2012 MALAYSIAN GRAND PRIX
Sepang, Sunday March 25
“Today was a roll of the dice – but we’ve shown we’ve got good pace”
Fastest lap 1m41.539s (+0.817s, 6th)
Pitstops Three: laps 5, 14 and 41 (Inter-Full Wet-Inter-Op)
Points 30 (2nd)
“This was a tough but fascinating race – firstly, I want to offer my congratulations to Fernando [Alonso] and Sergio [Perez] – they both drove great races and did a fantastic job.
“It was pretty eventful race: it was difficult trying to judge the best time to change from Extreme Wets to Intermediates, and we were probably a little late on that – but that’s how it goes sometimes.
“Today wasn’t perfect – making the call for slicks is always a risk, and the others went a bit earlier than us. In general, we lost some time in the pitstops and I was pushed out of the fight somewhat. But, all in all, it’s been a positive weekend and I’m not too frustrated. My aim for this season was always to be consistent – I did it in 2007 so I’m trying to repeat that!
“A big thanks to Lucozade for doing such a great job with the new race hydration formulations this weekend – they’ve really made a difference in such a hot and humid climate. For me, the next races will be all about converting our really strong qualifying pace into equally strong race pace – that’s what I’ll be working in the few weeks ahead of the Chinese Grand Prix.”
Fastest lap 1m42.100s (+1.378s, 14th)
Pitstops Five: laps 4, 13, 15, 24 and 39 (Inter-Full Wet-Inter-Inter (& front wing change)-Inter-Op)
2011 points 25 (3rd)
“Today was a pretty difficult day; pretty much everything that could have gone wrong in the race did go wrong. And that’s just one of those things – a lot of my issues were brought on when I wiped my front wing off at the start: I locked up the rears, couldn’t slow the car down and hit Karthikeyan, which was a bit frustrating. So I had to pit for a new nose, and that was pretty much it.
“And it’s always going to be tough when you’re down in 14th or 15th position. All the cars were so close and it was difficult to overtake, too. That made it very difficult.
“Big congratulation to Fernando, Sergio and Lewis, who scored more good points for the team – but it just wasn’t a good day for me today. The amazing thing is that I’m still third in the championship after not scoring any points!
“This wasn’t really the result I wanted – but, hey, chin up: we’ll move forwards and hopefully have a much better weekend in China!”
Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes
“Today certainly wasn’t the day I was expecting! Firstly, this was a terrific race for Ferrari and a great result for Sauber – congratulations to both teams. It’s frustrating for us, as the race didn’t really go our way, but today’s result is great for the sport of Formula 1.
“For Jenson, it was simply a bad day in the office – losing a front wing in tricky conditions was always going to make it a hard afternoon for him.
“Lewis was somewhat unlucky, too: Ferrari’s ‘double-shuffle’ pitstop meant we were obliged to hold Lewis in his pitbox longer than we would have liked, but that’s motor racing. Nevertheless, he brought home some extremely valuable world championship points – his 15 points today consolidate Vodafone McLaren Mercedes’ position at the top of the constructors’ championship.
“Today’s conditions were always going to represent something of a roll of the dice. We didn’t quite manage everything today, and we’ll go back and analyse our performance, but in normal dry conditions we’ve shown that we’ve got decent pace. There’s a long season ahead, and with one victory and two strong podium positions, we can return to Europe extremely encouraged about the forthcoming races.”