Chinese Grand Prix Drivers' Conference

Chinese Grand Prix Drivers' Conference


DRIVERS – Sergio PÉREZ (Red Bull Racing), Oscar PIASTRI (McLaren), Logan SARGEANT (Williams), Valtteri BOTTAS (Kick Sauber), Lance STROLL (Aston Martin), Lewis HAMILTON (Mercedes)

 

Q: Logan, great to have you with us. It's your home race. Just tell us how excited are you? How busy are you? Has the past week been for you?
LOGAN SARGEANT: It's been busy. I obviously have three of these, which is nice, but this one's home. But they're always busy weekends leading up to the race. But it was nice. I got the full day off yesterday just to hang out with friends, family, get out on the boat for a little bit. So, yeah, I feel relaxed and excited to be racing at home for the first time in a while.


 
Q: A little bit more pressure performing at home?
LSa: I don't think so. I think, you know, every race in Formula 1 has a lot of pressure behind it. If anything, it just feels like more relaxed weekend, you know, staying at home, being able to eat whatever I want when I'm at home, have my friends, have my parents there. And, yeah, it just feels a little bit different, different to normal, but in a good way.


 
Q: And in terms of performance Do you think the circuit will play to the cars strengths?
LSa: Well, look, I mean it's been extremely tight from the bottom of the midfield to the back, but generally this track should definitely suit us better than China, which is a good step in the right direction. But, you know, we have our work cut out. It’s a Sprint weekend, which always makes it tough. We need to nail it right away, and hopefully if we do that a little bit better than others we can put ourselves in a good position. But that's how it is most weekends now. So we just need to try and execute a clean and good weekend best we can and hope that leaves us in a good spot.


 
Q: Alright. Good luck with that. Thank you, Logan. Checo, can we come to you next? You started this race on pole last year. Just how much confidence do you have coming into the weekend?
Sergio PÉREZ: I think the last few weekends have been good. I think the upgrade we introduced in Suzuka should perform better in these sort of places. It will be also quite interesting to see on a very different circuit to the ones we've been. We're still in the early stages of the season, so it will be interesting to see where we are relative to everyone else in this place. Last year, qualifying went all right, so I believe that we can be alright here.


 
Q: What about off track now, Checo? News broke this week that Adrian Newey is leaving Red Bull Racing. Can we start by getting your reaction to that news?
SP: Yeah, it's obviously, I would say, not ideal. Someone like Adrian has been tremendous to our team, to our organisation. And he's obviously a very good friend of mine as well in this time that we spent together. But at the end of the day, there are times in life… I think he spent like 20 years at Red Bull. I think he probably wants to do something else. And it's fair. I think Red Bull, it's in a great place. It has a very good, very strong organisation with Pierre, with Enrico, with Ben. I think the whole aero group is very strong and we're just looking forward to the future. I think you've seen in the past with these big teams, big names, when they leave they will always exist, it doesn't matter. It's not down to one single individual, it's a whole organisation and I think Christian has done a great job in sort of preparing for the next generation of what's going to happen to Red Bull.


 
Q: OK, thank you for that. Lewis, can I bring you in on this Adrian Newey news? He's a free agent this time next year. How much would you like to see him join you at Ferrari in 2025?
Lewis HAMILTON: Very much.


 
Q: What do you think he would bring to Ferrari?
LH: Well, I mean, Adrian's known for… He's got such a great history, track record. And, you know, he's obviously just done an amazing job through his career in engaging with teams and the knowledge that he has. And I think he would be an amazing addition. I think they've already got a great team. They're already making huge progress, strides forwards, their cars quicker this year. But yeah, it would be a privilege to work with him.


 
Q: And on a personal level, how excited would you be to work with a man of his experience?
LH: Very.


 
Q: Alright. Look, what about this weekend, Lewis? In China last time out, it was a weekend of extremes for you. Do you think you're going to find a little bit more consistency with the car this weekend?
LH: Yes. The team have been working hard. We’ve got an upgrade here, a small upgrade here this weekend. So excited to see developments coming through. And I think hopefully we’ll have a car in a bit of a better working window. So no doubt it will still be a challenge. But really excited to be here in the States. The weather is incredible. It's going to be a challenge for temperatures and tyre deg and all that sort of stuff. But, yeah, we welcome it.


 
Q: Good luck this weekend. Lance, just coming to you now. It was a good race for Aston Martin here last year. How confident are you coming into the weekend?
Lance STROLL: Yeah, I mean, I hope we can be stronger this weekend. You know, for sure, the teams ahead of us have been very strong the first part of the season. But yeah, I hope we can have a good result.


 
Q: And a quick one, just throwing it back to China. It was a controversial incident behind the safety car. Daniel Ricciardo in particular, not happy. Can you give us your take on what happened?
LSt: Yeah, I mean, you know, it's history now. I'm focused on this weekend. I don't really want to go too much into detail about it. It was unfortunate, for sure. You know, I was also trying to have a good race, and it was a very unfortunate ending to it, but just focused on Miami now.


 
Q: Have you spoken to Daniel?
LSt: Not for this room. Those things are done behind closed doors.
 

Q: Alright. Good luck this weekend. Thank you, Lance. Valtteri, coming to you now. First up, you have a new race engineer this weekend in Miami. What's the reason behind the change?
Valtteri BOTTAS: I think that's more a question for the team. Yeah, it was quite a sudden change. Obviously, it's a Sprint weekend, so working with a fresh guy will be not easy, but obviously trying to make the most out of it. But yeah, he's getting a lot of support. But yeah, it's quite a sudden change.

 
Q: Just to be clear, does this change have your blessing?
VB: I think it's part of the kind of reconstruction for the team. There's some people leaving, some people joining. And obviously, yeah, many of those decisions, they are not in my hands. And yeah, so I don't do those decisions.
 

Q: OK. And since we were in China, Nico Hülkenberg has been confirmed as one of Sauber's drivers for 2025. What was your reaction when you heard the news?
VB: Of course, the timing is quite early and a little bit surprising, but the driver market is starting to move, obviously, and it also kind of makes sense. He's German, and Audi has made it pretty clear that they want a German driver, so it's all good. Let's see what happens next.

 

Q: And what does happen next for you?
VB: I don't know. Obviously, speaking to multiple teams, some talks have advanced more than the others. So we'll see.
 

Q: OK, thank you. Good luck this weekend. Oscar, thank you for waiting. McLaren are running some updates this weekend. How excited are you by them?
Oscar PIASTRI: It should be a good step forward, hopefully. That's always what you want from updates on the car. Obviously on a Sprint weekend, it makes it a little bit more difficult to get the most out of them, because you've only got one practice session, but yeah it should hopefully be a decent step forward. I think last year we had some upgrades in Baku, which was the race before Miami, and then we had a shocker here last year. So we'll have to wait and see if this track kind of suits us, because last year we chopped and changed quite a bit. But yeah, hopefully it does what it's supposed to do and that would be good.
 

Q: What is it supposed to do? How big a jump do you think it'll be?
OP: I think it'll be a decent step forward. I think, you know, trying to stay on the trajectory from last year is what we're aiming to do. But, you know, obviously as you get closer and closer to the limit of these cars and these regs, it becomes harder and harder to do. So we'll see. But yeah, I think the upgrades we pulled off last year always worked well. So yeah, hopefully we can have a similar kind of effect this year.
 
QUESTIONS FROM THE FLOOR 
 
Q: (David Croft – Sky Sports F1) Lewis, let's come to you, if we may. When you sat down with John Elkann and he said ‘come and join Ferrari’, and persuaded you to come to Ferrari and said, ‘what would your wish list be?’ If he did say what would your wish list be. Was Adrian Newey part of that? Did you ever think that there would be that possibility? And sitting here now, what do you think the chances are that you could partner with Adrian Newey in the future?
LH: I mean, this is all private conversation stuff. So if I was to do a list of people that I'd love to work with, he would absolutely be at the top of that. 
 
Q: (David Croft – Sky Sports F1) What are the chances? 
LH: I mean, I don't know. We'll see.
 
Q: (Craig Slater – Sky Sports) Just picking up on that, Lewis. I mean, Adrian Newey’s pretty much, for all your career, been in the opponent category for you. Could you sum up maybe how tough an opponent he's been? And even if he doesn't join another team, do you think him leaving Red Bull changes the competitive landscape?
LH: Well, just from my perspective, when I joined McLaren, I think it was an evolution of his car. I think I got there just after he left. So that car had evolved from a concept that he had worked on. So I felt privileged that I'd had the chance to touch something that he had worked on. Racing against a team that he's been so heavily a part of through the years has been a massive challenge, but I think we just always need to remember that there's a lot of people in the background and there is not one key person that… It's not one person, it's a whole team of people who do the job. So you can imagine for all the amazing experience that he brings to the team, the people that he works with will continue to do an amazing job. And I don't anticipate Red Bull not continuing to build great cars moving forward. But any team would be fortunate to have the opportunity to work with him.
 
Q: (Roldán Rodriguez – DAZN Spain) A question to Lewis. Watching your records, that are amazing, I would love to know where you find your motivation. Where are you focused to?
LH: Thank you. Well, I think it's the idea that you can always improve. It's the idea that there's always something better or there's better days up ahead. I generally really love working with people and having that human interaction, the collaboration, the emotional roller coaster you go on with a group of people is quite extraordinary. And when you have the highs, you experience it all together. It's not just an individual sport. So it's those. And then I generally love what I do. I've loved it since I was a kid. It still remains a dream. I'm still very conscious of how fortunate I am to be here. There's only 20 of us that have a role here driving in this sport. And it is a real privilege for us. And I'm conscious of how hard my family worked for it. So I'm trying to make sure I do them proud always.
 
Q: ( Nelson Valkenburg – ViaPlay) Lance, Aston Martin has been connected to Adrian Newey as well. You know what your dad has in mind for the team. Can you share it with us? Is Adrian part of that story?
LSt: I guess time will tell. Lewis already said that one.
 
Q: (Tim Hauraney – TSN) A question for Sergio. You had said that Adrian was a close friend of yours. When did you find out that he wasn't happy with the team and when did you find out that he was going to be leaving the team?
SP: Well, obviously he’s a key part of our organisation, and there were some talks of it, and obviously once it gets public, it's much more in advance that there have been some talks of it. I think also Christian and the whole team has been preparing for one day… I mean, you're going to lose any single individual, you know, so it's a big organisation. And as long as he's a key player to our organisation, there is a massive team around him as well.
 
Q: (Albert Fabrega – ESPN LATAM) Question for you all. In China, the first Sprint weekend was run. Did you feel comfortable with the new format opening the Parc Fermé after the Sprint race? And do you think this is the format that should stay for the future?
VB: I have to say, actually, I probably preferred the old format myself, because there was only one practice and the qualifying straight after was for the main race. So there was a bit more at stake. And as well as with the set-up, you wouldn't have the second chance to adjust it. So I liked that a bit before what we had last year.
LS: We all agree. I think if I was just to add anything, I would just prefer having a Sprint quali and then having the GP quali the next morning. I don't think it's great having a Sprint race where you're much slower than a qualifying lap and then straight to quali.
OP: Yeah, I would say the same. I felt a little bit weird having the Sprint race, because it's obviously a race in itself, kind of, and then preparing again for qualifying kind of feels like the race should be, I guess, the end of the day. But I think opening up Parc Fermé was a good thing for the drivers and the engineers. I'm not sure the mechanics appreciated it that much, but I think to repeat some of the stuff that happened last year, you know, with like, Lewis and Charles getting disqualified, I think we don't want to see people getting disqualified because they set their ride heights a bit wrong and they can't change. I think that was a good step forward. But yeah, that's it.
SP: I think one big point from Oscar is about opening the Parc Fermé I think puts a lot of workload on the mechanics and I think it's something that we really have to look at it. It's 24 weekends a season and with these Sprint races I think it's a lot of load on our mechanics. So I think whether we look at it, change the format a bit to basically try to look after our people a little bit more as a sport, I think that's something really to look at it.
LSt: I agree.
 
Q: With what point?
LSt: With everything.
 
Q: Lewis? 
LH: I concur. 
 
Q: You both agree? With Valtteri? 
LH: With Lance.
 
Q: (Stephany Saad – BeIn Sports) I want to ask Oscar. So, your team principal has mentioned that McLaren can compete with Red Bull, next season of course. So in the latter half of last season, you did great, and the car improved, and the team, of course, performed impressively. But it's still so far from challenging Red Bull. So what do you think the car needs to consistently compete for podiums?
OP: I think for me, you know, the Red Bull is a very strong car in general. You know, it doesn't really seem to have a major weakness. It's just strong in all areas. So I think that's what we need to be able to do. I think we have some certain areas that are weaker for us than some of our competitors, which we're trying to address. I think we're getting closer and closer. I think at points last year we were very close at a couple of tracks. But, yeah, clearly we're not the well-rounded package that Red Bull is at the moment. So, I think we've still got some work to do, obviously. The upgrades this weekend are trying to help us with that. But, yeah, I think, you know, with the trajectory we've had, if you look at us 12 months ago, to where we are now I think we're in great shape and hopefully later this year and into next season we can start to start the challenge a bit more.
 
Q: (David Croft – Sky Sports F1) Sergio, this one for you. At Red Bull, there's been a lot of stories this year and what seems like a bit of internal infighting as well. Do you worry that the news of Adrian's departure this week will lead to more people departing the team and not just in the aero department, not just technical people, but your team-mate Max Verstappen as well?
SP: I don't think so. I think everyone is fully committed to the team. We're having a tremendous season once again. The future looks bright in the team, so I think it's normal that you have this sort of movement with some people. But I think the organisation remains really strong and I don't see any more changes in that regard.
 
Q: (Diego Mejia – Fox Sports Mexico) Question for Sergio. As you've said, it's been almost 20 years since the last time Adrian switched teams. With how much has Formula 1 changed over that time, how much of an instant impact would you expect him to have if he was to join a top team? 
SP: Well, definitely. Adrian, with the experience he has, obviously he has contributed a lot to the Red Bull philosophy. So, yeah, I assume he will cause an immediate impact wherever he goes, whatever he does. He's a very clever guy, very hard worker. And with Adrian, working with him, it's much more than a designer. He can influence even strategies, set-up. He could have that influence on a race weekend, you know? So to have him around on race weekends was great. And yeah, he's obviously a very strong individual guy that wherever he goes, he will cause immediate impact. But obviously, It's a whole group of people that he would require to have around him as well.
 
Q: (Nelson Valkenburg – ViaPlay) A question for Valtteri. Given your body language on the subject of the race engineer of Alex, what does it say about the organisation that clearly you were at least not happy with the situation, that the direct link between the car and the car's performance for you changes underneath of you?
VB: What was the actual question? 
 
Q: (Nelson Valkenburg – ViaPlay) So what does it say about the organisation as it is growing into the Audi organisation that this clearly has happened to you and you're not completely happy with it?
VB: I think it says that things are changing. You know, there's change happening. Obviously, some changes are for the long term. I don't obviously know all the reasons behind every decision that, like I said, is being made. But it just tells that, yeah, change is happening. People are leaving. People are coming in. That's about it.
 
Q: (Roldán Rodriguez – DAZN Spain) A question to Checo Pérez. You are doing a strong season this year. You are second in the World Driver's Championship. What else do you need to re-sign the contract with Red Bull? And why is it not done yet? 
SP: Well, I think like everyone that hasn't done a contract, that is not signed, until you don't have that in paper fully signed, then everything remains an option. So right now, it's not really the main priority. We are in a period of time, obviously the driver's market is making things to go a lot earlier, with Lewis joining Ferrari early in the year, it meant that everyone is looking for the best possible option they can get. But I believe it's just a matter of time. And, yeah, obviously right now the priority is on the season, it's on the races, it's preparing the races with the team and the race will take care of itself.
 
Q: (Tim Hauraney – TSN) Question for Lewis. Lewis, obviously you have your obligations with Mercedes, but off track, are you monitoring a lot what's going on with Ferrari and what they're doing? Are you in constant communication with the team?
LH: I mean, I continue to have a good relationship with John and Fred, so we speak regularly. But no, I'm not actually in touch with the team. And of course, I observe from afar, but the full focus is on how can we beat them right now. How can we win. So that's where all my energy is going.
 
Q: (Margot Lafitte – Canal+) Question for Lewis, but I would be delighted if other drivers want to answer. I don't know if we have enough time. Lewis, we're doing some footage on how to deal with celebrity. And I was wondering how it impacted your day-to-day life, your day-to-day activities. Recently, Kylian Mbappé said he was losing spontaneity in his life. Is that something you feel? Is that something that impacts you?
LH: No, I'm pretty spontaneous. I think it's an interesting journey. It's definitely not all you thought it would be. As a kid, when you see people on TV and you're like, ‘oh, it must be cool. This must happen and this must happen, having money, and all these different things’. But it's not all great. And I think over time you just learn how to handle it. And I think ultimately at some stage you realise that it's not really about you. It's a platform to do good, and so if you just have the right intentions then you can actually have a real positive impact and I think that's really what it's mostly for.
VB: Yeah, I definitely haven't lost my spontaneity as well, so not so much more to add to Lewis. It's a journey and some things are good, some maybe not what you thought as a kid. But I think the easiest way is to just be yourself and roll with it and try and enjoy the good and the positive things.
SP: I think it obviously has its hard bits, but there are also a lot of positives with it. You've achieved a lot of things that you wanted to achieve when you were a kid, but it comes with a huge responsibility. What I find difficult at times is that it can really apart you from going to places. I have a family and sometimes being with your family, you are not as comfortable as you used to be, because of the attention that you get when you are in different places. But it's all part of the journey, realising that we have, like Lewis said, a great platform to motivate younger generations to achieve their dreams. It's obviously like everything in life, you know, it comes with some bad things. But at the end of the day, we have to remember that we are very privileged to be able to be living our dreams.
 
Q: (Alex Kalinauckas – Autosport) Question to Lewis, please. The driver you're replacing next year at Ferrari, Carlos Sainz, I just wondered, what do you make of him as a driver, as a person, as a rival on track?
LH: I've got a lot of respect for Carlos. And I think it's been great to see his progress as a driver. I think he's been doing an amazing job, obviously this year particularly. And yeah, I just continue to see the great bond he has with his dad, which I can relate to. And I mean, from an outside space, he seems like a very straightforward person, quite funny. Yeah, that's as far as it goes in terms of how much I know him.
 
Q: (Samuel Pancher – Metropoles) This week, we remember 30 years since the loss of the great Ayrton Senna. I'd like to hear from the drivers how this figure still inspires you, especially those who has this strong connection with Brazil? 
LH: I mean, I think it's a difficult one. I've said so much about Ayrton, so I don't really have any more to say other than that he remains in all of our hearts and within the sport and is still such a role model. And his family, I think, is doing a great job with the foundation, still helping kids. But yeah, there's nothing else I can really say that I haven't already said.
LSt: Yeah, I mean, he's a legend of the sport and someone that changed the sport in many ways. He was a legend on the track and also off the track. He had a voice. He helped Brazil in so many ways and really, I think, took the sport to another level in so many ways. And even from a driver's side of things, I think really evolved, you know, the work ethic and, how to be at another level as a driver. So, yeah, he’s truly, definitely an incredible legend of the sport.
VB: Very much on the same lines with Lewis and Lance. And I don't think it matters how many years goes on. The legacy will always live and he'll always be a legend and never forgotten.
LSa: Yeah, I think similar to what the other drivers have said. And I think another thing just being that he holds a special place in not only most of us drivers, but the team's heart as well from the history he has with them.
OP: Yeah, I mean, very much along the same lines. I think obviously he’s spent a great deal of his career at McLaren. So I think for us, it's very, very special to have that legacy going on. For me, I was obviously not born when he was racing, but reading through the stories, watching the documentaries, seeing some of the videos of his qualifying laps, stuff like that, it's very inspirational. Yeah, I think it's great that we're still celebrating him. And I think, like Valtteri said, I don't think it matters if it's 30 years, 50 years, 150 years. I think the legacy will still be there. And yeah, I think it's very special for us all.
SP: Yeah, I think we all follow the sport. And for all of us, it's super special to have had a figure like him. He was a tremendous racing driver, very brave. But what I admire the most is how he behaved out of the car, what he did for his country, for the kids, for the younger generations. I think that's the one thing that I really get inspired by Ayrton. And yeah, I think it's great that the family keeps doing a great job with their foundation and like Ayrton did when he was driving in Formula 1. So yeah, I think he's a great human being and this is why his legacy is so big in our sport.
 
Q: (Francisco Torres –  El Gráfico) One question to Checo. I saw the design of your helmet and all the flags of Latin American countries. What can you tell for you to decide to have a representative from Latin America? 
SP: Well, I think it's a massive pleasure and pride to be able to represent all the Latin countries. Obviously, here in Miami, I get a lot of support, not just from the Mexican side, just the whole Latin community. And it's something that makes me extremely proud. Really hard as a Latin driver to be in this sport. So I really want them to feel the pride and hopefully this helmet can represent something that I feel on them.
 
Q: (Safid Deen – USA Today) For Lewis, how have you dealt with the awkwardness of this year, answering about your future team maybe more than your present team, telling fans Mercedes caps, not Ferrari caps, and even the awkwardness of today with Newey? How have you dealt with all of this? And it's going to be a long year, too, for the rest of this year. How do you cope with that?
LH: I've never been in this situation before, so it's a unique scenario. On one side, I'm really excited for turning up and working with my guys, and then I'm excited for the future at the same time. And also, just in terms of how fans have responded, it's been great, because I'm kind of mingling with fans from both teams. But, you know, right now my heart's still with Mercedes and I really want to continue to deliver and lift them up. That's not only my job, but my desire this year. And as difficult as it's been, we still rally together and I’m really proud of everyone that I'm working with. And I'm really hoping that the year gets better. I don't want to say it can't get worse, but I definitely think we will improve.
 
Q: (Phil Duncan – PA) Good timing, Lewis with the previous question. You're obviously moving to Ferrari with the hope of capturing the record eighth world title. Does the prospect of Adrian joining you, does that give you renewed hope or greater hope I guess that you can turn that dream into reality? 
LH: Right now nothing changes because nothing's like… I don't know what's happening in the future. All I know is that I'm joining a team that's massively enthusiastic and driven, and as I said, doing a great job now and have amazing history and there's nothing really changed so far. 
 
Q: (Tom Carey – The Daily Telegraph) Lewis, just on Adrian again, you said any team would be fortunate to work with him. Do you expect that Mercedes will try, or should they try, given the troubles they've had the last few years, do you think Adrian might be exactly what they need?
LH: I have no idea if they are trying. I don't know who is trying. I can't tell you. 
 
Q: (Jordan Bianchi – The Athletic) This is the first race here in Miami since the Las Vegas Grand Prix, and I'm curious if you guys, anyone up there has seen anything different with the atmosphere diminished in any way with the addition of the Las Vegas Grand Prix?
LSt: Diminished? No, I think the sport's got bigger here. It's got a lot more awareness. Every city that I go to, people are excited. It's now a sport here in the States. Before, it was just an event that arrived once a year. Now, we're kind of a part of the culture here, which is really, really cool. It's been amazing, and I think all of us are super grateful for the US finally embracing this sport and having the love and passion for it that we all have grown up with.
LSa: I think Lewis answered it well. I mean, it's definitely not diminished at all, and I'm sure this weekend, as always, is going to be a fun one. So, no, definitely not.
VB: I mean, this weekend will show, but I doubt anything has lost anything, that it wouldn't be special. I think it's still going to be a great event and everything is being covered, I agree.
 
Q: (Ronald Vording – Motorsport.com) It's a question to all of you, starting with Logan and with Lance, please, because you were affected in China. Logan, you got two penalty points on your license for what seemed a minor incident with Nico Hülkenberg, with you staying ahead. Do you guys feel that the penalty points are given too easily nowadays and that something needs changing, also with the risk of a ban at the end if you get up to 12? Or do you feel the system is OK as it is? 
LSa: It's a great question. I think mine was extremely frustrating. I think the penalty is one thing. I think to get penalty points for what it was, was a bit of a joke. I think a lot worse things happen throughout the weekend that you just get reprimanded for. I've had people in qualifying slow down in front of me, nearly have huge crashes, and nothing happens. But then when I cross the line at the same time as someone else and you can't even see it, you get two penalty points. And I think it's not a great direction to be heading in.
LSt: Yeah, I mean, it is what it is. Penalty points aren't going away.
SP: I'm leading the championship currently on the penalty points! I think that already the penalties, sometimes you already pay the consequences for that and to add some penalty points, and given that we have now more races, I think it's something that definitely should be looked at. Every incident if you see of all the points that every driver gets, there are a lot of points that are probably over the line, but the rule is there. But hopefully in the future it's something that can be reviewed.
 
Q: (Rosanna Tennant – BBC Radio 5 Live) A question for Lewis. During your negotiations with Ferrari, was Adrian Newey ever mentioned? Was his name ever discussed? Or is it only since the Christian Horner allegations that he's become a real possibility?
LH: I can't tell you. I can't tell you what was in the discussions.
 
Q: (Dan Lawrence – Motorsport Monday) We only have six Sprints in a year and they're normally quite spread out in the 24-race calendar, but the first two Sprints of the year are back-to-back. How do you feel about having two Sprint weekends back-to-back? Is it a positive or a negative for you and the teams?
SP: Like I said before, I think it puts a lot of workload on our mechanics. With the current format as it is, definitely I've seen some of my boys and it's definitely a lot of workload to be able to change the car right after the Sprint event, before qualifying, it just puts a lot of workload. I would really like that we will be able to review the format because so we are looking after our people in our sport.
OP: I think for me, having two in a row doesn't really make much difference. Yeah. For me, it's very much the same. You attack the weekend in a similar way. So yeah, for me, it's not a big difference if they're together or not. I think some circuits are better for Sprints than others. But yeah, having two in a row for me makes no difference.
LSa: I would just prefer 24 normal weekends. Leave it at that.
VB: No, it doesn't make a difference when they are. I think it's in the end, it's six in a year anyway. So yeah, it doesn't make a difference.
LSt: Two-day events would be nice, because we have so many race weekends now. So many Thursdays. You know, like practice, three hours on a Saturday morning, qualify Saturday afternoon, race Sunday. 
LH: I agree.
 
Q: (Doug Markowitz – Miami New Times) How have you guys all enjoyed being in Miami so far? And how do you plan on spending your time here before or after the race?
LH: I got here two days ago and I love being here. I get to go on the water and the weather, as I said, is great. I came from New York which was beautiful weather on one day but then raining the next day, so it's nice to have that consistent sun and just in general met so many people and they're all excited for the weekend which is good.
LSt: Yeah, I got here Monday and I've been enjoying the sunshine and the beach and might hang out a bit after the race, so it's good.
VB: It's been great. Yeah, so again, some new places I haven't seen in the previous years, so it's good to come here and explore a bit more.
LSa: Yeah, being home with family and friends, it's been great so far.
OP: Yeah, for me, seeing a little bit of Miami, but yeah, nothing more to add really.
SP: For me, it's great. It's really close to home, so I get to spend a little bit back home. It's a two-hour flight, so a lot of friends also here every year. I used to come two or three times a year to Miami, so now having the race, it's really nice. I get to see some of my friends that are living here. It's a city that I enjoy a lot, being here.
 
Q: (Jenna Fryer – Associated Press) Lewis, Angela Cullen has recently resurfaced in the IndyCar garage. She's working with a second-year Kiwi, a skinny little kid. She's put some weight on him, some muscle on him. His performance has picked up on track. He's doing much better than he did last year. I'm just wondering, why do you think Ang wants to be back in that scenario? What drives her and wants to work with drivers?
LH: I think she's a healer. She's a positive person. Her purpose is to bring love to everyone that she meets, which she does. And she's passionate about sports. And I think she's really enjoying it. a different environment, but still racing. And I think from her time here, she became such a passionate racing fan. And so I think once you catch the bug, it's hard to get out of it. And why should she? She belongs in the sport. And yeah, she's definitely very, very happy right now.


Related Motorsport Articles

84,675 articles