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British GP: Post Qualifying press conference

NEWS STORY
05/07/2014

Nico, a very dramatic conclusion to that qualifying session. Right at the end you took pole position. Were you surprised by how much the track improved, particularly in the final sector, right at the end, after we'd had that rain?
Nico Rosberg: Yeah, I mean, a quite crazy qualifying, just changing all the time and that makes it very, very difficult. In the end last qualifying also. On he first lap with the soft tyres it started to rain quite a lot, just in the last three corners, so lost a lot of time there and then everywhere else it was quite wet also on the in-lap, so I was sure, I told the guys already "that's it". And then we were sitting in the box and we just came to a general conclusion: "might as well go out and have a look at the track". At least… because if you don't have a look, there's no chance but if you have a look there's a tiny chance, so at least go out and have a look. It seemed like we should give it a go but even then I still didn't believe that the track would be better. But what made it was the last sector, because everywhere on the track was just a little bit slower, because it was just damp here and there and a little bit wet. But I knew that I had lost four seconds on the previous lap, so even if I was slower than that lap, I still had the chance of going a lot quicker in those last three corners if it was halfways dry and that's the way it turned out: I made the time in those last corners because it a lot drier and it just worked out perfectly. Even across the line, in Lewis' gearbox - because I had to be there because otherwise it went red. I had to be as fast as possible in order to be able to do that last lap. So as I crossed the line it went red, like instantly, it was a very, very close call. I think all in all it was a very good team-mate effort; everybody working together, my engineers, together with me just made all the right calls and it worked out. It's fantastic to have such a qualifying, where everything goes well in the end and a comfortable pole in the end. It's awesome.

Very well done. Well, if it was a bonus for Nico, you actually had to do a lap didn't you Sebastian, because you didn't have a time on the board when you went out at the end there, so you were down in 10th place. What was going through your mind as you were going round the circuit? Did you think your goose was cooked?
Sebastian Vettel: Well, to be honest at the start of Q3 we went out, I think one of the last cars. And on my out lap, just preparing the flying lap, it started to rain, so I got that wet last sector to start the lap and obviously then there was no point, we aborted the lap, because at that time it was impossible to set a decent time on slick tyres. Then we were back in the garage waiting and we said "OK, we might as well go out. If we go out on inters it will be difficult to beat the lap times that were set, so we go out on dry tyres." We were one of the first to go out for one flying lap in the end. It was quite difficult to believe on the out lap that it would be dry enough but it's a funny place. It was a very weird session. A lot of rain, no rain, drizzling, very fine rain, nearly like spray: I think England is the only country where you can get this sort of rain and conditions and changing so quickly. Incredibly difficult to know what was coming so on the flying lap you approach turn one and turn on is a pretty big balls corner, so it's difficult to know how much risk you can take. Eventually you have to take some risk because, especially in my case, I wanted to set a lap. So obviously very happy that it turned out. Yeah, very positive and starting from the front row tomorrow.

Very well done. And you Jenson? Changeable conditions as Sebastian was saying and you were there or thereabouts throughout the qualifying session as the lap times went up and down. How happy are you with the result you've achieved today?
Jenson Button: Like you cannot believe. I know it's only a third in qualifying but for us at the moment, and for the last 18 months, this is… well, we had no chance of getting this result. Yeah, it's nice in front of the home crowd to qualifying well and all the way through qualifying, as you said, the pace was there. No compared to the Mercedes, but with everyone else the pace was there. When I did my lap in Q1 on the option tyre in the dry I was about two seconds quicker than anyone when I did it. Made the mistake of losing the rear in the last corner, so it was disallowed. I thought I was going to be out, so to come through and be third in Q3 is a good result for today and I'm really happy that I could do it here in front of the home crowd.

Coming back to you Nico, obviously you're on pole with your team-mate and championship rival Lewis Hamilton down in sixth place going into the British Grand Prix tomorrow. Your thoughts on the race?
NR: Yeah, of course, with regards to the championship, it's good for me that Lewis is down in sixth. It will take him some time I think to fight through, though I expect him to come through quite quickly. And then I think very like we'll be racing each other again. We seem to very quick here. This track really suits the car, more so than Austria, so I think it's going to be a good battle again. Of course starting from pole is the best possible place and I'm very confident for the race.

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