Formula One: Quotes of Spain

Mike CassCorrespondent IMay 11, 2009

BARCELONA, SPAIN - MAY 08:  Rubens Barrichello of Brazil and Brawn GP is seen during practice for the Spanish Formula One Grand Prix at the Circuit de Catalunya on May 8, 2009 in Barcelona, Spain.  (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

Continuing my regular feature of selecting the best quotes of the race weekend, come the end of the season I'll pick my favourite 10.


Race Build-up


Piquet's poor performances so far this season has led to speculation about his future in F1, asked whether perhaps he needed "more of a cuddle and reassurance" from Renault, Piquet said, "I think that's also part of it. Obviously, there's a lot of people in the team who don't like doing cuddling.”


What I think Piquet meant to say was, “There's a lot of people in the team who I wouldn't want to cuddle.” Have you seen how sweaty Flavio Briatore gets?


Nico Rosberg feels that the weight regulations need to be changed, otherwise F1 will end up like ski jumping?


"I think it will be very important to try and get something into there (regulations) that loses this push to lose weight, lose weight, lose weight. It is like ski jumping in the end.”




Thursday's FIA Press Conference


Fernando Alonso managed to find some kind words to say about McLaren and Lewis Hamilton; the cynic in me thinks he did it in front of his Spanish fans to improve his own image.


"We had good competition that helped each other to find our limits, and I can say I miss that competition in a way because it was fun to push and find new limits for ourselves."


"The problems I had there (at McLaren) were with the big bosses and the philosophy of the team, which is why I decided to move on from that period of my career.”


"Lewis has always been a great driver, and he is a great Champion. He fought for the World Championship in his first season in Formula One, and won it in the second season.”


"So to help his reputation that is damaged now, that is very easy, just keep winning. He will make people, his supporters, happy.”


Jonathan Legard asked if the weight loss drivers have undergone this season to accommodate KERS has effected driver health, the drivers responded like anorexic models trying to one up each other.


“I'm on my lowest weight ever in Formula 1 and it's not a problem, no. The lighter drivers have an advantage now. I weigh 59 kilos.” said Nick Heidfeld.


Lewis Hamilton was obviously feeling a bit self concious, “59 kilos! I have a long way to go to get to that weight. I'm at 67 kilos but I've always been 67. I started the season quite a lot heavier, but that was just because I was eating really good.”


Alonso didn't want to give his weight away, but wanted everyone to know he was working out, “I don't think it's a problem. I feel, as I said, better than last year, especially when you take the bike. It's better this year. I don't think there are any safety issues.”


Giancarlo Fisichella got his point straight across, “I thought they were too fat last year!”


Marco Evangelisti of Corriere dello Sport asked the question, “Fernando, I don't want you to have any trouble with the fans here but what did you really feel yesterday evening when Iniesta scored?”


“Well, in the end I think there is a Spanish team in the final, so this is good news and I'm happy for Barcelona and for the fans. Obviously I'm a Real Madrid fan, so I think it was more painful last weekend when we lost in Madrid.” replied Alonso, who has now lost a few of his Spanish fans.


Paul Logothetis of the Associated Press asked, “Max Mosley said this week that he can imagine F1 without Ferrari in the future. Just wondering if you guys felt the same way?”


Lewis Hamilton, “I couldn't imagine it.”


Fernando Alonso, “No, impossible.”


Giancarlo Fisichella, “Without Ferrari, I don't think it would be Formula 1 any more.”



During Friday's FIA press conference, Ross Brawn said he is concerned about the prospect of a budget cap next year, and fears F1 is becoming too restrictive and boring, “ of the difficulties of Formula One is that we are turning into Swiss watchmakers.”


"We are just refining everything to the nth degree instead of being able to make conceptual or innovative changes, because the rules are becoming more and more constrictive.”


Talking after both Friday practice sessions, Lewis Hamilton said, "We're still a long way away and I didn't feel any improvement...unfortunately, the upgrades we tried didn't work for me, and the car doesn't feel like it's improved.”


McLaren team mate Heikki Kovalainen didn't quite feel the same as Hamilton, "I'm really happy with the progress we made. The new parts we have on the car obviously seem to work: I think we've improved the technical package since Bahrain."


Mark Webber hasn't lost any of his sarcasm on returning to Europe, "Another cliff hanging Friday, eh?”


Meanwhile team mate Sebastian Vettel is hearing things, "A pretty normal Friday except that at some stage we had a problem with the radio and I think I had some Spanish (taxi) drivers to talking to me!”


Maybe they were trying to chat up dirty Kate's sister!



After the race just before the podium celebration Barrichello said to Button, "I don't know how I lost this race."


Button replied, "I'm elated, but I feel for you." He was going onto say, “You should have driven faster!”, but Mark Webber turned up and declared, “Massa really fucked up Vettel.”


I bet the TV director loved that!


Button was also concerned about Massa, “I thought if he (Massa) gets in front of me then that's it, I'm screwed.”


After the race, Hamilton did the best job he could to to thank his mechanics and engineers for all the late nights they have been putting in, “What can I do? I have not been given a car that enables me to challenge. The car just has no grip. I am driving my socks off, but it's just that bad.”


Barrichello did an even better job of throwing his toys out the pram, "If I get a whiff of team orders, I will hang up my helmet on the spot."


"I'm very experienced and if that happens, I won't follow any team orders any more. I'm making it clear now so everybody knows."


Luckily, Barrichello insisted, "...There's no way I'm going to cry and say I should have done this or that."


"It was not that long ago people were putting flowers on my grave and saying thank you very much for the job I'd done. But I'm here, very much alive...”


I think Rubens needs to listen to what he is saying, he's right his F1 career was nearly over a few months back. But Brawn threw him a lifeline and now he is threatening to quit because he wasn't fast enough when he needed to be!


Webber was again on form and should be allowed to attend every press conference, as he is too good with the lingo.


Mark had this to say about his race, he wasn't trying to big himself up in any way, as you can tell, “Switching to the mega, mega long middle stint was a crucial part of the race for us, to be able to get a little bit closer to Rubens and also jump a few guys, so it was a challenge.”


“The car felt like it had a caravan on the back to start with, but we got through that and then you've just got to keep knocking the laps in, even though it doesn't feel that quick.”


Webber then added possibly his best quote of the season, “It's still quite tricky to follow cars in the quick stuff here.”


He wasn't done yet though, because he wanted to know where all the press where, “Ah, OK, well they can get their asses in here. It's only a two-minute walk, isn't it? Hi guys out there, wherever you are...”


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