Q: Kimi, what a fantastic job, your second pole here in Monaco but perhaps more importantly, you first pole since France 2008, which is 128 races ago – it established a new record for the gap between pole position. Clearly there’s plenty of life still within you yet. How excited are you to be starting on pole in Monaco, and where did it come from today, this performance?
KIMI RÄIKKÖNEN: Obviously it’s the best place to start for tomorrow, but it doesn’t guarantee anything for tomorrow. Nevertheless I’ll happily take it. It’s been all weekend quite OK. We’ve been struggling a little bit in certain places and we’ve been working and trying to figure it out and in qualifying it was better, by no means perfect, but it’s never going to be perfect. It was good enough and I was very happy with the car in there. If you look you can always go a bit faster here and there but that’s normal, it’s a never-ending story like that. We had a good timing when we went out. I felt good, so I was able to push and it was quite a nice straightforward qualifying. So happy for myself, happy for the team. Obviously we have two cars in the front tomorrow so let’s try to make the best out of it.
Q: (Pete Farkas – Auto Motor) It was quite interesting to see that during free practices Sebastian seemed to be a bit more confident on track than Kimi, but throughout qualifying it was the other way round. Has something changed – maybe it was because of the conditions, maybe the very high track temperatures – or maybe it was nothing in particular?
KR: No, I don’t think so. I think it’s the very fine details that make a difference here. If you have just a little bit of an off feeling with the tyres or something like that in one place, it limits you to go fast and obviously in those low-speed corners you can lose a lot of time for basically nothing. It’s tricky to put the good laps together. You try to kind of, in the practice, take it a bit easier, not to destroy the car, because then you are going to lose a lot. Then you push and hopefully you get it right. But I think it’s such small differences. It’s nothing to do with conditions or anything else, it’s just whoever gets the best feeling and being able to push.
Q: (Peter Farkas – Auto Motor) A question to both Kimi and Sebastian, it was quite interesting to see that, during free practices, Sebastian seemed to be a bit more confident on track than Kimi and in Q3 and throughout qualifying it was the other way around. Has something changed? Maybe it was because of the conditions, the very high track temperature – or it was nothing in particular?
KR: No, I don’t think so. It’s very fine details that make a difference in here. If you have a little bit of off feeling with the tyres in one place it limits you to go fast, and obviously in low-speed corners you can lose a lot of time for, basically, nothing. It’s tricky to put the good laps together. You can try in practice to take it a bit easy, not to destroy the car because then you’re going to lose a lot and then you push and hopefully get it right. But I think it’s such a small difference it’s nothing to do with conditions or anything else. It’s just whoever gets the best feeling and being able to push them.
SV: I think I had clear sessions Thursday and this morning, with no traffic, so I was able to feel the car and get the most out of it – I think Kimi had a bit scrappy runs with some traffic and couldn’t get maybe the same rhythm. So, it was close. As Kimi said, it’s about putting the lap together. Maybe I struggled a bit more in quali than him – but at the end of the day he was faster so he’s ahead. Simple.
Q: (Louis Dekker – nos.nl) Can you say if the circuit, with these new cars, is easier or more difficult?
KR: I don’t think it’s any easier. We end up going faster but then the same difficulties are there to go fast. It’s always tricky here, like it is in any place, especially here because you have to get very close to the kerbs and the walls and everything and there’s no chance to make mistakes. I think the resurface has improved a lot the circuit. It’s less bumpy, so it makes it a bit more nicer – but I don’t feel it’s any easier because the cars are faster and how more downforce. Everything happens a bit faster.
Q: (Livio Oricchio – GloboEsporte.com) To Kimi. Kimi in spite of being the sixth round of the Championship there is an important difference in points between you and Sebastian. In the case you and Sebastian are fighting the first bend after the start, how will you react?
KR: No different to any other point this year, last year. We know what we are doing, we are racing for the team and y’know, we have certain rules and respect against each other. We are allowed to fight but obviously, we have to do it as clean as we can and not take each other out.
Q: (Luigi Perna – La Gazzetta dello Sport) Kimi, this pole position, during the last nine years, it’s important for you to have done it in such a selective track as Monte Carlo?
KR: No, I would have happily taken any other place also but it just happens. We’ve been close a few times lately but it’s something we haven’t really got in the last race. But if you take any circuit, here it’s the most important to be in front but it doesn’t automatically give you a win or a good result. There are so many things that can happen in a race that are nothing to do with you. You might be doing and the team might be doing a perfect job but actually there are absolutely other things which might destroy the whole race so it’s going to be a long difficult race but we have two cars in the best possible positions so that’s the main thing.