Domenicali: "We need to keep our feet on the ground"
Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro team principal Stefano Domenicali revealed a special reason for extra celebration after Ferrari's one-two in the Bahraini GP at the weekend. "We are celebrating here the 100th victory since our president Montezemolo became president of Ferrari so it's a special event for all of us. I think it's important because he's always with us and celebrating this with a one-two is very important."
Domenicali was ask how important it was for winner Felipe Massa to have a good result in Bahrain, after failing to score in the first two races of the season. "I think that it was important for him, for sure," replied Domenicali, "but it was important for the team to have this 18 point race. We saw that right from Friday our car was really good, and it's a shame when you have a car that is good not to score 18 points. It would be nice to see both drivers on the first step of the podium but that's impossible so I think from the team's point of view, it was really a great response, that's teamwork, as always and I would say that it."
How much pressure was the Brazilian feeling, coming into the Bahrain weekend? "It's normal when you don't have any points, that you feel frustrated because you want to show what is your performance, your standard. But what we said is that we need to stay cool and calm. If we work well, this is the response and of course it's a daily job in order to always keep the team together: the drivers, the mechanics, the team and we win together, we lose together so that's the way we have always been working."
Domenicali was asked how worried he was about BMW Sauber, who have now twice finished second to Ferrari. "As I've always said, since the beginning, I was expecting a tough championship this year, including BMW, which had already shown, during testing, that it was better than last year. I always said that and this confirms what I always thought since the beginning, that it would be a very long championship, very long. It is a classification than is closer to soccer than an F1 season, and we are three teams covered by two points.
"That shows that we cannot lose one vital step because the others can take more important points, so it will be important to keep up the pace of reliability. We must not forget that we have to keep on developing our car to the maximum, because the others will not sleep, they will be back again very strongly in Spain and I'm expecting McLaren to be back again and up to standard in Barcelona. So what we have to do is work very hard and keep our feet on the ground, concentrate and that's the way we are used to doing it: reply on the track."
So who is the toughest competitor at the moment? "Right now," said Domenicali, "I have to say that we expect it to be both McLaren and BMW because we must not over-react to anything. As always, from the pragmatic point of view, we need to consider the points. The points show that BMW is in front of us in the Constructors' championship, and in the Drivers' championship they are behind Kimi so they are all there, but I am expecting McLaren to be back on the pace again very soon."
Will Ferrari be bringing a lot of developments to Barcelona? "We must not lose concentration, we need to keep up the pace in terms of reliability and performance. That's the reason why we want to bring something new to every race. Even if it's small it's important, because I'm not expecting the others to sleep. I'm pretty sure they are flat out, trying to do what they can, because the championship is open, we are still in only the first part, Spain is only the fourth race so it's very very long."