Q & A with Mario Theissen
|By Edd Straw||Friday, July 24th 2009, 09:25 GMT|
Q. What are your expectations for this weekend?
Mario Theissen: I hope that we can stronger than before. We have had severe problems to get the tyres to work in all conditions, but that shouldn't be the case here so that should help us. Then we have slight aero improvements - a front wing. I hope that we can strong.
Q. Have you got the developments in the pipeline to make a big step in the next few races?
MT: We hadn't planned anything for this race. The next significant step will be for Valencia. What we have brought here is a step in between which has been added to the programme.
Q. When do you start looking more to 2010 than to this season?
MT: The developments feeds in to 2010. It's a very different situation then what we had last year. Next year's monocoque will be longer, but other than that there is no fundamental difference. We will carry on with F1.09 for three reasons. One: the regulations don't change so what we learn can be transferred to next year. Number two: we have the test ban so the only chance to try something out is the race weekend. Number three: we need to understand where we are and how to close the gap to the front, otherwise we cannot be confident about next year's concept.
Q. Do you understand the problem with this year's car?
MT: We think we have understood it, but it will take some upgrades that cannot come immediately to prove that. We will have one step in Valencia and then the final and most important one for Singapore.
Q. How close are you to signing the agreement for cost reduction?
MT: The cost reduction agreement is close. I'm really optimistic at the moment. I've been pessimistic in the past about both cost reduction and the Concorde Agreement but now it looks like we can do it within a few days. The Concorde and cost reduction agreement should be part of the whole deal. The new teams have been included and obviously there are some discussions over the details, but I see a chance of getting it done by next week.
Q. What has changed to make you so much more confident?
MT: Because step by step all of the open issues are being resolved. It's a real tripartite discussion and it will become a tripartite agreement between the FIA, FOA and the teams. That was not clear until maybe six or eight weeks ago.
Q. Nico Rosberg says he has various possibilities for next year and that BMW is one of them – what do you think of him?
MT: I don't want to make any comment on the driver line-up. The problem is not the drivers, it's the car, so I want to focus on the car.
Q. How do you see the championship shaping up?
MT: It's absolutely open – nothing is decided. When people said after six races that it's a one-two for Brawn, that was over-optimistic, especially this season. We have seen a lot of changes at the top already, cars that were competitive immediately fell by the wayside. I expect a lot of things to happen in the second half of the season and to me it is completely open between Red Bull and Brawn. There are some teams closing in in terms of car performance, but there's quite a big gap in the points.
Q. Could those other teams challenge for wins?
MT: Why not? We have seen things change from one race to another and I hope we will see that on our car as well.