Valtteri Bottas: Can Alfa Romeo surprise in Monaco?
“If you consider our strength at low speed, then yes, it should go well. But there are so many more factors that come into play here, everything has to be perfect,” says Valtteri Bottas. He at least suggests that Alfa Romeo could also cut a fine figure in Monaco.
The previous form of his vehicle, Bottas has scored points in five out of six races, is definitely “encouraging”, says Bottas. He adds: “I can feel and see the motivation in the team.”
Why Lando Norris skips the PK
McLaren driver Lando Norris is not present at the press conference to fully recover from his tonsillitis. “We assume that he is fit enough to drive. We have obtained an exception for the press conference so that he can prepare for his driving as best as possible,” reports the team.
The first free practice session in Monaco is scheduled for 2 p.m.
Sebastian Vettel: New Aston Martin has not yet convinced
Aston Martin driver Sebastian Vettel is the first to be asked about the Barcelona update in the press conference. He speaks of a “big package” and says: “We haven’t seen a big leap in performance yet, but we’ve learned a lot. We expected more in qualifying, the race was okay.”
Much more was not expected when the modified car was used for the first time. “The most important thing was to understand where the car is with the update,” says Vettel. “We think the vehicle has a lot more potential with this other direction, otherwise we wouldn’t have converted it.”
Sergio Perez: The situation at Red Bull is “clear”
Whether the hierarchy in the team was also discussed during the discussion at Red Bull. Sergio Perez is asked whether he has the same chances of winning as Max Verstappen. He replies, “It’s pretty clear. That didn’t need to be said. It’s clear, otherwise I wouldn’t be here.”
And Perez is obviously uncomfortable with the question: his body language says he really doesn’t want to talk about the subject, but he does it anyway without really saying much.
A contract extension beyond 2022 has not yet been discussed. “Now that’s not the top priority,” says Perez. “It’s never easy to sign a contract with Helmut [Marko] and Christian [Horner] to do, but we will certainly tackle it soon.”
Monaco the “worst track” for new Formula 1 cars
Sergio Perez believes that the Circuit de Monaco will be “probably the worst track for the new cars” in Formula 1. Because the vehicles have gotten bigger and are not as good as their predecessors, especially at low speeds. “The view from the cockpit is also worse,” says Perez. “So maybe we’re seeing more errors.”
George Russell adds: “You might have to be a little more careful in the first practice session because the cars are so low and are set up very stiffly.”
George Russell: Mercedes has “turned the tide”
Mercedes driver George Russell believes the technical issues of the early stages of the 2022 season are history for the Silver Arrows. In the press conference he said: “We turned the tide. In the first five races we solved problems. Now they are solved and we can focus on performance. But we are five races behind. It’s good to see that we now have a stable car to build on.”
The atmosphere in the team is correspondingly good. But: “Morale was never down. We always believed in finding the performance. We just knew: It wouldn’t happen overnight. And it’s still incredibly impressive to have overcome the problem in just five races . Brackley and Brixworth have worked diligently to find solutions, and for that I am grateful.”
Sergio Perez: Discussion with the team has taken place
In Barcelona, Sergio Perez had reported the need to speak to the executive floor after directing the stable in favor of Max Verstappen. Before the Monaco Grand Prix, Perez can say: “We talked to each other. We agreed, we agree. The atmosphere is good.”
The analysis after the race showed that Verstappen’s strategy was the better one, which Perez did not capture in the Grand Prix. But now he says: “I have the full confidence of the team that they want to see me win.”
“You don’t have all the information in the car. I had the impression that things could have gone differently.”
Ricciardo on McLaren contract: “Until the end of 2023”
How long is Daniel Ricciardo still under contract with McLaren? There has been some confusion following Zak Brown’s recent comments. Now Ricciardo himself says: “By the end of 2023.” So it is actually clear, but: There is an afterthought, namely: “Let’s put it that way.” And Ricciardo grins. So maybe it’s not so clear after all…
From Ricciardo’s point of view, however, it is very clear how important Monaco is for Formula 1: “Saturday in Monaco is probably the highlight of the season. Definitely, if you get it right. You have to be resolute on every track, but there is more variables. You don’t have long straights to think about here either. You’re in the tunnel. And here one corner follows the other. It’s a really nice feeling, a privilege to drive here. It’s crazy in a positive sense. “
“It’s in your own hands here. If you’re one with the car, something special can come of it here. I’m looking forward to developing my full potential here.”
Hamilton: Mercedes wants to be able to win by Silverstone
Lewis Hamilton was asked whether he had a message for the fans who wanted to follow the Formula 1 race at Silverstone on site. Of course he has one. And it sounds like this: “Hopefully we’ll be where we want to be by then. I hope by Silverstone we’ll have the car ready to fight for victory. Everyone at the factory is working hard on it and I have every confidence in them the team.”
Hamilton on Russell: He doesn’t say much
Lewis Hamilton is asked for an assessment of his Mercedes teammate George Russell. Hamilton doesn’t say much, just: “It’s going well. We work well together. He is precise and constant in his feedback to the team. And he didn’t have to get used to it because he was already part of the team.”
Jewelry ban: Hamilton seems annoyed
The World Automobile Federation (FIA) has once again suspended the ban on jewelry and given drivers another grace period. How does Lewis Hamilton feel about this? Of course, a question came up for him in the press conference. And Hamilton seems annoyed: “To be honest, I have the impression that too much energy and time is wasted on it.”
“It’s positive that we work together here, but we shouldn’t talk about it every week. We have more important things to do.”
Leclerc: Barcelona defect has been cleared up
Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc is “confident that the mistake [aus Barcelona] will not occur again”. Leclerc was in the lead at the Spanish Grand Prix last weekend and failed due to damage to the engine area. Turbochargers and MGU-H are over.
In the Monaco press conference, Leclerc said: “We understood the problem. That’s the most important thing. And we made a few changes.”
After bankruptcies, bad luck and breakdowns at his Formula 1 home race, he now wishes a quiet but successful weekend. Original sound: “Hopefully 2022 is the year.”
How Ricciardo deals with the McLaren criticism
McLaren boss Zak Brown publicly counted Daniel Ricciardo before the Monaco Grand Prix – at least his statements can be understood as criticism of Ricciardo. How does Ricciardo react to this?
In the press conference, the McLaren driver said: “[Was er sagte,] is not wrong. That’s pretty much true. I don’t take the comment personally. I have thick skin. And no one is harder on themselves than me. I don’t want to fight for P10, I just want to be further up the field.”
His time at McLaren has been “exhausting” so far, but he continues to work “hard” with his team to finally make the breakthrough.
Now: The driver press conference in Monaco
After the brief review of the Senna-S, the outlook for the rest of the day’s program in the morning follows. It’s coming up: the drivers’ press conference in Monaco, with the following line-up:
from 10:30 a.m
Esteban Ocon (Alpine), Charles Leclerc (Ferrari), Kevin Magnussen (Haas), Daniel Ricciardo (McLaren), Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
from 11:00 a.m
Guanyu Zhou (Alfa Romeo), Yuki Tsunoda (AlphaTauri), George Russell (Mercedes), Sergio Perez (Red Bull), Nicholas Latifi (Williams)
from 11:30 a.m
Valtteri Bottas (Alfa Romeo), Lance Stroll (Aston Martin), Sebastian Vettel (Aston Martin), Lando Norris (McLaren), Alex Albon (Williams)
from 12:00 p.m
Pierre Gasly (AlphaTauri), Fernando Alonso (Alpine), Carlos Sainz (Ferrari), Mick Schumacher (Haas), Max Verstappen (Red Bull)
And here in the live ticker we present the most important statements from the drivers before the start of practice, which takes place at 2 p.m. today.
How Williams justified the logo-off
Ayrton Senna only drove for Williams in 1994 and was killed in an accident on May 1, 1994 at the San Marino Grand Prix. As a reminder of this tragic accident, the aforementioned Senna-S was emblazoned on all Williams cars for several years – until 2021.
Williams boss Jost Capito explained before the 2022 season why the Senna-S is now missing: “We decided to look ahead. We didn’t want to show the S to the drivers every time they get in the car to remind them to remember what happened.” Williams honors Senna in a different way, namely with a special “Senna area” in the in-house motorsport museum.
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