Q & A with Mario Theissen

BMW introduced a host of upgrades for the Turkish Grand Prix - and the developments appeared to pay off as Robert Kubica finally opened his points account for 2009

Q & A with Mario Theissen

It is all still a far cry from the title-contending excitement of 12 months ago, but is a step in the right direction, as team boss Mario Theissen acknowledged afterwards.

Q. Are you happy to be back in the points?

Mario Theissen: Yes. Especially for Robert. It was about time for him to get his first points. I was satisfied with the qualifying performance, maybe not with the positions but with the lap times, and it was not really good enough in the first two stints - only after lap 40 did both cars come down in lap time to what we expected. So that is something that we have to investigate, but Robert showed a very solid race, two hard fought points on our own merit and this indicates the step has worked and so we can build on that.

Q. Do you feel you have got yourself in the regrouping situation to move forward?

MT: Yes. It is about the sheer performance of the car, but also the motivation and the confidence of the driver and the team to take the next steps then.

Q. This circuit is similar to Silverstone. Can we expect something similar there?

MT: I think what we have seen here is a solid step forward so it should work as well at Silverstone.

Q. The grandstands were pretty empty here, what do you think about that?

MT: Well, I didn't have much time to look at the grandstands today. It was quite an exciting race and always close for our drivers. I think Istanbul is a fantastic place, it is a great track and it is a shame that we have so few viewers here.

Q. There are suggestions that the ticket prices are just way, way too high here?

MT: I don't know about the circumstances, I don't even know about the ticket prices. But it should be one of the top events and apparently we should have much more spectators here.

Q. Would having KERS on the car here have brought a theoretical lap time advantage?

MT: I can't tell you because what we can quantify is the lap time advantage that you get on the straight. What we cannot quantify is the difficulties that you experience on Friday trying to put all the things together.

Q. What about Silverstone? Will KERS definitely be back there?

MT: Not definitely. We will discuss it now next week, and then decide.

Q. There are suggestions the teams are looking at banning KERS next year. Where does BMW stand on that?

MT: Very simple. We have voted in favour of KERS but as all the other FOTA decisions so far we will go with the majority.

Q. The teams met with the drivers on Sunday morning and showed their support for your stance. Was that encouraging?

MT: Well, in fact the drivers asked us to give them an overview of the situation from our perspective and that is what we did this morning. It was good to have this meeting and maybe we do it every Sunday morning - we have breakfast together, all the team principals and the drivers!

Q. What is your mood heading into this week - it is an important week for the sport?

MT: I think it is an important week but I also think that it will take more than one week to resolve everything.

Q. So what do you think will happen on Friday?

MT: Wait and see. I am not good at speculating - especially as this situation is really difficult.

Q. There were wild rumours on race morning about an eight team boycott of the Turkish Grand Prix...

MT: Yeah, unfortunately it did not get through to us, so we didn't know about it.

Q. Can you confirm that it was not discussed in the meeting?

MT: Yes. It was not talked about at all.

Q. A wild rumour...

MT: Yes, we just decided to race one hour later, but that was known to you as well.

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