Hamilton suffered with tyre wear in Korea before exiting from the Japanese Grand Prix on lap nine after sustaining damage from a puncture on lap one. Rosberg hasn’t had it any easier, losing positions at the Korea International Circuit after a nosecone failure and recovering from a drive-through penalty at the Suzuka circuit to finish in ninth place.
After a tough few races, both can’t wait to return to India and tackle the challenging Buddh International Circuit. Looking ahead to the race weekend, Hamilton said: “I have really enjoyed our two visits to India so far. It’s such a vibrant country and the support that we’ve received from the fans there has been fantastic. They love sport and the knowledge that some of the fans that I’ve met have had about Formula One has been great to see. I really hope that we can see the country take Formula One to heart in the future.”
Commenting on the track and his expectations, he added: “I also really like the Buddh International Circuit. The layout has a great rhythm and I love the fast turns and high speeds. We’re hoping for a strong weekend after a couple of difficult races and I know that everyone has been working really hard to make sure that we can get all of the performance possible from the car over the last four races. We know that we have a good car and, if we can put together a good race weekend, then we have the potential for some great results before the season is over.”
“I’m looking forward to our trip to India,” said team-mate Rosberg. “It really is a fascinating country and there is always something new to see or experience when you are there for the race weekend. The track itself is pretty challenging and there are good overtaking opportunities at the end of the long straight so the race should hopefully be quite exciting. The Indian fans are very passionate and increasingly knowledgeable about our sport and I hope they will enjoy the experience and provide some good support for our team.”
He added: “The last few races haven’t been the best for us so I am hoping for a good weekend. We are all determined to finish the season strongly and to continue our challenge for second place in the Constructors’ Championship.”
Red Bull Racing may be dominating the constructors’ championship but the battle for second is hotly fought. Ferrari currently occupies the runner-up spot but Mercedes and Lotus are determined to finish the season in second place. Commenting on the battle, executive director Toto Wolff said: “The last three races have shown us that we have a real fight on our hands to secure second place in the Constructors’ Championship – but also that we have the performance to achieve our goal if we consistently deliver the full potential of the car. We quickly put the disappointing weekend in Japan behind us and are now fully focused on the final four races of the season.”
Image courtesy of Octane Photographic