Michael Schumacher optimistic of performance through 2012 F1 season: Mercedes AMG Petronas sums up Australian Grand Prix
Despite a number of disappointments, Michael Schumacher is positive of his performance during the new Formula One season. His performance at Sunday’s Australian Grand Prix saw him retire in the 13th lap due to gearbox problems, but yet the seven times champion is sure that he will perform better this season than he did in the last two seasons. Schumacher has 91 records to his name. He retired from Ferrari in 2006 but returned with Mercedes in 2010. Schumacher, 43 was in third place but faced problems with the gearbox and hence had to run into the grass.
Michael Schumacher had this to say, “It was an unfortunate end to my race when I lost drive going into turn one. I was trying different gears and occasionally the drive came back, but in the end, I had to go onto the grass to avoid the risk of the car being forced into a spin. It was especially unfortunate, as we have not had this problem during the winter tests and were very reliable. This is why I am not concerned, as I know things like this happen in racing, and our reliability is not in question. I believe I could have had a good race this afternoon and I can still take some positives out of the weekend, as we have seen our car was confirming our feelings, and is definitely a clear step forward. We can now build on that and start improving further.”
Nico Rosberg added, “I had a perfect start today and was able to gain three positions, however unfortunately we weren’t able to maintain that pace, and the race did not turn out as we had hoped. The end was particularly unfortunate with Perez when we touched on the straight, causing a puncture, which took away a points scoring finish. We have a lot of work to do to understand what went wrong, and how we can use the full potential which our car definitely shows. I’m still positive as Malaysia is a completely different track so I’m looking ahead to next weekend now.”
The final classification saw Jenson Button, Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton in top three positions. Team boss Ross Brawn reflecting on Schumacher’s performance said that it was better than being at the back. He said that they were not where they wanted to be but were working their way to the top as they were in a better position as they were a year ago. Brawn is sure that they will keep up the rate of progress and is optimistic of the team’s future.
Ross Brawn went on to say, “After a very encouraging weekend, today was not a good result for us. Despite excellent starts, both Michael and Nico had difficulties from the start of the race with their tyres. With the development of the circuit and the track temperatures, we fell out of the working window, and struggled with degradation. However we remain positive as both here and over the winter tests, we have demonstrated that we have a fundamentally quick car and we have a lot to build on. So we need to look at what happened today, unravel the problem and work out where we need to improve.”
Norbert Haug added, “Michael was defending third place when his gearbox had a problem which caused his retirement. Nico did not have the necessary speed due to problems in the tyre usage, the reason for which we are currently investigating. The collision on the last lap cost Nico points but more concerning for us today is that we could not use the tyres as we did during testing and earlier this weekend. The team will work hard to understand the problem and to be in better shape next week in Malaysia.”