For the Scuderia Ferrari team, the Singapore Grand Prix will be the first event since Team Principal Luca di Montezemolo announced he was stepping down, and after the disappointments of Monza, both Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen will be hoping for a much more positive race around the Marina Bay street circuit.
It is rumoured that fuel consumption will be high around the Singapore circuit, but for Alonso it will not be a problem for the Spaniard, as the track gives a lot of opportunities to save fuel.
“Fuel will be tight here and we will have to save a little bit extra,” said Alonso. “It should be manageable, especially as the track layout allows you to save fuel quite easily compared to other circuits as you are generally safe from overtaking moves.”
Referring to the changes made by the FIA with regards to what can be transmitted to the drivers over the radio, Alonso does not believe it will have any effect on the racing, insisting that at Ferrari nothing would have changed from before the new rules were introduced.
“It won’t make a big difference to be honest,” said Alonso. “I don’t think it will have a huge impact on the race itself, or preparations for the weekend. In any case, at Ferrari we have not used the radio for any performance related reasons. We tend to use it to control temperatures, to talk about traffic and strategy. I cannot say how it might affect other teams.
“As for the change in general, it has generated a lot of media attention, like the situation with FRIC, but in that case, we saw the final impact on the race was nothing special. I think it will be a similar case with this radio rule. It’s like if you’re a coach in football or basketball and cannot talk to your players – in the end it’s the player who shoots the ball. It won’t change our driving style and it’s not as though we won’t know how to drive the circuit.”
Team-mate Raikkonen is hoping the remaining six races of the season give him the opportunity to get some good results for the team, having struggled more this season than anyone was expecting, including himself. He feels happier in recent races, but knows there is still plenty of work to do.
“For the rest of the season, we are going to try as hard as we can, because I still want to get good results for me and for the team,” said Raikkonen. “It’s going to be difficult and of course this season was not what we hoped for as we expected to do better.
“There have been some pretty good improvements from us as a team and I am happier, but there is still a lot of work to do.”