I spun on the first lap and found myself at the back of the field. Suddenly the title seemed so far away. I worked myself back up through the field position by position and at the end it was unbelievable: we were World Champions again. In 2013, the title was already secured, but as it was my ninth win in a row, I will always remember this race. In Sao Paulo we drive anti-clockwise and the track has severe bumps. One of the best chances to overtake is the first chicane, the Senna-S. You have to be careful here, especially at the start as itís very tight. The left-right-left combination looks a bit like a screwdriver and you are going downhill, so you have to be patient with the steering.

Daniel Ricciardo
I know fans love Interlagos because it provides such interesting races, but itís never been a favourite track of mine. Itís a short lap and ideally I like something with a few more corners. But itís got a brilliant atmosphere and if you donít enjoy that, youíre doing something wrong. I canít honestly say what the secret is to getting a good lap at Interlagos because Iím not sure Iíve ever really nailed it! Iíve been OK but it hasnít yet given up its secrets. I think the best approach is to not look beyond the next corner. It pays to be ultra-precise with your track positioning and your braking: you have to concentrate on the turn that youíre in, rather than thinking too far ahead because for most of the lap the corners are individual events rather than part of a sequence. Obviously the time of year we go to Brazil and the location means that thereís a really good chance of a wet race. At some venues thatís a real game-changer but at Interlagos the character of the track doesnít change in the wet Ė it poses all the same challenges but with a few added variables thrown in.

Joe Robinson and Chris Gent
Number 1 mechanics, about the grid in Brazil

Why is the grid at Interlagos special?
JR: It has got quite a carnival atmosphere, because the stands are very close to the track and the crowd have sat in the grandstands for quite a while to see the support races. The Brazilian fans are always very enthusiastic when the Formula One preparations finally start on the grid. Itís a great atmosphere.

Is it tougher to work on the Interlagos grid than other races because of the crowds or is Monaco the trickiest?
JR: Itís got its own challenges because there is quite a steep hill on certain sections of the grid. So if you are in the first five slots on the grid, the car tends to roll backwards and you need to manage that with your equipment. Also the grid is not particularly big and access to it is either over a very high pit wall involving some steps, or the grid-trolleys and generators have to go all the way to the bottom of the pit-lane entry, which is a long walk. But all grids offer different challenges and can be difficult to handle.

Whatís been your most embarrassing moment on a GP grid?
JR: The worst one was probably having to wear a horrendous ginger wig and a Scottish hat for David Coulthardís last race in 2008!

Why is the grid at Interlagos special?
CG: I think itís quite a special race. Normally the last one of the year and you get a lot of celebrities there. Itís very busy and the crowd is amazing there as well.

Does the atmosphere make it more tense? Can you still just get on with the job?
CG: It can be a bit tense, because itís very busy on the grid and you have to watch out for a lot of people around there, but you can still get on with your job.

Is it tougher to work on the Interlagos grid than other races because of the crowds or is Monaco the trickiest?
CG: Maybe Monaco is the trickiest, because it is very narrow and there are a lot of celebrities, so a lot of people walking about and you have to be careful not to damage the cars.

What was the first race you ever went on the grid at?
CG: That was Barcelona 2006. It was special as it was my first race and I was quite nervous, but it was great and I really enjoyed it.

Who is the biggest celeb youíve seen on the grid?
CG: That would be Prince Harry in Silverstone.

posted at 19:38:35 on 11/04/14 by webmaster - Category: races