The Ferrari drivers talk about Mexico's new track

Kimi impressed with the new track facility

“It’s nice to come to a new place, I had been here before but not to Mexico City. I haven’t seen a lot apart from the hotel and the track, but so far everything looks nice and perfect, they have done a very good job here. I’m sure there will be a lot of fans, it is going to be a nice weekend. It will be challenging and unknown for everybody, since it’s a new place and we are at high altitude. This will influence a lot of things, the behavior of the car and of the engine in the first place. Let’s see how it is once we get running, and hopefully we’ll find out that it will be fine for us.”

 

Seb looks forward to Mexican challenge

“I’m very excited, obviously I haven’t been on track yet, I only did the normal simulator preparation, but the track looks very interesting. Especially the fact that the altitude here plays a big role: looking at the downforce level of the cars and the drag levels, it should be an interesting experience. I think we have a great atmosphere in the team, in general we are in a good way this season. We probably surprised a lot of people and we exceeded our expectations as well, so it was all in all positive so far. Unfortunately, the first place is out of reach, and second is better than third, then we try to go for second! I don’t consider myself the underdog, I know that we are not the favorite, but I think that from the beginning of the season we have shown that we’re not somewhere in the midfield. If we get our act together, then we have good chance to finish on the podium on a regular basis. I think that is what we’ve achieved so far. I think overall this season has been different from last year. Obviously it was a completely new situation for me, to start with a new team: joining Ferrari has been a great experience so far, but we also know where we want to go and where we want to be in the future. So there’s still a lot of work ahead of us and certainly we would be happier if people wouldn’t call us the underdog, but the favorite in the future…I haven’t been on the old track so I can’t compare it with the new one, but I think it looks very exciting. Unfortunately, I think we lost some of the really high speed corners, but I believe it should still be an interesting circuit, quite technical in places, but we haven’t been out there yet so I guess we need to wait until tomorrow. In general I think we have done a great job this year on the Power Unit side, obviously there’s a long straight here and that should put a premium on the engine side.”

Esteban: “Demanding for man and machine”

“This is definitely a very busy weekend for Esteban Gutierrez, Scuderia Ferrari’s third driver. “Having a home race is a great feeling,” the Mexican admitted to ferrari.com. “I don’t really know what to expect, but I am sure it will be incredible. Being the third driver means I get to take part in this amazing event with a different perspective, experiencing it from behind the scenes. It’s an honour to host the world of Formula One in our country and I’m curious to see what Mexicans will feel about this very special weekend. A unique aspect of this track compared to all the others is its altitude: everyone thinks about the effects this can have on the cars, but let’s not underestimate its physical impact on the drivers and the team members. As for the car, you can partly assess these conditions in the simulator, while the guys will need to be well prepared physically so they can adapt quickly to the different ambient conditions. Racing for the first time on a new track is always an exciting experience for a driver, but in the case of Scuderia Ferrari’s third driver, Esteban Gutierrez, Mexico represents something special. 

This is my country, I was born here and I love this place,” he tells ferrari.com. “I’m very proud of being Mexican and of the fact my country is hosting such an important event, part of a sport which is also my passion. For me this is the best possible combination. The circuit is very technical and I’ve been driving it on the simulator, because as usual with a new track, that’s essential in order to understand how best to tackle it over the weekend. “The three sectors are very different from each other but very technical at the same time. It means drivers who work out the best line will be the first to set quick lap times. I don’t expect it to be very hot, so even getting the tyres up to temperature will not be easy. Only once the cars are out on track will we understand how suited is our car to these various characteristics. As usual, track conditions will improve bit by bit as the cars do more running which will see the lap times gradually come down. It will also be interesting to see how the drivers adapt to this circuit, because they will want to do so as quickly as possible”.

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