Formula One: German Grand Prix - Preview.
Lewis Hamilton: “Winning at Silverstone was just an incredible feeling – for myself, the team and the fans, I couldn’t have asked for more. I feel like I’ve been on the back foot all year, only briefly leading the Championship despite taking the wins I’ve had, so to have got myself just about level was exactly what I needed. It’s almost a fresh start heading into the second half of the season and it’s going to be a really close battle between us. Of course, you never want to see your team-mate fall away, but hopefully we can now strike a line under the retirements and push each other all the way on track. You can’t have everything – the best car, the best pace, the best speed at the end of the straight and perfect reliability – because things are on the limit. There were lots of positives to take from Silverstone. Knowing I’m going into the next race with the best
car, having shown that I’ve got good pace, and knowing that if I do a good job I can be ahead is a good place to be. This is the home Grand Prix for Mercedes-Benz, so it’s important for the team and important for me. I’ve won twice before in Germany, but not at Hockenheim since way back in 2008. The aim is to change that this weekend.”
Pushing the boundaries.
Nico Rosberg: “Although it wasn’t the result I wanted in the end, my weekend in Silverstone was really encouraging in a lot of ways. As a team we made all the right calls in a difficult qualifying session and the balance of the car felt very strong until unfortunately I was forced to retire. It was a real shame, but with the new regulations we are always going to be pushing the boundaries and I know how hard the team is pushing to give us the best car out there every weekend. I lost a lot of points and the Championship battle is very close, but I’m feeling good. From the test last week we’re straight into the next race and another chance to regain the momentum, which is of course my target. Hockenheim is a crucial race for all of us. It’s the home Grand Prix for Mercedes-Benz and a second home race for me after Monaco, so I’m really focused on getting a top result this weekend. It’s actually the circuit I’ve won the most races at during my career through all the junior categories, so I know it suits my driving style. Of course, I would love to add Formula One to that list sometime soon!”
Toto Wolff, Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport: “We left Silverstone with mixed emotions after something of a rollercoaster weekend. Lewis produced a fantastic performance on Sunday – proving his strength by recovering from the disappointment of qualifying to take a brilliant and highly popular home win. For Nico, a strong weekend unfortunately did not yield the result he deserved and we have been working flat out since the race to find and resolve the problem. We can see the performance in the car, but bulletproof reliability is equally important if we are to maintain our advantage in the Championship through to the end of the season. Overall, however, Silverstone provided a memorable weekend for the team – and produced another strong advertisement for this new era of Formula One. Now we head to Germany and the home race of Mercedes-Benz with the Championship battle as close as it has been between our two drivers.
This is an important weekend for them and equally so for the team, so we will be pushing harder than ever to make sure both cars take the best results. The next chapter in this fascinating contest awaits us and we are determined to put on a strong show.”
Paddy Lowe, Executive Director (Technical): “Silverstone saw a fantastic win for Lewis on the occasion not only of the 50th British Grand Prix, but also the 60th anniversary of the first Formula One victory for Mercedes-Benz. While this brought cause for celebration, the main priority of the days since has been to understand the gearbox problem we saw with Nico’s car and to make sure there is no recurrence moving forwards. As with any such scenario, a lot of work has been put into rectifying the issue and we head to Hockenheim with a remedy in place. We will also be bringing a number of other upgrades evaluated during the Silverstone test last week, so we look forward to the next race in the hopes of both improved performance and a more robust package from a reliability perspective. It’s a good circuit and one at which we expect our car to be strong, but as always performance will be dependent on getting the car set up correctly from the outset and understanding the tyres – which are unusually soft for this race in terms of compound selection.”