Q: Nico, today it looked very promising for you; are you expecting a similar outcome here in Malaysia to what you had in Australia?
Nico Rosberg: It is not so easy to tell, as we have encountered unexpectedly high tyre degradation, which makes it a total different situation to Melbourne. We are already using the hard tyres and still have such high degradation, so this will be an essential point for the race: to manage your tyres right. The main reason for (the increase in tyre degradation) is the torque coming out of the corners, plus less downforce and the fact that we are sliding quite a bit more. Also we have the very high ambient temperature, combined with high humidity, which brings all cars to their limit and therefore it’s a big challenge also for the engineers to keep the cars cool.
Q: Who do you think will be your biggest competitor to watch for on Sunday?
NR: What I saw today is that Sebastian (Vettel) was doing extremely well in his last long run, so the Red Bulls seem to have come back quicker than everyone thought.
Q: Will the fuel management be an issue at this race?
NR: I don’t think that the fuel management will be a problem at this race, especially as this track is not on the limit. It will be more challenging to get the setup right for the race, considering that you have to find the right balance for the long runs and then also for qualifying.
Q: How close do you think it will be between you and your team mate, Lewis Hamilton?
NR: It will always be close with him, so I need to really try to stay ahead. Of course, it will be a challenge to try to set pole, as this obviously gives you an advantage for the whole race if you manage to stay in front. Both the team and us drivers are really focused, as we do not take anything for granted, and we’re trying to get the most out of the time that we have before the race.