|Fernando Alonso in this year's Ferrari|
Fernando Alonso met the press this afternoon in the Ferrari hospitality unit in the massive paddock at the Buddh circuit. The location is new, but the first question was much the same as ever, about Scuderia Ferrari’s prospects for the rest of the season.
“We just need to be honest with ourselves and do the best we can in the remaining races and work a lot better and more than we did this year if we want to improve for next year which is already our target," began the Spaniard. “With both championships decided, all teams are now thinking of 2012, not just us. So we will tackle the remaining races in this spirit, trying to enjoy them, by doing things you maybe cannot do if you are fighting for a championship. We can be very aggressive and take more risks in qualifying for example."
Having only seen this track in virtual form on the simulator, the Ferrari man was keen to get to grips with it for real. “I am very excited to be here, a new circuit is a new challenge from a driver’s point of view," said Fernando. “This circuit looks very interesting, especially the last sector, which is very different and quick, allowing for good flowing speed to be used. Normally, with a new track, we find the real thing is better than the simulator. I hope we get a good first impression in tomorrow’s practice. It is also my first time in India and it is always nice to discover a new country and to see Formula 1 in a new culture for a new audience. Hopefully, we can put on a good show for them on Sunday."
The deaths of Dan Wheldon in an Indy Car race and Marco Simoncelli in MotoGP, within the space of one week have highlighted the dangers of motor sport.
“It doesn’t affect you obviously when you are driving," said Fernando when asked if these incidents make him more aware of the danger of the sport. “The effect was during the week. Those were very sad days for motorsport. I watched Dan’s accident on a television replay and I was shocked for two or three days after that. Then with Marco, I saw that race live and I could not believe that these things still happen. When you close the visor, you don’t think about the risk. We love racing and we know it is dangerous, but the adrenalin it gives you blinds you to the risks. 320 km/h is approximately the maximum at this track and if something happens to your car there is a risk that you can have a big accident. But you don’t think about it when you are driving."