I said at the time that Sunday in Singapore was probably the toughest moment of my year so far and, looking back on it, I still think that is true. To have the chance for a top result basically taken away before you even reach the grid is hard to swallow and, of course, it was a lot of points lost in the Championship battle. I can’t fault the effort of the team, though. I go to the factory and I see how hard everyone is working, so it’s clear that they want the results just as much as us drivers do. I have faith in my colleagues to improve our reliability and I know they will get it right. Next up we have the Japanese Grand Prix – which really is one of the special races in motorsport. There’s so much history at this race – especially at Suzuka. It’s definitely one of the best tracks in the world. The fans, too, are just unbelievable. They go absolutely crazy for Formula One and it’s so nice to see their enthusiasm for the sport. They show us so much support – the teams and all of us drivers individually – so we all really enjoy going there and seeing them all. I’m looking forward to this weekend – particularly with the car we have at the moment which should give us a good chance to get a great result.
Suzuka: In The Cockpit with Nico
Suzuka is really exciting to drive, with so many high-speed sections and a bit of everything thrown in around the lap. It’s also unique in that it’s the only track we go to which features a figure-of-eight configuration – crossing over itself around the mid-point of the circuit. This means you have almost the same amount of left turns as right turns – which is quite unusual as there are normally more in one direction than the other.
For me, the most exciting part of the track is the opening sector of the lap. It’s just a relentless, never-ending sequence of left, right, left, right, left turns running all the way up the hill. They’re all really high-speed corners which really flow into each other. If you get just one wrong all of the others after it will be wrong so it’s very, very challenging.