The 2016 Formula One World Championship season continues this weekend with Round 15, the Singapore Grand Prix, from the Marina Bay Street Circuit. Daimler / Mercedes Benz provides the following information:
Lewis: “I love a battle, so I’m excited to see how it plays out”
Nico: “My belief in myself is as high as ever”
Toto: “We have to optimise everything to get a solid result in Singapore”
Paddy: “We love a challenge and are looking forward to it”
Monza didn’t quite go to plan. But when you look at how far we’v e come as a team this season, from the position we were in, then I realise I’m in a phenomenal position. We’re still leading both World Championships and there are still so many great things to achieve together, even before this season is through. Next up it’s Singapore, which is always a great event. The race is a challenge with the heat and humidity – but it’s a street circuit, which I love. We didn’t have the greatest weekend there last year, so hopefully we’re on top of that now. I guess we’ll find out in a few days’ time! Either way, it’s not going to be an easy breezy drive. Even when we won there back in 2014, it wasn’t straightforward. Ferrari and Red Bull will be on it I’m sure, so we’ve got a big fight on our hands if we are up at the front. I love a battle, so I’ m excited to see how it plays out.
Standing on top of that Monza podium was an awesome experience. I’ll definitely remember that one for a long time! But now my focus is on Singapore – a race that’s been up and down for me. I got my second ever podium there way back in 2008 but haven’t been up there again since, so the target is to change that on Sunday. Of course, it won’t be easy. This is a Red Bull track and we weren’t so strong there last year. But I have faith in the team and my belief in myself is as high as ever. I approach each weekend aiming to win the race. The points gap has gone up and down but I’ve taken it one race at a time – and that’s the best way for me, as you can see by how the gap is now. Singapore is a cool city and a great place for Formula One. The track looks spectacular under the lights and it’s always buzzing in town around the race weekend, so I’m really looking forward to getting out there.
Toto Wolff, Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport
After a strong showing in Italy, we go to Singapore with a big challenge ahead of us. No team has ever scored a 1-2 finish there – and with good reason. As we have seen before, it’s a race where a single problem can cascade into many more as the weekend progresses. We have to optimise everything to get a solid result. We didn’t manage it last year and, although we believe we now understand why, only performance on the racetrack can prove our conclusions right. We are curious and excited to see how it goes. Ferrari were mighty around this circuit last year and it will suit the high downforce design philosophy followed by Red Bull, so we must not make the mistake of thinking we are favourites this weekend. It’s an exciting time for the sport and the future is looking bright. For us, we now have to get the ball over the line in both Championships while remaining conscious that next year is a very different challenge. For the drivers, I think their battle will go to the end and our challenge is to ensure they both have the equal opportunity to fight in terms of equipment and operations. It’s going to be great to watch.Paddy Lowe, Executive Director (Technical)
Singapore is a unique race. With all sessions run at night under floodlights, everybody stays on European time throughout the weekend. This makes it a strange few days, getting up at lunch time in the local time zone and going to bed at breakfast. There seems to be a common feeling that there are more than 24 hours in the day when we’re in Singapore – but nobody is quite sure why! This was not a good race for us last year and a lot of work has been done during the intervening 12 months to understand why that was. It’s a matter of great interest for us as a team to see if we can come back and get it right this time around. Of course, we haven’t been able to test on the circuit, so all of our theories are just theories at this stage. We’ve got a lot more work ahead to get ourselves in a good position during practice, to qualify well and then to have a strong race. But we love a challenge and are looking forward to it. It’s an atmospheric venue with plenty of fans turning out, so we’re aiming to put on a good show and compete strongly.