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Nico Rosberg Q&A: It's another Mercedes-Red Bull fight 04 Oct 2013

Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W04.
Formula One World Championship, Rd14, Korean Grand Prix, Practice, Korea International Circuit, Yeongam, South Korea, Friday, 4 October 2013 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W04.
Formula One World Championship, Rd14, Korean Grand Prix, Practice, Korea International Circuit, Yeongam, South Korea, Friday, 4 October 2013 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W04.
Formula One World Championship, Rd14, Korean Grand Prix, Practice, Korea International Circuit, Yeongam, South Korea, Friday, 4 October 2013 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1.
Formula One World Championship, Rd14, Korean Grand Prix, Practice, Korea International Circuit, Yeongam, South Korea, Friday, 4 October 2013 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W04.
Formula One World Championship, Rd14, Korean Grand Prix, Practice, Korea International Circuit, Yeongam, South Korea, Friday, 4 October 2013 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W04.
Formula One World Championship, Rd14, Korean Grand Prix, Practice, Korea International Circuit, Yeongam, South Korea, Friday, 4 October 2013

After Red Bull’s dominance at the last round in Singapore, Mercedes are determined to fight back in Korea this weekend. And based on their Friday form in Yeongam, it seems the world champions really do have a battle on their hands. As team mate Lewis Hamilton led the way in Friday’s second practice, Nico Rosberg finished third and is confident the Silver Arrows can now challenge for victory on Sunday…

Q: Nico, how was it going today? Seems that the Mercedes is working pretty smoothly here?
Nico Rosberg:
Yes, it was a very good start into the weekend for us. We’ve been able to run all our programmes as planned. The track has a bit of a habit of eating the front tyres, as the wear is basically there - also due to the many corners. It is distinctively different for example to Singapore where the wear was basically on the rear tyres. So we have to adapt to this situation here.

Q: There are some modifications to the track for 2013. For example, the pit-lane exit. Is that better now?
NR:
Yes, it’s much better. It was not ideal in the previous years, so now it’s quite an enhancement.

Q: What about the pit-lane entry? It still looks a bit dangerous…
NR:
Yes, this is not without problems - especially if you are behind somebody who is heading for the pits and has to slow down in what normally is a full-throttle corner.

Q: Seems like Mercedes are the only team who can take on the Red Bulls. Is that your impression?
NR:
Yes, looks like another fight between us and Red Bull. Red Bull is pretty strong, but from what we’ve seen today there should be a chance for us.

Q: It was interesting to see that Red Bull were dominant in sector one, whereas you guys were faster in sectors two and three. Are they sandbagging - or playing with the downforce?
NR:
They’ve probably been on a different downforce level in sector one. If you bring down the downforce you are much quicker there, but lose out on the rest of the track.

Q: We’ve seen many cars spinning - especially in FP1. Was it really that difficult?
NR:
Yes, it was. Obviously this track is not in use much, so there was a lot of dirt on the tarmac.

Q: What’s your outlook for qualifying. Will Mercedes be able to go back to their summer performance?
NR:
Let’s hope so, even though I think that the Red Bulls do have an advantage. What is good to see is that we still can keep up with them - that our development speed is similar to theirs, even though much of our resources are already focused on 2014. But I guess that is the case with all the other teams as well. Our aim for the rest of the season is clearly to win races.

Q: You weren’t a fan of Sebastian Vettel’s notion that while others are relaxing by the pool he and his crew are still working to improve their car. Was that a slap in the face for all the other teams?
NR:
I commented that I consider that notion a bit off the hook, but let’s stop the matter there.

Q: You had dinner with Seb and the other drivers last night. Could you clear the situation?
NR:
I don’t want to discuss that matter any longer. It is history. I want to focus on the race - and on optimizing my car.

Q: So it is a podium finish that you’re aiming for on Sunday?
NR:
Victory. We want to win some more races this season. And from all we know, wins are always within reach.

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