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2017 | 08 | 25 GP Belgien / GP Belgium25 August 2017. Seb: “Better in long-runs”. Kimi: “Not a bad start”. 

Francorchamps, August 25 – It was a day of mixed feelings for Scuderia Ferrari drivers Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel. However, at the end of the two Friday practice sessions the two men managed to post competitive times on the 7.004 Km Ardennes track,both on timed laps or during long-runs.Seb, on the other hand, felt that improvement is at hand in terms of performance: “I am not entirely happy but overall I think the car is ok. We just need to put a little bit more together. This is a nice track and the cars have more grip, so it is more fun. It should be nice tomorrow even if I don’t know what the weather will be like. This is a long track, so it is not that easy to put everything together. I didn’t really find the rhythm today but the long run was better. So, overall the car is capable of being fast, but we need to get it right. I need to do my job and I know I can go faster. On Friday it is always difficult to judge the situation, because on Saturday it seems that everyone makes a step forward. If we can do that, then we can be very close. We are here to give a hard time to our competitors”.

Kimi reported no major surprises: “Today we somehow expected how practice was going to be and it was not too bad as a start. Obviously there are always things you want to try more and the rain in the end did not help, but it was a pretty normal Friday.  It’s hard to compare driving here to a year ago, but it doesn’t feel very different, as we are now quite used to going a bit faster everywhere. We’ll keep working today, this evening and tomorrow morning, in order to be stronger for qualifying. There are things we have to go through to do better, as is the case with any Friday at any race circuit. There’s no point now to start guessing what the others are doing, we’ll see tomorrow in qualifying, but I’m sure we can be fast”.

Photo  © www.motorsportpics.de | Jerry Andre

2017 | 07 | 30 GP Ungarn / GP HungaryBudapest, July 30

Everybody inside the team can be very happy and proud of what we have done today! Afterwards, I said to Kimi that I was sorry, because I was slow and struggling during the race. For Kimi it was not good to be there in the middle of a sandwich. It was a tough race that, in the end, kept a good shape. I developed a problem with the steering wheel and I don't know why yet. We need to avoid it happening again of course, but during the race I didn't have an option. It's not like parking the car, check if everything's all right and then fix the problem. It was quite annoying because it was a strange feeling. But then, at some point, I forgot about it and just tried to get used to it, which was tricky because it just kept changing and getting worse. However, in the end the pace was still there. More generally, I don't like the short term view that some people have, that after a good race everything is great and you are the hero, but after a bad race it is a disaster. It is not fair because people work hard spending a lot of time, working all together on the car. In my opinion, we have the best car and downforce which, hasn't been the case for many years. In the end we can make a difference and we have done that so far. We have our testing days here next week and we have a lot of work to do. After that there will be the Belgian GP. Our car has been good there and I think we have some improvements, so it should be fine.

Photo  © www.motorsportpics.de | Jerry Andre

2017 | 07 | 29 GP Ungarn / GP Hungary Budapest, July 29

The car and the whole session were fantastic! I am really happy. We brought some new parts here and we tested them yesterday. Then obviously, we talked about it a lot and I think we got the car in better shape this morning. We are working very hard to get everything right. The guys have worked so hard and they love what they do. So, it is good to get back into the car and do our job. We love racing and this weekend has been very good so far. We know we have a strong car, no matter where we go, and that’s the great thing about this year. Now we have to move forward and focus. Qualifying is done, so we now concentrate on the race. There’s a lot of hard work to do and we need to take it one step at a time. Now, we’ll see what happens tomorrow. Thank you all!

Photo  © www.motorsportpics.de | Jerry Andre

 2017 | 07 | 28 GP Ungarn / GP HungaryBudapest, Juli 28

Sebastian, nach dem heutigen Tag; wie realistisch ist die Pole morgen für Sie?
Hmm… Weiß ich nicht. Insgesamt war der Tag heute etwas schwierig für uns, am Nachmittag lief es besser als am Vormittag, trotzdem glaube ich, dass wir es noch schaffen können. 
 
Wird es ein Dreikampf um die Pole?
Es sieht so aus. Ich hoffe, dass wir morgen dabei sind. Der Tag heute war, was die Balance betrifft, etwas durchwachsen. Wir müssen noch ein bisschen tüfteln und finden, was das Auto braucht, aber alles in allem war es schon ok. Der Longrun war ganz gut, und am Nachmittag, mit zunehmender Zeit im Auto, habe ich mich auch wohler gefühlt.
 
Was brauchen Sie um hier eine perfekte Runde hinzubekommen? 
Die Balance muss stimmen, das Verhältnis von der Vorder- zur Hinterachse. Im Idealfall rutscht das Auto gar nicht, aber das gibt es sehr selten, letztendlich ist es eine Abstimmungssache, dass man das gut hinkriegt. Was aber auch sehr entscheidend sein wird, sind die Reifen. Am Ende muss man dem Reifen über die ganze Runde das Optimum abverlangen. 
 
Was lief am Nachmittag besser als am Vormittag?
Ich hatte ein bisschen mehr Zeit im Auto, konnte ein bisschen besser den Rhythmus finden und mich auf das Auto einstellen. Das ist das Eine. Zum Anderen haben wir ein paar Sachen probiert. Vielleicht war nicht alles richtig, aber zumindest haben wir eine Richtung für morgen.
 
Bezogen auf die Reifenschäden in Silverstone: Wie skeptisch sind Sie hier, was die Reifen angeht?
Überhaupt nicht!
 
Wie heiß wird es am Sonntag?
Es ist immer warm in Ungarn, also zwischen 30 und 32 Grad. Die Asphalttemperatur ist in dem Sinne entscheidend. Aber das gilt ja für alle.
 
Glauben Sie, dass an diesem Wochenende ein Red Bull der größere Konkurrent als ein Mercedes ist?
Weiß ich nich. Wir konzentrieren uns auf uns und versuchen morgen das Beste rauszuquetschen aus dem Auto um im Idealfall ganz vorne zu stehen. Der Rest zeigt sich dann am Sonntag. Das Rennen hier ist schwer einzuschätzen, weil man normalerweise nicht so gut überholen kann. Es geht auch viel über die Reifen, die Strategie, also es ist noch ein langer Weg. Aber jetzt schauen wir erst mal für morgen früh, dass wir das Auto ein bisschen besser herbringen.

Photo  © www.motorsportpics.de | Jerry Andre

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