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      Exclusive Jean-Eric Vergne Q&A: Finishing '14 on a high the aim

Around this time last year Jean-Eric Vergne saw team mate Daniel Ricciardo beat him to the much-prized Red Bull Racing drive for 2014. Twelve months on and he’s having to deal with being replaced at Toro Rosso for 2015 - by a teenaged rookie. Is Vergne managing to remain philosophical about it all, and what are his plans for next season? We caught up with the Frenchman ahead of this weekend’s Singapore race to find out
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      Valtteri Bottas Q&A: Williams can still win races this season

Four times this season Williams’ Valtteri Bottas has finished on the podium, but that all-important first victory still eludes him. However, according to Bottas, six rounds remaining means six more chances to put that right. First, though, he has to get to grips with the clampdown on pit-to-car radio messages - something he believes could have cost him race finishes earlier in the year
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      Nico Rosberg Q&A: Radio restrictions will enliven F1

New regulations limiting pit-to-driver radio transmissions have been the major talking point in the Singapore paddock. One man backing the change is current championship leader Nico Rosberg, who believes drivers will have greater freedom - meaning their own instincts, and not those of the pit wall, will determine the outcome of Grands Prix
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      Singapore GP – A living sculpture

Singapore, 18 September – Fernando Alonso attended a UPS event at Singapore’s Clarke Quay today. He unveiled a Formula 1 car made entirely of bark and fittonia, a tropical evergreen plant, which represented team-work and efficiency. UPS dedicated it to the city-state that has hosted one of the most evocative rounds of the Formula 1 World Championship since 2008. It took famous horticulturist Alan Wong and his team eight weeks to produce the sculpture, as a tribute to the partnership between Ferrari and its logistics sponsor. And just like a real Formula 1 car, it is always in a state of updating and development, getting better all the time.

via Scuderia Ferrari

      Singapore GP – Raikkonen: “I still want to get good results”

Singapore, 18 September – Called to attend the formal setting of today’s FIA Press Conference, Kimi Raikkonen inevitably had less to say than his team-mate who spoke earlier at the Scuderia Ferrari hospitality. However, the first topic was the same for both men, namely the ban on various radio communications. Of course the Finn is famous for telling his race engineer over the radio two years ago (when driving for a different team) to leave him alone as he knew what he was doing! The quote has gone down in F1 history and today, Kimi seemed to continue in that belief. “We don’t spend a lot of time on the radio in my case, usually when there are no issues,” began the Ferrari man. “It might get more complicated if there are problems with the car and we have to change things to finish the race. It could be more complex, but that’s part of the game.”

Raikkonen has endured a difficult season so far, but it hasn’t dented his determination to keep searching for success. “For the rest of the season, we are going to try as hard as we can, because I still want to get good results for me and for the team,” he insisted. “ It’s going to be difficult and of course this season was not what we hoped for as we expected to do better. But there have been some pretty good improvements from us as a team and I am happier. But there is still a lot of work to do.” Hardly surprising that the driver known as “The Iceman” was unconcerned about the tropical weather here. “In the past it’s not been a problem for me, in fact, it doesn’t feel as hot or humid as in the past and also, this year, the cars are slower.”

via Scuderia Ferrari

      FIA Thursday press conference - Singapore

Drivers – Marcus Ericsson (Caterham), Pastor Maldonado (Lotus), Sergio Perez (Force India), Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari) Adrian Sutil (Sauber), Jean-Eric Vergne (Toro Rosso) Q: First of all, a question to all of you about the ban on large amounts of radio traffic between the team and the driver. What’s your reaction to this?
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      Singapore GP – Racing in miniature

Singapore, 18 September – The Shell V-Power LEGO range was given its world launch today in Singapore, the event getting underway with a race in miniature. Taking part in the mini-challenge were Kimi Raikkonen, representing Scuderia Ferrari and Ian Albiston, Shell’s Technology Manager. They were joined by two students who are taking part in the Shell Eco Marathon Asia, a project run by the Scuderia’s technical sponsor, based on sustainable mobility and on alternative forms of energy.

At the end of the special race, Kimi took part in the unveiling of 1:2 scale models of an F138, a 250 GTO, a 512s and an F12 berlinetta, all made entirely of Lego bricks. The models are some of the cars and playsets born out of the collaboration between Ferrari and the LEGO group. They will soon be available in miniature versions from distributors. It took over a year and a half to produce the new collection that features the introduction of the smallest pull-back motor ever built by the LEGO Group, capable of propelling the cars over a distance greater than two metres.

via Scuderia Ferrari

      Singapore GP – Precision testing

Singapore, 18 September –With Singapore hosting the fourteenth round of the Formula 1 World Championship, Kimi Raikkonen’s weekend got underway with a challenge measured to the nearest millimetre. This morning, the Ferrari man was the guest of honour at a very exclusive event staged by Hublot, on the fifth anniversary of the opening of its Marina Bay Sands shop. The Finn tackled assembling the casing of a Big Bang Ferrari “UNICO movimento,” one of the watch models produced in limited numbers, dedicated to the Maranello marque.

Raikkonen demonstrated great precision as he handled the delicate movement of the watch, just one of a vast range, which also includes the Ferrari “Official Watch” and the “Official Timekeeper” in the range produced by the famous brand, a Sponsor of the Scuderia since 2011.

via Scuderia Ferrari

      Singapore GP – Alonso: “Ferrari is bigger than any one individual”

Singapore, 18 September – In slightly cooler conditions than we have come to expect here in the Tropics, Fernando Alonso faced the press for the first time this evening and the number one topic was the ban on certain radio messages as from this weekend. “It won’t make a big difference to be honest,” began the Scuderia Ferrari driver. “I don’t think it will have a huge impact on the race itself, or preparations for the weekend. In any case, at Ferrari we have not used the radio for any performance related reasons. We tend to use it to control temperatures, to talk about traffic and strategy. I cannot say how it might affect other teams. As for the change in general, it has generated a lot of media attention, like the situation with FRIC, but in that case, we saw the final impact on the race was nothing special. I think it will be a similar case with this radio rule. It’s like if you’re a coach in football or basketball and cannot talk to your players; in the end it’s the player who shoots the ball. It won’t change our driving style and it’s not as though we won’t know how to drive the circuit.”

Rather than simply brush it away in his usual style, the Spaniard chose to question the motives behind yet another rumour about his future, this time that he and Vettel would swap teams! “It’s sad when these rumours are created in Italy,” he stated. “It’s a shame as it’s not helping Ferrari, which is the reason why we are all here and Ferrari is a much bigger brand than any one individual or even Formula 1 in general. I have a lot of respect for Ferrari and try and maintain a good atmosphere with the guys in the team, in order to have a very united team. It’s what we need and what the people expect from us. So it’s not clear to me what is the purpose of these rumours coming from Italy.”

Various factors relating to the Marina Bay circuit mean that fuel consumption could play a role on Sunday, however Alonso doesn’t feel it will be an issue. “It’s true fuel will be tight here and we will have to save a little bit extra, but it should be manageable, especially as the track layout allows you to save fuel quite easily compared to other circuits as you are generally safe from overtaking moves.”

And then came a final word on the big news since Monza, the departure of Luca di Montezemolo. “He was our leader for many years and it was a great time for Ferrari,” reckoned Fernando. “I wish him good luck with new projects and for the new President, I wish him good luck for hopefully a very successful future.”

via Scuderia Ferrari