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Jun 27

Formula One teams Santander British Grand Prix preview

British Grand Prix Formula One preview

Today’s report from Formula One teams & drivers in Silverstone.

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Red Bull Racing

Red Bull Racing

Mark Webber

What’s your best Silverstone memory?

I think the 2010 victory was pretty special – it was my first British GP win. It’s the home race for a lot of the team and it’s my second home race, as I live in the UK. The fans here are right up there with the Italian Tifosi; Formula One has been an integral part of UK motorsport for such a long time. The Silverstone GP is a brilliant weekend, it’s such a prestigious event and that’s why it’s so nice to get a great result there.

What are your thoughts on the Circuit?

It’s an old school circuit, fast and flowing. It’s very demanding on the driver in terms of accuracy, and the car also. You can really let the car go around there and feel like you’re a Formula One driver.

Is there more pressure as the race is local?

Not really, we want to do our best at every race we go to, there are 25 points for grabs at every one. I’m sure it means that little bit extra for the staff members and their families, as many will be watching onsite. They’re very proud of the effort they put in during the year and of the car and it’s their time to show it.

Sebastian Vettel

What do you like about the British Grand Prix?

Apart from the unpredictable English weather, the British Grand Prix at Silverstone is a highlight of the season and one of my favourite tracks. It’s located only 30km from our factory in Milton Keynes and the circuit’s a real challenge. Even after the paddock and pit lane conversion, it remains a tough track. Only Suzuka can be compared to Silverstone – no other track on the calendar has such a sequence of superfast corners like Silverstone does. Copse Corner, Maggots, Becketts and Chapel are amongst the four best corners in Formula One – they belong together. You have to catch the first one perfectly, otherwise the rhythm is off for all of them and at the end, Chapel is so insanely fast. If you have driven properly in the previous three corners and the car is well tuned then you can drive through full throttle. You go through at roughly 270kph, really amazing! You don’t have long to think about it, so just give it full throttle and go. In the end, apart from all the technique, it’s about driving the car as fast as you can.

source: Red Bull Racing, redbullracing.com

Scuderia Ferrari

Scuderia Ferrari

coming soon

source: Scuderia Ferrari, ferrari.com

Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

2013 Santander British Grand Prix preview

Silverstone facts & stats

The Santander British Grand Prix is one of only two races on the Formula 1 calendar to have featured in every World Championship season. The race has been staged at three circuits during that time, and Silverstone – scene of the first ever world championship race in 1950 – has been its exclusive home since 1987.

Silverstone is situated on the site of a former World War II bomber station and has undergone several facelifts over the years. The most recent change came in 2010/11, when a new infield loop was added and the start-line was moved from the exit of Woodcote to the straight between Club and Abbey corners. The change added 759 metres to the track length, taking the total distance to 3.660 miles, and it resulted in the introduction of a new pit and paddock complex. The new pitlane is 489 metres, the longest of the entire season, and slopes heavily downhill.

The fast and flowing nature of Silverstone makes it popular with the drivers. Two corners – Copse and Maggotts – are taken at speeds in excess of 250km/h, and the average speed of 225km/h makes it one of the quickest circuits on the calendar. Only Spa-Francorchamps and Monza are faster.

McLaren has an enviable record in Great Britain: 14 victories since 1973 make it the second most successful constructor in the event’s history. For 2013, Jenson Button enters his home race seeking the 50th podium of his career – and his first at Silverstone – while team-mate Sergio Perez aims to take his second points finish at the racetrack.

  • Race distance 52 laps (306.198km/190.263 miles)
  • Start time 13:00 (local)/12:00 (GMT)
  • Circuit length 5.891km/3.660 miles
  • 2012 winner Mark Webber (Red Bull RB8) 52 laps in 1hr25m11.288s (215.662km/h)
  • 2012 pole Fernando Alonso (Ferrari F2012) 1m51.746s (189.784km/h)
  • Lap record Kimi Raikkonen (Lotus E20) 1m34.661s (224.037km/h)

McLaren at the British Grand Prix

  • Wins 14 (1973, 1975, 1977, 1981, 1982, 1984, 1985, 1988, 1989, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2005, 2008)
  • Poles 7 (1977, 1984, 1985, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2005)
  • Fastest laps 7 (1977, 1989, 1998, 1999, 2004, 2007, 2008)

Car 5: Jenson Button

  • Age 33 (January 19 1980)
  • GPs 235
  • Wins 15
  • Poles 8
  • FLs 8

“Any driver’s home race is a special thing, but racing at Silverstone means so much to me: it’s the place where I grew up watching Formula 1 – I first came here in 1994 – and it’s also a race that means so much to grand prix racing’s history and heritage.

“It’s just unique: to race on the same track as Fangio, Clark, Stewart and Senna is cool, and you always feel the echoes of the past when you arrive at the circuit for the first time. Even though it’s almost changed beyond recognition since 1950, and is now one of the best grand prix facilities in the world, it’s still lost none of that special atmosphere. I love it.

“One of the most amazing things at Silverstone has been the level of support I’ve seen every single year. From the garage, on the slow-down lap, on the drivers’ parade, or just on the way to the paddock in the morning, you see the fans cheering you on. Silverstone really reverberates to fan-power.

“After our difficult weekend in Canada, I’ll be hoping for a more representative weekend at home. Although the race in Montreal was disappointing, I still feel that it wasn’t a fully accurate reflection of where we are as a team – on a smoother track like Silverstone, I’m optimistic that we’ll fare better.

“Of course, I don’t want to raise everyone’s expectations: I think the fans know what to expect. For me, my goal will be to get the maximum from the package and to race as hard as I can – that’ll be a satisfactory outcome for me next weekend.”

Car 6: Sergio Perez

  • Age 23 (January 26 1990)
  • GPs 44
  • Wins 0
  • Poles 0
  • FLs 2

“It’s exciting to be going to Silverstone for my first ‘home’ race with Vodafone McLaren Mercedes. Like McLaren, Silverstone is a place with an incredible amount of history – it’s cool that you can look at old black-and-white photos of the British Grand Prix and still clearly recognise corners like Copse and Stowe, and the Hangar Straight. It’s amazing to think that the circuit has been in use since the very first race of the Formula 1 World Championship.

“I like Silverstone, and I usually go well there: I had a good race in 2011, when I finished seventh, and I feel confident I could have had a points finish last year until I had an accident with Pastor [Maldonado].

“After a tough weekend in Canada, we’ll be looking for a stronger showing in front of the team’s home fans. We are steadily making progress – I’m hopeful of a better showing next weekend.”

Martin Whitmarsh – Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

“The Santander British Grand Prix is an extremely special race for everybody at Vodafone McLaren Mercedes. Of course, Silverstone is our home race, which naturally makes it feel different from every other event on the calendar, but, regardless, there’s a unique atmosphere on display at Silverstone.

“It’s a place where Formula 1 encounters both the support and expectation of the most passionate and knowledgeable crowd of the entire season. That can be uplifting and daunting in equal measure.

“The circuit itself is tough to master: it still retains enough of the original wartime layout to successfully link it to the past, but it’s probably the best example in the world of how a track can be updated and re-profiled in order to meet modern safety standards and yet still maintain the challenge required for contemporary Formula 1.

“Most importantly, it’s an absolutely fabulous high-speed challenge that the drivers love, and which provides the opportunity to witness Formula 1 at its unfettered best.”

A McLaren 50 classic moment

British Grand Prix, 11 July 1999

This was one of the pivotal races of the 1999 championship. Mika Hakkinen, starting on pole for the sixth time in eight races, shared the front row of the grid with Michael Schumacher, but their world title fight took a dramatic twist on the opening lap when Schumacher crashed at Stowe and broke his right leg.

The race was stopped while Schumacher was extricated from his Ferrari and, at the re-start, Mika leapt into a convincing lead in his MP4-14. But his domination was short-lived: a faulty wheel-nut resulted in Mika losing his left-rear wheel shortly after his first pitstop and he was forced to retire. 

With a pitstop drama also affecting Eddie Irvine in the second Ferrari, David Coulthard took the lead and he drove a faultless race to finish 1.8s ahead of the Ulsterman. It was the first of David’s two British Grand Prix victories (both for McLaren-Mercedes) and prompted him to comment: “This is the best feeling I’ve ever had in my racing career.”

source: Vodafone McLaren Mercedes, mclaren.com

05 - Lotus F1 Team

Lotus F1 Team

Kimi Räikkönen: “I expect us to be back where we should be”

After two race weekends with meagre points pickings, our Finn is eager to get his championship challenge back on track at Silverstone

Your championship potential has taken something of a hit in the last two races; is this a big concern?

Obviously, it’s not been that great and we haven’t got the results we wanted. The last couple of races have been more a question of surviving not attacking and that’s not what anyone wants. That said, Monaco and Montréal are both street circuits; they’re quite different from a lot of tracks we visit and there are quite a lot of variables. You never know how you’re going to go at those two tracks but we do now and at least we got a few points.

Does returning to a permanent race circuit bring any positivity?

Silverstone is a more normal circuit and we’ve been okay at every other permanent circuit so far this year. There’s no reason why we shouldn’t be back to the positions we should be with this package. We just have to be patient, do our very best over the entire weekend and step by step we can start catching the leaders.

How challenging is Silverstone as a race track?

Silverstone is all about long sweeping high-speed corners and high downforce levels. It’s one of the fastest circuits on the calendar; it’s very challenging and the flowing corners are pretty good fun to drive. Hopefully our new parts will help us; particularly in the faster corners. If that’s the case, it could be a good weekend.

Have you always liked Silverstone?

Yes, it’s always such a good feeling going to Silverstone. It’s a great place to race and it has been a good circuit for me since the very beginning of my career. I have a long history there. It was the real base for the start of my international racing career in Formula Renault in 1999 and 2000. Since then I’ve always enjoyed racing at Silverstone. I don’t know why; there must be this nostalgic feeling that I have every time we go there.

You won at Silverstone in 2007 and have been on the podium five times altogether; how does it feel when everything goes right there?

When you win in Silverstone, it gives such a good feeling. You have to get everything exactly right. I won there in Formula Renault and then in Formula 1 with Ferrari in 2007. It would be fantastic to win again there, especially with the factory just down the road. I’m sure we would have some fantastic celebrations.

What about the British summer?

It’s always windy at Silverstone. Often it rains too, like we saw last year in qualifying. The track conditions change very quickly, which makes the car more tricky to set-up. Obviously when you are running at the front it’s best to have stable conditions, but I don’t mind really. The weather is just a part of the fun of racing in England. I’ll enjoy the weekend whatever the weather will be.

How’s the feeling from the team?

The team has worked 100% to have a really competitive car for the home race. Silverstone is the closest circuit to the factory so hopefully we can celebrate a good result with all of the factory personnel and their families who bring their support every year.

Romain Grosjean: “An English summer’s day is wonderful, but sometimes you have to look hard to find one!”

After his fightback through the field in Montréal went largely unnoticed thanks to a change to the planned strategy with an extra pit stop, Romain looks to Silverstone for redemption

How do you like Silverstone?

It’s a fantastic track with a lot of high speed corners which should suit the E21; especially with the upgrade package we have for it. It’s a home race for myself and the team so we’re sure to have a lot of support. I won there in the GP2 Series in 2011, so I have to say I quite like it! I also scored points on my Silverstone Formula 1 debut so it’s a run of results I’d like to continue.

Why is Silverstone rated as one of the favourite circuits for many drivers?

Silverstone is challenging, but it has a good feel. It’s one of the quickest tracks of the year, with legendary corners like the Magotts, Becketts, Chapel complex. It’s quite a feeling going through there and I can’t wait to feel that sensation once more. It’s also a special Grand Prix for the team as the factory is very close to the track. It’s always nice to see not only the race team, but also some of the many people from the factory who come to see us in action. It’s thanks to all their hard work that we’re out on track and they are all doing an amazing job, always working so hard. I will be visiting them after the race and hopefully I will go there with some silverware to show them.

What is difficult about a Silverstone weekend?

Last year there was quite a bit of wet weather over the weekend; not that this was much of a surprise to the Englishmen I’ve spoken to! I live quite near to the track now and my experience of regularly visiting Enstone means that I know the weather can change quite a lot. An English summer’s day is wonderful, but sometimes you have to look hard to find one!

Was there much more that could have been done in Canada?

There’s not really much to tell. The second set of tyres really didn’t work for us in Montréal and if you can’t get them to work then you’re going to have a difficult race. We had a strong strategy planned and the first part of the race worked well. Once we got the medium tyre up to temperature at the start of the race I was able to make some good overtaking moves. This meant we were looking like taking a strong position in the points, which wouldn’t have been bad considering I started at the back of the grid. However, once we fitted the supersoft tyres it all went wrong. The set we used simply didn’t work for us and the tyres fell away after fewer than ten laps, which was a big surprise. After that, we could either try to fight a losing battle with shot tyres, or change to a new set – of mediums we decided – and see what we could do by pushing like it was qualifying. Even then we couldn’t get the last set working properly either, so it was a frustrating end to the race.

The next five races are all in Europe; does this make a difference?

There’s no jet-lag and you’re more likely to get a good night’s sleep, which is a good thing! The race meetings are shorter too, as you don’t lose the time traveling or getting used to a new time zone. We visit some great destinations over the next few races, with some very knowledgeable and enthusiastic fans. We hope we can put on a good show, with Lotus F1 Team right at the front of the battle.

Eric Boullier: “We’re happy to welcome Infinity Racing Partners to the team”

Two races without a decent points haul do not constitute a big drama insists Team Principal Eric Boullier, who keenly welcomes a new part-owner to the team with the news of Infinity Racing Partners taking a 35% stake in the squad

What can you tell us about the ownership of the team?

This week we have some very good news which is another step in the development of the team by Genii Capital. A 35% stake has been sold to Infinity Racing Partners, an organisation committed to furthering the team’s goals and supporting Genii Capital’s vision for the team’s future. The day to day running of the team here at Enstone remains unchanged but for the future, access to the global network of Infinity Racing’s principal partners means there are major opportunities to secure high level sponsorships. Investors taking a stake in a team is common practice in Formula 1 and other sports, and Genii have been talking to potential partners for some time as they wanted to make sure that they would select the right one. We’re happy that a strong investor has been found to help bolster the team’s position and allow us to push for the future.

Montréal was the second consecutive event where results fell short of expectations; are the team falling away from the front of the field?

Certainly not. In Monaco it was clear we had the pace and potential to achieve good results. Montréal was a different story, a difficult weekend for us, and we’ll take that on the chin. We struggled a little bit in Canada, but we have been able to identify clear reasons why this occurred. We’ve learnt some valuable lessons and drawn the line under the Canadian Grand Prix. We head to Silverstone with a determined strategy to be back fighting for podiums.

Can the team maintain a championship push?

Yes, and we’re certainly not going to let two weekends of poor results stop us in our efforts. We have a very reasonable package to fit to the E21 for Silverstone – with a number of elements which should help with our performance – and we have plenty of other upgrades to come later in the season too.

What are your thoughts on the latest tyre allocations?

We trust Pirelli’s judgement in these matters as they have all the data to analyse and listen to the concerns of all the teams; some of whom are very keen to see the tyres changed, some of whom are very keen to have the tyres left as they are. Let’s see what happens in the next three races for which the allocations have been made and see how that impacts on future allocations.

How do you rate the performance of both drivers in Canada?

Kimi did a great job when you consider that he was suffering from a brake issue, and he continued his run of points finishes. It’s frustrating for him and it’s frustrating for us that he’s finished without a strong points haul in a second consecutive race, but we have everything in place for Silverstone to reverse that trend. For two of the last three races, Romain’s performance has been masked. In Spain our calculations showed a podium was possible were it not for the component failure which led to him retiring, and in Montréal his performance of driving through the field was masked by us having to change our tyre strategy. Had we continued on a one-stop Romain would have finished strongly in the points.

What do you make of Kimi’s unbroken run of finishes and points scoring?

Kimi’s a points scoring machine and it will be nice if he sets a new record, even if he says he’s not bothered by that sort of thing. Since his comeback with us he has been the most reliable driver on the grid for scoring points, and it’s interesting to reflect back to the doubt some people had about his return to Formula 1. He’s had some bad luck in the last two races, but I’m sure the drivers he’s competing with will also have some bad luck too.

Alan Permane: “Silverstone should see our biggest step forwards this year”

After a difficult weekend in Canada, Trackside Operations Director Alan Permane is feeling positive heading to Silverstone, with a useful box of tricks ready to be unleashed from the upgrades cupboard…

Montréal wasn’t the weekend we wanted; what have we learnt from the experience?

We struggled at a low energy circuit in both wet and dry conditions; that much is simple to say. Of course, as a team we go over the whole weekend and dissect every detail – including things like procedures, car setup and so on – to ensure we pick up on any area we may have missed out on and to identify if we could have done things better. Overall, it was very clear we were struggling for grip through the entire weekend in both wet and dry conditions. Romain put in some decent laps on Friday and ended both sessions in P3, but it was difficult to replicate that performance again. It looks like we weren’t able to get the tyres into their performance window other than on Friday.

If the team struggles with low energy circuits, is there a concern for the rest of the season?

Fortunately there aren’t any more really low energy circuits to come this season. Of the current venues we visit, Montréal, Monaco and Hockenheim can be viewed as low energy and we’ve visited two of those already so far this year, with the third not being on the 2013 calendar. I’ll be surprised if we encounter the issues we did in Montréal again this season.

What is needed from the car in Silverstone?

It’s a circuit which is similar to Barcelona in the regard that it exposes weaknesses in downforce. You need an efficient car; one with a decent amount of downforce, but one which remains slippery for the straights. There are two straights where the cars exceed 300kph, so too much drag will hurt here. There are some very high speed corners, with the first sector of the lap consisting entirely of high speed turns. The new layout has brought a few more technical corners, but overall it’s still counted as a high-speed track. You need to set up the car aerodynamically to be as quick as possible through the medium and high speed corners and along the straights. The circuit is windy with a scarcity of shelter which – added to unpredictable weather – makes set-up difficult at times. The wind can lead you to run with less than optimum levels of front wing to keep the car consistent.

What upgrades are there for the car?

We have a tighter, figure-hugging bodywork package which should give some benefit; especially if the weather is quite cool at Silverstone. There’s a new front wing, suspension profiles and suspension upgrades in addition to various other aero upgrades, which combine to give us what should be our biggest step forward of the year. This is a good thing, of course, but we’ll be running them in the context of all our rivals probably unveiling significant upgrade packs too. We conducted a couple of days of straight-line running after Canada with positive results and some of the fruits of this work should be seen in Silverstone.

What do you make of the latest tyre allocations for the next three races?

They certainly seem conservative and contrary to the supposed approach for the tyre allocations in 2013. The individual compounds – supersoft, soft, medium and hard – were made softer for each grade this year in order to present teams with a challenge, which is what we saw at some races earlier in the season. That work is undone if you simply allocate harder compounds for races, as we’ve seen with those nominated for the next three rounds. It’s certainly unusual to take the same tyres to Hungary as to Bahrain and Silverstone. The situation is quite similar to last year when the allocations went harder late in the year and we just ended up doing one-stop races. Of course, there are teams who are eager for the tyres to be more durable; whether through changes to the tyres themselves or changes to the allocations for races. In contrast, we’re firmly in the camp that the approach to tyre allocation should remain as agreed by the sport before the start of the season, and not be changed part-way through the year.

Greatness in Britain: An Engineer’s Guide to the Silverstone Circuit

The Circuit

Turn 1:

The bump at Abbey was ‘addressed’ in 2011 after drivers complained of its severity, making this a much simpler corner than previously.

Turn 7:

Minimising understeer through Luffield is essential to ensure good speed down the straight, as this leads on through Copse, then subsequently into the Becketts complex and on to Stowe.

Turn 9:

Taken almost flat out, Copse is one of the most daunting corners of the season and a real test of nerve for the drivers.

Turns 11/12/13:

Overall car balance is essential through the high-speed Becketts complex, which is entered at over 300kph with only minor throttle lift through the entire series of corners.

Turn 16:

Vale is one of the slowest corners on the track – taken at around 100kph – and precedes the final right-hander of Club before the drivers pile down the start / finish straight.

The Car

Front Wing:

The cars may carry a little bit more front wing here than at other circuits to balance the car through the high speed corners. This also helps minimise understeer through Brooklands and Luffield, which is vital to maintain good speed down the following straight, then on through Copse and into the Becketts complex.

Rear Wing:

After two street courses, the focus changes from maximising mechanical grip to maximising aerodynamic efficiency, with downforce levels appropriate to this aim.

Suspension:

There isn’t a great deal of kerb usage or anything which relies on a particular aspect of the suspension here. You need a stable car through the high speed corners like Copse, Maggots, Becketts and Chapel, which is achieved through a combination of aerodynamic balance and suspension settings.

Brakes:

In complete contrast Canada – where we battle to keep the brakes cool – here we fight to maintain enough heat in them. Silverstone is very easy on the brakes, which get relatively little usage due to the quantity of high speed corners. On occasions when the drivers actually need the brakes they can be quite cold, so the key is to ensure they stay warm enough to function correctly.

Tyres:

Silverstone is not dissimilar to Barcelona in that the high speed corners make it quite a tough circuit on tyres. Pirelli will bring the original 2013 specification tyres – albeit with some changes to the manufacturing process – to this race.

Engine:

The layout of Silverstone is reasonably hard on the engine due to the high average rpm used over the course of a lap.

Looks Who’s Talking: Social Media in Action

Spotlight On… Instagram

As the old adage goes, a picture can paint a thousand words. It’s perhaps no surprise then that a collection of beautifully edited shots from our globe-trotting exploits have created a fair old buzz amongst the fans.

From a toe in the water during the 2012 season, a concerted push on the Official Lotus F1 Team Instagram page has seen arguably the most creative social media platform around grow to become the third largest community in our social media portfolio, with just shy of 50,000 fans now on board.

Currently the most followed account in the motorsport industry – eclipsing official profiles from rival Formula 1 teams, NASCAR, MotoGP and IndyCar to name but a few – a blend of exclusive behind-the-scenes shots and high quality action stills combine to form a unique and artistic perspective of life in the Formula 1 paddock.

To see what all the fuss is about, click here: http://bit.ly/T7dG7G

 In Numbers

  • Pictures Posted – 373
  • Comments Received – 6,565
  • Likes Received – 384,237
  • Followers – 48,775
  • Inside Line: The Latest News from Enstone

To Infinity and Beyond…

Lotus F1 Team has new part-owners as of earlier this week, with Infinity Racing Partners Limited (Infinity Racing) – an investment consortium comprised of private investors – {acquiring a 35% minority stake in the team.

Lotus F1 Team was previously 100% owned by an investment vehicle of Genii Capital – a global investment management and financial advisory firm headquartered in Luxembourg – which retains a controlling stake of 65% in the team and remains as committed as ever to driving the team forwards in its quest for glory.

This fresh investment will not only help consolidate the financial status of the team, but will also aid the Enstone outfit in maintaining development objectives as it bids for World Championship success. To find out more about what this means for the team – including quotes from members of the board – click here: http://bit.ly/11Y29hl

 

The Next Generation

Here at Enstone, we’re always keen to identify and of course encourage burgeoning talent; a fact highlighted earlier in the year with the announcement of the all-new Lotus F1 Junior Team programme.

It’s been a strong start to the season for our rising stars as they bid for glory across some of the most competitive motorsport formula in the world, including Formula Renault 3.5, Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0, GP3 Series and International KF karting championships.

Find out more about our young guns and their progress so far in the newly formed Lotus F1 Junior Team section of lotusf1team.com: http://bit.ly/122u93f

Behind the Perfect Lap

Following on from the hugely popular ‘Pit Crew 360’ series launched during the 2012 season, Lotus F1 Team Official Partner Sure [Rexona] continues to build on its relationship with the race team in its latest video offering to the fans, taking them ‘Behind the Perfect Lap’.

Putting viewers right at the heart of the behind-the-scenes action here at Enstone, this in-depth feature follows both the drivers and crew to find out just what it takes to compete at the very sharp end of motorsport’s premier series. Click here to watch: http://bit.ly/17rEn1Z

source: Lotus F1 Team, lotusrenaultgp.com

Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team

Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team

source: Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team, mercedes-gp.com

Sauber F1 Team logo

Sauber F1 Team

Preview – 2013 Santander British Grand Prix

8th Round of the FIA Formula One World Championship, 28th to 30th June 2013

The Sauber F1 Team heads to Great Britain for the Santander British Grand Prix, which will take place from 28th to 30th of June. The home Grand Prix for many Formula One Teams, Silverstone is a circuit with a lot of history and tradition. Sauber F1 Team drivers, Nico Hülkenberg and Esteban Gutiérrez, both like the track and are looking forward to the weekend.

Nico Hülkenberg (car number 11):

“The British Grand Prix has a lot of history and is the home Grand Prix for the English Formula One teams. For the fans it also holds a lot of tradition. I’m comfortable with the track. I particularly like corners like Maggots, Becketts and Chapel, which require a lot of driving skill. They are a lot of fun in a Formula One car, because you can really feel the downforce. High downforce will be important, but also aerodynamic efficiency, because there are still a few straights. The track is challenging for every driver and, in addition, the weather can be tricky as well. So it should be an interesting weekend.”

Esteban Gutiérrez (car number 12):

“Silverstone is a traditional track. I’ve raced there in every year of my career and it’s one of the circuits I like the most. The track has a lot of fast corners that you pass in split seconds. To feel the limit of the car at such high speed, for example in corners like Becketts, is something special. In GP3 Silverstone was the track where I scored the most points in one weekend, and I also have good memories of winning there in Formula BMW and GP2. Usually the weather presents a challenge there, so we can expect a bit of variety again.”

Tom McCullough, Head of Track Engineering:

“Silverstone is one of the most challenging circuits, with a bias towards high speed corners and relatively short straights compared to the more modern circuits. The layout favours high-speed stability and a good change of direction, whereas the demand on the braking system is low. The track is also quite bumpy in some areas so the ride performance is important too. The abrasive tarmac and high-speed nature of the circuit result in it being hard on the tyres. Therefore, Pirelli has selected the two hardest tyre compounds in its range – medium and hard. Historically, overtaking has not been easy, but this year there is an additional DRS zone on the Hangar straight, which should help create a few more opportunities. The weather often plays a significant role during the weekend, so this needs to be monitored at all times.”

Circuit Silverstone / 5.891 km
Race distance 52 laps / 306.198 km
Schedule Qualifying 13:00 hrs Race 13:00 hrs local time (14:00 hrs CEST)
Driver Nico Hülkenberg Esteban Gutiérrez
Born 19.08.1987 Emmerich (DE) 05.08.1991 Monterrey (MX)
Marital status Single Single
Height / Weight 1.84 m / 74 kg 1.80 m / 63 kg
First GP Bahrain 2010 Melbourne 2013
GP started 45 7
Best race result 4th Spa (2012) 11th Barcelona (2013)
Best qualifying 1st Sao Paulo (2010) 14th Sepang (2013)
Points 2013 5 (currently 15th) 0 (currently 16th)
Points in total 90 -
The Sauber F1 Team has 5 points to its tally and currently holds 8th place in the Constructors’ Championship.

 

source: Sauber F1 Team, sauberf1team.com

Sahara Force India F1 Team

Sahara Force India F1 Team

2013 Formula 1 Santander British Grand Prix Preview.

Vijay’s Vision

Team Principal, Dr Vijay Mallya, looks forward to the team’s local race.

There is always something special about racing at Silverstone. After the Indian Grand Prix, we regard Silverstone as our second ‘home’ race. Our headquarters is just across the road and everyone in the team feels a touch of pride in racing on what we consider ‘our’ turf. It is also a special place, the venue where the very first Formula One World Championship race was held and one which can boast some of the most passionate fans in the world.

Two exciting races in Monaco and Canada have set us up perfectly for this weekend’s event. We celebrated our 100th race in Canada and continued picking up points with both cars. That’s what we need to do if we are to hold on to fifth place in the championship. While I still believe that we are edging ever closer to the podium, we must also focus on consistency and play the long game in the championship, which means scoring points at every race.

In the past we’ve never had great success at Silverstone, so we are keen to put that right this year. It’s a home race for Paul and I’m sure the whole team can count on lots of support from the British fans. Performance-wise, I expect us to be competitive. We have a couple of small upgrades so I’m optimistic that we can be fighting for our usual position inside the top ten.

Dr Vijay Mallya

Team Principal and Managing Director

 

Paul on Silverstone

Paul, you’ve been in the points in six out of seven races – that’s some good consistency…

I think we can be pretty happy with that. All things considered we’ve managed to get some good results and kept up our momentum. The last two results, in particular, felt very satisfying, especially because we managed to get the strategy spot on to come through the field. These results set us up nicely for this weekend, which is a massive one for everyone in the team.

Tell us about your emotions ahead of the weekend…

It’s always a highlight of the year. When I was young I dreamed about coming to Silverstone as a Formula One driver so it’s always a very special weekend. As a venue it’s spectacular with some of the greatest corners of the year and the atmosphere is just incredible. The place is packed all weekend and the buzz from the fans gives you so much energy.

What are your expectations for the race?

With the way our car is working these tyres at the moment, we are looking really healthy. I believe this car is the best we’ve ever had and everyone in the team is working hard to squeeze even more performance from it. The key for Silverstone is to hopefully get three successful days in a row on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. That’s what we did in Bahrain and it really paid off. If we can do it at Silverstone, then hopefully we can make a big impact on the race.

 

Adrian on Silverstone

Adrian, after points in the last couple of races you must be feeling positive ahead of Silverstone…

I think it was important to have these results, especially the fifth place in Monaco, because it helps you forget some of the missed opportunities from earlier in the season. Canada was another race where we had good speed and considering everything that happened to me during the race it was good to come away with a point. As a team we’ve shown just how competitive we can be, but I feel there is still much more to come.

Silverstone is loved by most drivers – are you a fan of the track?

It’s not my top favourite, but it’s a great place to drive a Formula One car. It’s fast and flowing, so it’s quite a big change from Monaco and Canada, but I’m confident that we can go there and perform well. I enjoy the high-speed sections and also the newer start of the lap, which definitely makes it easier to overtake compared to the old layout.

It’s a local and busy race for the team – what is your plan for the week?

I will be in the UK for the whole week. There’s a simulator session on Wednesday to prepare for the weekend and I will be spending a lot of time at the factory. It’s a good chance to spend more time with the team members who don’t come to races.

source: Sahara Force India F1 Team, forceindiaf1.com

09 - Williams F1

Williams F1

British gp preview

  • When: Friday 28th – Sunday 30th June, 2013
  • Where: Silverstone, England
  • Round: 8 of 19

Mike Coughlan, Technical Director: This weekend is the Williams F1 Team’s home race and it is always great to be amongst all our fans. It is also one of our most successful races, with ten wins in total for the team in Britain. The new circuit layout, introduced in 2010, has the second highest average speed of any circuit on the calendar, behind Monza, and the average corner speed is the highest of any circuit this season.

Ambient conditions are typically cool which means good engine power and less chance of thermal degradation in the tyres. The track is relatively rough and tyre energy input is high, higher than Barcelona but much more evenly balanced across the left and right hand sides of the car and more towards the front. Longer range forecasts predict a dry and sunny weekend but whatever conditions we meet, we will be pushing hard to continue the development of the FW35.

Pastor Maldonado: This weekend has been something that the team have been looking forward to all year and I’m proud to be part of this historic moment. Silverstone also happens to be one of my favourite circuits on the calendar. It has a lot of character and some very iconic corners, and the British fans are always very passionate and knowledgeable. With the track being quick and the temperatures usually low it is easy to grain the front tyres and this is something we will have to manage and consider when deciding on the pit stop strategy. The new part of the track is still very green with less grip which is something you have to bear in mind when behind the wheel. Hopefully we can have a strong weekend and score some points to make the weekend even more memorable for the team.

Valtteri Bottas: This is going to be a very special weekend for Williams, celebrating 600 races in front of our home fans at a track which has a lot of history for the team and is great fun to drive. Silverstone is a classic racers track – with some very high speed corners which require a lot of downforce in order to be quick through them. I drove in FP1 last year and at the Young Drivers Test so I have experience of driving a Formula One car at Silverstone which is always helpful in getting up to speed quickly. Normally the track is quite tough on the tyres with quite a bit of graining because the temperatures are cool and the track is very demanding. The weather never makes the circuit any easier due to the often rainy and cold conditions, but after our strong qualifying in Canada in wet conditions I’m confident we would handle this well.

Rémi Taffin, Renault Sport F1 Head of Track Operations: Even with the addition of the new slow loop, Silverstone remains one of the toughest challenges for the engine. A touch over 66% of the lap is spent at full throttle in qualifying and the average speed is well over 200kph. However it is the high speed corners that also challenge the RS27, particularly the sweeping Maggotts-Beckett-Chapel complex. Average speeds through this section are around 250kph and no lower than 190kph at any one point, with huge lateral forces put through the car. The oil and fuel systems therefore have to be resilient as the fluids are squashed from side to side, while the engine needs to be smooth to maintain the speed.

Paul Hembery, Pirelli Motorsport Director: The contrast between Silverstone and the last round in Montreal couldn’t be greater: we go from a circuit that’s stop-and-start with big braking areas and aggressive kerbs to one of the fastest and most flowing tracks of the year. We’ve chosen the two hardest compounds in the Formula One range – P Zero Orange hard and P Zero White medium – in order to cope with the high-energy loadings that go hand in hand with the high average speeds you see in Great Britain. The track surface is very smooth, but wear and degradation can be considerable because of all the forces going through the tyres, which peak at around 5g. The big variable in Silverstone is of course the British weather – which is capable of anything. We’ve seen wet and dry races in the past but at the same time it can be very hot too. And obviously, the higher the temperature, the more demands are placed on the tyre. This will be the determining factor for tyre strategy at Silverstone, which as we have seen in the past often has a key influence in the race outcome. Of course strategy begins in qualifying, and we saw from Valtteri Bottas’s Saturday performance in Canada just what a difference it makes to be on the right tyre at the right time.

source: Williams F1, williamsf1.com

Scuderia Toro Rosso logo

Scuderia Toro Rosso

coming soon

source: Scuderia Toro Rosso, tororosso.com

Team Caterham logo

Team Caterham

British Grand PrixView

General
Race Laps: 52
Pitlane altitude (m): 102
2012 air / track temp (°c): 25 / 31
2012 ATM pressure (HPA): 990
2012 humidity (%): 45
2012 wind (kph): NNE 20

Timing
2012 Qualifying (wet)
P1: ALO (1:51.746 Q3)
P2: WEB (1:51.793 Q3)
P3: MSC (1:52.020 Q3)
CF1T best: P19 PET (1:49.027 Q1)

2012 Race
P1: WEB (1:34.340) L49
P2: ALO (1:35.385) L49
P3: VET (1:34.897) L52
CF1T best: P17 KOV (1:38.050) L37

Quick description
High fuel effect and one the most “lateral grip” tracks on the calendar
Generally low grip
Very easy on brakes
Overtaking is difficult
Wind has a big effect on top speed which can be reached either in T9, T11 or T15
Starting grid on old low grip tarmac up to P18
S3 and pitlane entry remain wet longer than the rest of the track
Track partly re-surfaced in 2011

Circuit Particularity
Bumpiness: medium / high
Overtaking chance: low
Kerbs: smooth
Ride height setting particularity: limited by bumps
Engine severity: low
Gearbox severity: low
Lat/Long grip: lateral
Aero eff ratio: medium / high
Safety car history: 2012- none, 2011 – none, 2010- 1(28-30)
Track grip evo during w/e: medium / high
Aero settings: high
Brake wear severity: very low
Brake cooling necessity: low

Driver Quotes

Giedo van der Garde, car #21, CT03-#04: “Silverstone’s next up and it’ll be another very busy weekend for us. For us, like quite a few of the teams, the British Grand Prix is a home race so it’s one everyone looks forward to. In fact I’m pretty lucky – we have Malaysia and Silverstone as home races for the team and, for me, Spa will also count as a home race as that’ll be where most Dutch fans go, so I get three chances a year to race in front of our biggest supporters!

“The track itself is obviously one we know really well. I’ve been racing there for many years, I won in 2008 in Formula Renault 3.5 but didn’t have so much luck in the last couple of years in GP2 so the aim is to turn that around, and get back to the progress we saw on track in Spain. We’ve spent a lot of time in the simulator at Leafield around Silverstone and, even with the changes they made to the F1 layout a couple of years ago, I’ve driven a lot of kilometres around there so there’s no surprises. Like everywhere else it’ll be interesting to see how the tyres behave – the track evolves quite a bit over the weekend so we’ll be looking to manage that as well as possible so we have room to play with strategy on Sunday.

“It’s also going to be a pretty busy weekend outside the cockpit. We have various team partner events throughout the week and then Charles, Cyril and I are heading back to Leafield after quali on Saturday to go and catch up with the factory team and their families. As we’re racing so close to the factory it’s one of the few chances we have in the season when both Charles and I are in the UK together so it’ll be cool to go and see the guys who work so hard back at base and thank them for what they do. Whatever happens on track it’s going to be a good week!”

Charles Pic, car #20, CT03-#06: “Next we have our second home race of the season and my second F1 race at Silverstone. I won at Silverstone in Renault World Series a couple of times back in 2008 / 2009 and even though the track was reshaped since then it’s still a circuit I know very well, and one I really enjoy racing on.

“The British Grand Prix is one of the races, like Canada and Germany, which is a real favourite for the fans. It’s a pretty special feeling seeing how many people are on track on Thursday when the cars aren’t even running! The British fans just love F1 and as the race takes place so close to home for a lot of the guys in the team I know how much it means to them to do well there.

“For us it’s important to get back to the sort of progress we saw in Bahrain and Spain. We were running well in the race in Monaco until we had to retire the car, but Canada wasn’t a good weekend for us so everyone’s been working extremely hard to help us reverse what we saw in Montreal. Silverstone’s another quick track and it’s usually not too warm, but we’re doing a lot of work on setups and the session plans at Leafield before we get to the track, in the simulator and with the engineers, so we’re well prepared and I’m confident we can find the increased performance we saw in Barcelona.”

source: Team Caterham, caterhamf1.com

Marussia F1 Team logo

Marussia F1 Team

DESTINATION: SILVERSTONE

What we’re saying about the 2013 Formula 1 Santander British Grand Prix

As a Russian-owned Team performing on an international stage but with its operational base in the heart of the UK’s motorsport valley, the Marussia F1 Team is all set to celebrate the occasion of its ‘home’ race, the 2013 Formula 1 Santander British Grand Prix, which takes place at Silverstone next weekend (28-30 June). This season, the Team is proud to be fielding a British driver for the first time in its young history and Max Chilton, along with the three other British drivers, can look forward to racing in front of some of the world’s most passionate motorsport fans, at one of the most exhilarating circuits on the F1 calendar.

Jules Bianchi, Driver #22

“I’m really looking forward to the Team’s home race at Silverstone. I know from Monaco what it feels like to have achieved your dream of racing in Formula One and then be able to do just that in front of your home crowd, so it will be a nice weekend for Max. It is also an important weekend for the whole Team and I too will be looking to achieve my objectives – to contribute to a good overall team result and keep up the fight with the cars around us. We will have a lot of our team members who don’t usually get to a race present and that is really important and nice for them, to be able to see us racing so close to our base. As for the track, I really like it, having raced here before in different formulae. It is one of the best tracks on the calendar in my opinion – very fast, challenging and technical. I’ve done some good preparation and now I can’t wait to start running on Friday.”

Max Chilton, Driver #23

“The British Grand Prix is really special, and for so many reasons, so to be able to call it my home Grand Prix is pretty incredible and without doubt it will be the highlight of my debut season so far. It is also the Team’s home race and Silverstone is just 18 miles from our base in Banbury, so we’re racing in our own backyard with fantastic support from our fans, our Team and our Partners right here on our doorstep. It doesn’t get much better than that, apart from bringing home a great result of course, which is what we’ll all be pushing for. I know from having raced at Silverstone previously that the atmosphere is electric, with a sea of Union Jack flags and some big noise coming from the grandstands. I’m sure it will be better than ever this year with four British drivers in the mix. As for the circuit itself, it has always been a real driver’s track with a character all if its own. The high-speed corners make it really exciting to drive, particularly Copse, Becketts and Stowe. We have a few small developments for this race but we are also still making progress with the updates we brought prior to that, so I’m optimistic that we will be able to put a good weekend together on track. Off-track, it’s looking very busy but exciting, with a lot of media activity and appearances. All in all, I can’t wait.”

John Booth, Team Principal, Marussia F1 Team

“The British Grand Prix is always a fantastic occasion and one of the highlights of the calendar for teams and fans alike. We are proud to be the only Anglo-Russian team on the grid and next year we will have two home races to celebrate, but for now, with our operational base in Banbury, Silverstone continues to be ‘home asphalt’ for us. We are also delighted to be fielding a British driver for the first time in our brief history. Max is, quite rightly, very excited to be racing in front of his home crowd for the first time in a Formula One car and, if the atmosphere we have seen there in previous years is anything to go by, he’ll thoroughly enjoy the support for him and the other British drivers. The British fans are incredible; so knowledgeable and enthusiastic. They are very patriotic but equally, they’ll back whoever shines there next weekend because they just love to see a great race at the end of the day. We hope to play our part in the racing action and we’ll be aiming for the best possible finish with both our drivers to maintain our fight for position in the Constructors’ Championship and to reward the Team members and our Partners, many of whom will be sharing in the occasion with us. We look forward to a great weekend and a classic British Grand Prix.”

source: Marussia F1 Team, marussiavirginracing.com

Pirelli logo

Pirelli

 

British Grand Prix Preview: Silverstone, 28-30 June 2013

 

HARD AND MEDIUM TYRES FOR RACE; PROTOTYPE TYRES FOR FREE PRACTICE

Pirelli will bring the P Zero Orange hard and P Zero White medium tyres to Silverstone for the British Grand Prix: effectively a second home race for the Italian squad, whose UK logistics hub at Didcot is less than an hour away from the Northamptonshire circuit.

There will also be two sets per car of the same prototype hard tyres seen in Spain, available for use in Friday’s two free practice sessions only.

Silverstone is one of the oldest and fastest circuits on the Formula One calendar, having benefitted from extensive revisions over recent years. The rapid circuit layout means that plenty of energy is put through the tyres, with a consequent effect on wear and degradation. In the past, teams have used strategy to their advantage on this track, resulting in some close finishes even with different tactics being employed.

Paul Hembery: “Silverstone, with its very high average speeds and flowing series of corners, presents an extreme contrast to Canada three weeks ago – which was much more stop and start. Like Canada, it’s a circuit that takes a lot out of the tyres, but for very different reasons. We’ve brought the two hardest compounds to the British Grand Prix because of that, with a new bonding process connecting the tread to the steel belt, which is designed to eliminate the isolated delamination issues to reach a unanimous agreement about this: however, we do still have that possibility on stand-by should it be required in future. During free practice at Silverstone we will have the same prototype hard seen earlier this season. The actual construction of the tyre won’t change, as the teams weren’t able tyre available that we tried out on Friday in Spain, aimed at even greater durability than our current hard. This is in order to give the teams the chance to test this new compound on a different track to collect more data. Of course another important factor at Silverstone is the notoriously variable British weather: it would be no big surprise to see the Cinturato Green intermediate and Cinturato Blue full wet brought into play at some point. For that reason, it’s quite hard to predict the number of pit stops on race day. Last year we saw a two-stop strategy in dry conditions after two wet days but this year the compounds are softer, so if it stays dry we could have between three and four stops. We should be in a position to make a more precise forecast after free practice. Finally, and most importantly, we would like to pass on our sincere condolences to Allan Simonsen’s family and friends following the terrible accident at Le Mans last weekend. We were Aston Martin Racing’s partners for many years, and we can only imagine what they must be going through now.”

Jean Alesi: “The real thing to watch out for in Silverstone is always the weather: absolutely anything can happen, and it’s often both wet and dry. You need to think on your feet. It’s a demanding circuit on the tyres, not so much because of traction and braking, but more because of the high levels of downforce that are always pushing down on the car, as a result of the very high speeds. This is what creates the tyre wear at Silverstone and so the hard and the medium tyres are a good choice. As a driver, I’ve been on the podium at Silverstone many times and always enjoyed it, in various configurations. The latest alteration with the new pit complex is a very impressive investment, but for me it’s a shame they took away Bridge corner: that used to be a fantastic challenge. In any case, Silverstone will always be a real drivers’ circuit, so I think we can look forward to a good race, less politics, and some interesting strategies. It’s always a pleasure to come here because the British fans are so knowledgeable and passionate about Formula One. There’s a real culture of motorsport in Great Britain, which I think everybody appreciates.”

The circuit from a tyre point of view:

While big speeds and high levels of lateral energy are the key characteristics of Silverstone, there are also some slower and more technical parts of the circuit where it has been modified in recent years. In those areas combined acceleration is particularly important. This happens when the driver is steering and accelerating at the same time on the exit of a corner: the work of the tyre is crucial here.

Many parts of the asphalt at Silverstone are new, with the new asphalt less bumpy and abrasive than the older sections. Abrasive asphalt increases grip, but also adds to levels of wear and degradation.

Last year a variety of strategies were seen following a wet qualifying session, which meant that the drivers could start on whichever slick compound they chose. Red Bull’s Mark Webber won the race from second on the grid, having started on the soft tyre before completing two stints on the hard tyre. Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso was on pole but finished second after doing the opposite: two initial stints on the hard tyre, then one on the soft tyre.

Further information about Silverstone and the demands it places on tyres, as well as more information about how tyres are allocated for each race, can be found on a 3D animated video starring Pirelli’s Racing Manager Mario Isola.

Technical tyre notes:

High-speed stability is particularly important at Silverstone, with braking energy extremely low. Downforce levels are medium: a compromise between ensuring enough aerodynamic grip to negotiate the fast corners as quickly as possible and eliminating drag on the straights.

Lateral accelerations on the tyres are among the highest of the season, peaking at 5g. This means that the surface temperature of the tyre can exceed 110 degrees centigrade, towards the very top of its working range.

Silverstone is not one of the easiest circuits to overtake on, meaning that qualifying high up the grid and selecting a strategy that can help gain track position is vital. The new infield arena section after Abbey curve was inaugurated in 2011 to help promote overtaking.

The tyre choices so far:

  PZero Red PZero Yellow PZero White PZero Orange
Australia Supersoft   Medium  
Malaysia     Medium Hard
China   Soft Medium  
Bahrain     Medium Hard
Spain     Medium Hard
Monaco Supersoft Soft    
Canada Supersoft   Medium  
Great Britain     Medium Hard

Meet the Pirelli F1 Team: Matteo Albucci, F1 Travel Co-ordinator

Matteo is Pirelli’s Formula One travel co-ordinator, responsible for moving Pirelli’s team of 50 or so people all the way around the world. He’s an Italian who was born and studied in Florence – the city of Leonardo da Vinci – but he currently lives in Oxford, close to Pirelli’s UK logistics hub in Didcot. His background has always been in travel and tourism but now he has taken up a full-time role within the Italian firm. Like da Vinci, Matteo has to be a true Renaissance man: his wide-ranging role involves organising flights, hotels, hire cars and transfers for all Pirelli F1 personnel, as well as travel for GP2 and GP3 tests and races, not to mention the FIA GT Championship and Brazilian stock cars too. Outside of work, he perhaps surprisingly enjoys travel, but he also likes meeting friends and going to the gym. He describes himself as a pretty normal type of person – just don’t look for him on Facebook, as you won’t find him there…

Other news from Pirelli:

The Pirelli-backed GP3 Series had a stand-alone race in Valencia two weeks before the British Grand Prix. America’s Conor Daly won the opening race to lead home an ART Grand Prix one-two, while Robert Visoiu took his maiden win for MW Arden in race two. The medium GP3 compound was used, at the Ricardo Tormo permanent circuit.

The latest round of the Italian Rally Championship, the all-gravel Costa Smeralda Rally, took place on the island of Sardinia last weekend. Pirelli’s multiple champion Paolo Andreucci made a one-off appearance in a Peugeot 207 S2000, switching from his usual Peugeot 208 R2, and won the event by nearly a whole minute.

The Pirelli-backed Lamborghini Blancpain SuperTrofeo, billed as the world’s fastest one-make series, is heading to North America. The five round championship, for the race version of the Gallardo, gets underway from July 5-6 at Lime Rock, during the American Le Mans Series meeting there.

source: Pirelli, pirelli.com

Renault Sport F1 logo

Renault Sport F1

coming soon

source: renault.com

Cosworth logo

Cosworth

coming soon

source: Cosworth, www.cosworth.com/f1

 Mark Webber logo

Mark’s British GP Preview

Mark is the only news story in town ahead of this weekend’s British Grand Prix. This morning he announced his decision to leave Formula One at the end of this year, and he’s been the focus of media attention ever since. First up was the FIA press conference.

“The timing is perfect for me,” said Mark. “I’m starting a new chapter in my career with Porsche, one of the most respected brands in the world, and I’m very excited about it. There are big regulation changes in F1 next year and I feel that I might as well make big changes where my future lies.

“I’ll miss racing against guys like Fernando [Alonso] and Lewis [Hamilton], and I’ll miss the moment when the guys walk away from the car on the grid. That’s the best legal drug you can get. But you’re not 25 forever and it’s important to make the decision to move on at the right time, when you’re still performing at the top.”

Everyone wanted a slice of Mark, but he had to switch his focus to the British Grand Prix as well. This is a race that he’s won twice before, most recently last year, and he’s had a run of four consecutive podium finishes at the track.

“This is certainly a happy hunting ground for me,” says Mark. “I’ve had a lot of success here, both in F1 and in the junior categories, and Silverstone is one of the best circuits on the calendar from a driver’s perspective. Red Bull have been very quick here for the last few years and this year’s RB9 is a good platform from which to work.

“But I expect us to have some opposition this weekend. Fernando was very strong in Shanghai and Barcelona, and those circuits aren’t dissimilar to Silverstone. The fast corners will also be an acid test for the tyres and it’s going to be important to make sure you’re competitive in the last stint of the race.”

What also makes the British Grand Prix special is the fact that Mark can commute to Silverstone from his home near Aylesbury. That makes this his home-from-home race!

“Staying at home certainly gives the weekend a different pace to any other race,” says Mark. “I can walk the dogs on race morning, before heading to work. That’s pretty special.”

source: markwebber.com



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