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Italy 2011 - Post race press conference // Questions and answers from the podium three at Monza

Published by Christine

Questions to the top three drivers following the race on Sunday in Italy.

Race winner: Sebastian Vettel - Red Bull

Q: A great win made possible by that overtake on Fernando early on, and then some tears from you on the podium as well?

"Very emotional. This circuit means a lot to me and has been very special. Obviously, my first win here, so when I crossed the line I remembered every single bit. The podium is unbelievable. When you stand up there, you feel so blessed. So many people underneath, filled with people, it's unbelievable. A circuit that has been tough for us to be competitive the last two years. Really the car was amazing, qualifying yesterday and even better in the race today.

"The start wasn't that good. Fernando, I didn't know where he was coming from... I was able to pass him, he didn't give me much room... it was just enough. Very enjoyable and then after that it was just fantastic. A great race for us and a very special win. Thanks to all the fans. Obviously last time all the Italian people were cheering a bit more but still, it's very special for me."

Q: Before the race all the talk was of the gamble that you'd taken on the gearing. You must have been a little concerned when you found yourself behind Fernando?

"I don't think we took any gamble for today, we took the gamble yesterday in qualifying. Our top speed wasn't high, our gears were probably shorter than the rest of the field. We were not that optimistic in qualifying... but for the race we were pretty confident and we were not afraid of the DRS zones in case we had to battle other people.

"It worked fantastically well, I was able to pass Fernando without DRS, but with it, it would have been more comfortable a lap later. I think we did the right thing. Great race car, great strategy all the way through."

Q: You only need, I believe, a podium in Singapore to be crowned a two-time World Champion at the age of 24. Thoughts on that?

"It's been an incredible year so far, to be honest. We've progressed so much as a team.. from last year to this year made incredible steps. I think we've put ourselves in a very good position. I love racing, we enjoy racing as a team every weekend. Unpacking the car, you can see the passion. You can feel the challenge, we want to make sure we have a good weekend and we squeeze everything out of ourself. It's very nice to win, but if we have a good Sunday and finish third or fifth, we're very good at optimising results. I don't know, I think we'll do Singapore as we've done all the other races this year. Just go there, step by step and see what we can do... I'm looking forward and we'll see what happens then."

2nd place: Jenson Button - McLaren

Q: You reprised your battle with Fernando from last year but this time you came out in front.

"It was a really fun race, actually. Fighting with Lewis, with Michael and with Fernando. It was a good race, it wasn't for the lead which was a shame, but it was always going to be very difficult. A tough start to the race but a lot of fun. The atmosphere here is fantastic, it's electric. Another good race, we've just got to get everything together on race weekends. Great job by the whole team, just little things we need to work on."

Q: Tell us about that decisive pass on your team-mate and also Michael Schumacher on lap 17.

"I think Lewis got a bad run out of turn two and I used the KERS. I think I passed him on turn two. Used the KERS to my advantage, then got a good run on Michael down into Ascari. I saw Lewis tried a few times on the outside but it didn’t work but gave it a go and braked a late as I could and the pass came off. Pretty good pass. Probably one of my best so very happy with that. And again with Fernando I think he made a bit of a mistake out of turn two and now we have KERS as soon as someone makes a mistake you can pounce and make the pass."

3rd place: Fernando Alonso - Ferrari

Q: You said before the race that the start was going to be crucial. Have you ever done a better start than that?

"We've been doing some good starts but always starting fifth or sixth is not enough room to overtake. Here at Monza we knew that if the car was the same good starts, we knew there was enough space to overtake into the first corner... We were leading the race for the first couple of laps but obviously we weren't competitive enough to fight for victory. We had to maximise the podium possibility.

"As Sebastian mentioned, here in Monza it's very passionate, with the fans at the podium giving you big emotions. Well done to the whole team, a stressful weekend and a lot of pressure. We managed the race as best as possible, with no mistakes.

Q: Sebastian said a minute ago you didn’t give him very much room. What’s your analysis of the situation?

"We have nothing to lose in the battle with Sebastian. He's leading the championship, so obviously when we have to defend we'll be a bit harder with him. Sorry mate."

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