DRIVERS: Nick HEIDFELD (BMW Sauber), Heikki KOVALAINEN (Lotus), Nico ROSBERG (Mercedes), Vitaly PETROV (Renault), Mark WEBBER (Red Bull)
PRESS CONFERENCE TRANSCRIPT
Q. Vitaly, a lot of new circuits coming up that are new to you. This is the first one. What do you do to prepare for a new circuit like this?
Vitaly PETROV: Play PlayStation. Then I try to watch as much as possible the videos from on-board cameras and the team helps me a lot to prepare. I do some simulator work at home and watch a lot of videos from the on-board camera and bits like this.
Q. A lot has been talked about your future. What is your attitude to that as there are some quite heavy hitters being muted to come into your team?
VP: I am not worried. I do my job. I know what I am doing. Why must I worry? They must worry. I think I will continue to do my job and I think everything looks good.
Q. Is this a good circuit for Renault given how well the cars went in Monaco?
VP: Yeah, I think it is a good circuit for our car, our team. I think we will be quite strong here. I hope everything will be good for us. We will see.
Q. Where is the car strong?
VP: Braking, through the corner, exits, everywhere a little. It will be good, I think.
Q. Heikki, the battle with the Virgin cars is the most important for you I guess at this stage of the season.
Heikki KOVALAINEN: Yes, absolutely. We want to finish ahead of them in the championship, so the direct competition is against them and we are not developing our car anymore, so we are not expecting to move forward. That will be our task for next year, I think. At the moment we are trying to maximize the performance we have got and I think we have a good chance to stay ahead of Virgin, so that is our target.
Q. What is your future with the team? Are you signed for next year?
HK: I know where I want to be. That's all I can say. Otherwise let's leave it at that at the moment and just focus on the coming weekend.
Q. And the future of the team. How do you see that?
HK: I think there is a lot of potential and I think it will get better. The car will get quicker, so I see it is a very strong future for the team. Who knows how long it will take to arrive at the very top but I think it has got all the potential and the team has got all the commitment, so I think it is a strong option.
Q. Is this a busy grand prix for you as a driver for Lotus?
HK: Yeah, fairly busy. It is one of the busier ones for us. We have a lot of our partners coming to see the race and we pay a lot of visits to different events, so it is going to be quite a busy weekend for us but it is no problem.
Q. Nico, a circuit you like, I imagine, given that you had your best ever result here?
Nico ROSBERG: It is probably not one of my favorite racetracks but it is a very challenging track which makes it interesting and also to get the perfect lap is very difficult here as there are so many corners, bumps, curves, different types of corners, so it is good. I have always had a good run here. I think I go well on this track, so I look forward to coming here every time.
Q. Is the potential for rain a bit of a worry? How is that going to affect things?
NR: Yeah, it is a bit of a concern. How is it going to be if there is a lot of rain with the lights, with everything on the track, rivers and things like that. It is very much unknown. But until now I think it has been alright, especially for qualifying and the race. It shouldn't be wet but first free practice could be very interesting tomorrow.
Q. That is your weather forecast, is it?
NR: I have been here since Sunday and it is pretty much the same every day, so I think that is a good possibility.
Q. The team or the car seem to be better in the race rather than qualifying. Is that a correct take?
NR: It is difficult to say. Maybe we have had a bit of a tendency like that recently but I am not sure. I think in general we are on a level behind the top three teams at the moment and trying to stay ahead of Renault and I think we can do that toward the end of the season.