Qualifying Press Conference – Italian Grand Prix
After a great Qualifying session which saw Scuderia Ferrari’s driver, Kimi Raikkonen take pole for the Italian Grand Prix tomorrow, the drivers then went to the Qualifying Press Conference to speak to the media and below, you can see what they all had to say about the session and of course, the race tomorrow.
TRACK INTERVIEWS – Qualifying Press Conference
Question: Kimi, we’ve just witnessed history, the fastest ever lap Formula 1 of Monza. How does it feel to get Ferrari a front-row lock-out?
Kimi Raikkonen: “Obviously it’s great for tomorrow, but it’s only half the job done and I think it couldn’t be a better place to be on pole position.”
“It’s our home grand prix, it’s in front of all the tifosi, so hopefully tomorrow everything goes smoothly and we end up in the same positions.”
Question: Well, you’ve given these guys something to cheer about. Ultimately, they are the strong point Ferrari, aren’t they?
Kimi Raikkonen: “They are, always. It doesn’t matter where we go around the world, but obviously here at our home grand prix it’s full of great tifosi. So hopefully tomorrow is as good as today.”
Question: Well all the best for that. Sebastian, second best today, but I don’t think the race is lost and these guys will be supporting you tomorrow?
Sebastian Vettel: “Yeah, it’s unbelievable to see the amount of support around the track, so grazie a tutti. It’s a good result for the team.”
“Not entirely happy with my last run, but yeah, I think Kimi was just a little bit too fast in the end.”
Question: We heard you on the radio saying ‘we’ll discuss it after’. Do you think that slipstream got off you made the difference?
Sebastian Vettel: “It is always like this in Monza and I think for him it was in a sweet spot. I think my last run was OK. My lap wasn’t very good, so yeah, I think we can have a look but for now it’s good to have both cars on the front row.”
Question: Lewis, you almost did it. An extraordinary lap at the beginning of the session but the Ferraris are showing to be very strong?
Lewis Hamilton: “Yeah, congratulations to Ferrari, they did a solid job today. We have it everything we could. It’s obviously incredibly close between us but they’ve had the upper hand all weekend.”
“We gave it everything we could today and we’ll give more tomorrow.”
Question: How hard are you working at the moment, Lewis, to make the difference and how hard are you going to work tonight to try to beat them tomorrow?
Lewis Hamilton: “Always… everyone in the team is working as hard as they can to make the difference. It’s incredibly close, as I said, as you can see, which is great for the sport.”
“It’s great to see so many fans here, regardless if they’re all Ferrari fans, it’s still great.”
Question : Kimi, it all came together for you at the end in Q3. Just talk us through that final lap and what it feels like to be back on top here at Monza, of all places?
Kimi Raikkonen: “If you need to choose, for our team it’s probably the best place to taker the pole position. Obviously we’ve been close a few times but it never really went right in the end.”
“It’s been a bit tricky, the second chicane, the whole day. The last run was pretty decent, let’s put it this way, enough for pole position.”
“Obviously there were a lot of games – who is going first, getting tows and this and that. But in the end, there was a train of cars and that’s enough.”
“The car’s been working well; obviously conditions have been a little tricky but nevertheless I don’t think we’ve changed the car at all since the first runs really. It all seems to be running pretty smoothly so far, so hopefully tomorrow it’s a similar situation.”
Question: Kimi, you got quite a reception on your slow down lap as well?
Kimi Raikkonen: “I don’t hear them. Obviously we know that we have a lot of fans, a lot of tifosi here, so I think being one and two is great but like I said it’s only half job done, so tomorrow is another important part, so hopefully we can give them another great result.”
Question: Sebastian, coming to you, it was so close at the top and in the end you just missed out. Was it at the second chicane? Can you just talk us through what happened at the end there?
Sebastian Vettel: “Yeah, my last lap I wasn’t happy with it and I think it was the only chance I had to get a shot at pole – so, well done to Kimi.”
“I think he had a very, very good lap, and did a great job, so it’s great to have the cars in one and two.”
Question: And Sebastian, can we just get your thoughts on the emotions. This is Ferrari’s 60th front row lock-out, and to do it here at Monza, were you feeling the passion of the tifosi as well?
Sebastian Vettel: “Every time you go out you see them go crazy, whether it’s practice or now in qualifying. That’s very nice to see.”
“Obviously, I’m not entirely happy with the end of my qualifying but probably that’s the emotion that is dominating now – but I think it’s great. It’s unbelievable before qualifying to see the flags.”
“Around the main straight, the banners they put up and the huge Ferrari logo. I think, yeah, it says ‘passion’ on the banner and I think that’s exactly what the people have.”
“A lot of joy, the whole weekend, screaming us forward. And they’re pushing us. So, it’s great to get the job done and get the cars on the front row.”
Question: Lewis, just a tenth and a half from the man on your right. What are your thoughts after that qualifying session?
Lewis Hamilton: “It was a fantastic qualifying session. Congratulations to Kimi. They knew that had the pace this weekend. It was going to take something quite special with the lap to catch them but it’s generally been that kind of distance between them all weekend.”
“Of course, we were hopeful that we might be able to give them a run for their money which, obviously the first qualifying lap was pretty good – but the second one was… it was still good but it could always be better.”
“It was just amazing how intense it was – and that’s how racing should be. So, I really enjoyed it thoroughly, to be honest.”