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Ross: “A reasonably encouraging start”

Ross: “A reasonably encouraging start”

Ross was in today’s official press conference in Melbourne. Here are some edited highlights from what he had to say…

On today’s performance…

“Well, it’s certainly better than being at the back! The only reason I qualify it is that we have no idea what people are running on fuel. We’ve had little windows of running on the dry. Our cars were doing different things to try to understand and get some information for tomorrow. It’s been a reasonably encouraging start but we’re not getting carried away because different people were doing different things today.”

On pre-season preparations…

“We’re much better prepared than we were last year. Last year we were not in good shape at this stage of the season. So, we made a big effort to strengthen the team, do things more effectively, and to arrive at the beginning of this season in a much better state of preparation. I must commend the people who’ve been involved with that. We’re not where we want to be yet in many ways but we’re a lot better than we were 12 months ago. And if we can keep that rate of progress going, then I’m extremely optimistic for the future. The car functions well, it cools well, it does all the basic things properly. And all of our resource can be focussed on trying to find performance for the next part of the season.”

On paddock intrigue…

“For me, the magic of Formula One is not just the drivers, it’s the technology, the engineering, the innovation, the stories that fill the web pages and the media. It’s something that I think is a great thing for Formula One. When I hear these people talking about how we need to have standard cars and just let the drivers… they miss the whole point of Formula One, which is the magic of everything that happens in Formula One.”

On an ‘interesting system’ in the W03…

“Innovation is the lifeblood of Formula One racing, I’ve oversold that point already. We have an interesting system on the car and it’s not complicated at all, so I’m sure other teams are looking at it and they need to decide if it’s worthwhile or not. It’s obviously helpful, that’s why we’re doing it but it’s not a massive performance gain.”

On cost control in Formula One…

“I’m a great supporter of the concept of the Resource Restriction Agreement, that we have a certain amount of money, a certain number of people we can use and we try and get the cleverest people to do the best job and we win because those people are doing a better job than other people in other teams, not because we’ve spent twice as much as somebody else.

“Certainly Mercedes’ principle is not to steamroller Formula One with unlimited resource and win on the power of what we’ve spent. We’re very prudent, we want Formula One to be a good example and we believe that the Resource Restriction and some sensible technical regulations and sporting regulations is the best way.”

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