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Interview with Sebastian Vettel in Sochi 23 Apr 2013

Formula One Triple World Champion Sebastian Vettel of Germany becomes the first driver to sample the new  venue at Sochi Olympic Park on 22 April 2013 in Sochi, Russia. Here with, left to right, Andreas Sigl, Global Director Infiniti F1, David Coulthard, Infiniti Red Bull Racing ambassador, and Nikolay Buturlakin, Vice Governor Krasnodar Region Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Bahrain Grand Prix, Practice, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Friday, 19 April 2013 An artist's impression of Russia's new track in Sochi

Red Bull’s triple world champion Sebastian Vettel was in Russia on Monday to visit the new Sochi Olympic Park Circuit, which hopes to host a Russian round on the 2014 FIA Formula One World Championship calendar. Whilst there Vettel shared his thoughts on the circuit and spoke about the prospect of racing in Russia...

Q: Sebastian, what potential does the Sochi track have from a driver’s perspective?
Sebastian Vettel:
I would say a massive one. Of course I can only judge it after I have been driving it - but from what I see I expect it to be massive. The venue looks just incredible. The Olympic Park - and the circuit right in the middle - that is unique in the world so it will be something very special to be part of the first Russian Grand Prix.

Q: As you said, it is a track that is incorporated into the Olympic Village. Do you think that this can become some sort of role model for future tracks?
First of all: the track here definitely stands out with all those impressive buildings and stadiums around - how far it can be a role model I am not able to answer. One thing I can say: in the past years we have seen some new tracks that are pretty much away from a city - and the Sochi track is right in the middle. That could give a hint for future developments. The people will return to this place after the Olympics and after a Formula One race because it is an area obviously with a huge recreational value with the Black Sea in front and the mountains behind with impressive ski resorts.

Q: Will you attend the Sochi Olympic Games next year to have another glimpse at the track and to follow some of the competitions?
That will depend on my schedule, but as I have never been to an Olympic Games - neither the summer nor the winter version - maybe I will.

Q: Is it about time that Russia gets a Formula One race?
I think so. If you consider the sheer size of the country and the importance of Russia on a global scale, then it’s a bit of a surprise that we haven’t had a Russian Grand Prix before Sochi 2014.

Q: Have you already had a taste of Russian F1 fans? You and the Red Bull team are the first to come to Sochi…
Ah, it’s nice to be the first in almost anything! (laughs) Well, look at the numbers that are following us around the globe. Russian fans are increasingly a part of the international fan community and it will jump up even more significantly once we have been racing in Sochi. When we arrived at the airport and were talking to some fans who came to greet us it was interesting to see that they all knew so much about Formula One - that they are real experts! (laughs)

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