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  #21  
Old 26-09-2008, 19:30  Translate from English to Italian  Translate from English to French  Translate from English to German  Translate from English to Spanish  Translate from English to Dutch  Translate from English to Greek  Translate from English to Portuguese  Translate from English to Russian  Translate from English to Russian
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Excitement builds for Lewis
Championship leader expecting exciting times in Singapore

Lewis Hamilton expects an exciting race as Formula One goes under lights for the first time in Singapore - and he insists he will be going all-out for the win as the title race really starts to hot up.

23-year-old Hamilton is facing another tense title battle in just his second season in Formula One, as the McLaren man leads the way by just a single point heading to Singapore.

History will be made with the first Grand Prix to be staged at night in Singapore and Hamilton expects it to be an exciting occasion.

"I think the race will be very exciting," he said. "I think it could be even more exciting than some of the others we have had.

"As a night race everyone is in the unknown and don't know what to expect."
Simulator

Hamilton has spent hours in the simulator trying to get accustomed to the new street circuit, but he admits nothing can prepare him for tackling it for the first time proper.

The Stevenage-born driver says he will have to learn as he goes when he makes his way out onto the track for the first time.

"We have spent time in the simulator which is about as accurate as it can be as it gives us a good idea of the circuit," added Hamilton.

"Learning a new circuit is always tough. Simulations can give you an indication of where the first corner is but otherwise you have to learn it when you race.

"The team have done a lot of analysis and we are trying to find out as much as we can.

"But really when we get out on the track it will be a completely new experience."

Nerves

Hamilton came in seventh in Monza in the driving rain last time out, and he admits that the Italian GP was the first time he started to feel the nerves.

"The last race was probably the first time I have ever felt any kind of nerves," he said.

"Going down the straight at the beginning of the race I couldn't see a thing because of the rain.

"But generally I find it is just exciting. You are always calculating things, where the car needs to be, where I am going to be breaking, how much I break.

"I never approach a race saying I am aiming for fourth place. I always plan to win as scoring points is what is important.
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  #22  
Old 26-09-2008, 19:31  Translate from English to Italian  Translate from English to French  Translate from English to German  Translate from English to Spanish  Translate from English to Dutch  Translate from English to Greek  Translate from English to Portuguese  Translate from English to Russian  Translate from English to Russian
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Hamilton quickest in P1
Massa close behind in second

Championship leader Lewis Hamilton shone in the opening practice session for this weekend's historic night race by setting the fastest lap in Singapore on Friday.

The McLaren driver, clocked a time of one minute 45.518 seconds under the floodlights at the Marina Bay street circuit.

Ferrari's Felipe Massa, who trails Hamilton in the driver standings by a single point, finished 0.080secs behind the 23-year-old in second place.

Massa's team-mate Kimi Raikkonen clocked a time of 1:45.961 to take third while McLaren's Heikki Kovalainen claimed fourth with a fastest lap of 1:46.463.

BMW Sauber's Robert Kubica completed the top five with a time of 1:46.618.

Williams driver Nico Rosberg recorded a time of 1:46.710 to take sixth place while two-time world champion Fernando Alonso, who had briefly topped the timesheets, finished seventh in his Renault.

Nick Heidfeld of BMW Sauber, Renault's Nelson Piquet and Honda driver Jenson Button completed the top 10.

Red Bull's David Coulthard, eager to finish his Formula One career on a high, will be hoping for better after recording a time of 1:48.517 to finish 15th.
Floodlights

All eyes had been eagerly anticipating exactly how the circuit would look under floodlights and, as expected, it did not disappoint with all sections of the track brightly lit.

The rain and thunderstorms that had lashed Singapore in the morning failed to materialise in the evening meaning only a small section of standing water remained at Turn One as conditions were otherwise perfect.

Alonso, whose concerns regarding bumps at Turn 10 were allayed after the FIA rectified the issue, was quick from the start and set the initial pace but it did not take long for Hamilton to climb to the top of the standings.

Raikkonen briefly usurped Hamilton but the Englishman soon regained his lead, and he stayed there for the remainder of the session.

Mark Webber of Red Bull saw his practice ended early when he ploughed into the barrier at Turn 18 on only his fourth lap while Honda's Rubens Barrichello also crashed out when he spun off the track at the final corner.
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  #23  
Old 26-09-2008, 19:35  Translate from English to Italian  Translate from English to French  Translate from English to German  Translate from English to Spanish  Translate from English to Dutch  Translate from English to Greek  Translate from English to Portuguese  Translate from English to Russian  Translate from English to Russian
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Massa - Pole is crucial
Brazilian believes qualifying will make or break Singapore hopes

Ferrari racer Felipe Massa has highlighted the importance of a strong qualifying session ahead of Sunday's crucial Singapore Grand Prix.

The Brazilian heads to Asia just one point behind world championship leader Lewis Hamilton after the Briton lost his Belgian Grand Prix appeal on Tuesday.

And Massa has stressed the importance of claiming pole knowing that overtaking opportunities will be few and far between on the Singapore circuit.

"Saturday will be very important," he said of the qualifying session that will be held at 10:00 pm with Singapore making history as the sport's first-ever night race.

"I've never driven on the Singapore track but it'll be even more difficult to overtake compared to Valencia, because the straights are even shorter," the 26-year-old told the Straits Times newspaper.
Difficult

Massa won in Valencia - another street circuit new to the calendar this year - after starting from pole position.

Singapore will have several overtaking possibilities, the best at the end of Raffles Boulevard, but Massa admits street circuits are notoriously difficult for overtaking with the way cars are now designed.

"These days it is not very easy to overtake in Formula One, the cars have great aerodynamic downforce," said Massa.

"When you are behind a car, you lose downforce."

Rain is another potential hazard come Sunday. Singapore was lashed by wet weather on Wednesday, and Massa would prefer a dry track.

"I would prefer it to be dry in Singapore, but we can do well and have a consistent race in the wet as well," he said.
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  #24  
Old 26-09-2008, 19:35  Translate from English to Italian  Translate from English to French  Translate from English to German  Translate from English to Spanish  Translate from English to Dutch  Translate from English to Greek  Translate from English to Portuguese  Translate from English to Russian  Translate from English to Russian
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Kimi - I want to win
Defending world champ concedes championship is now out of his hands

Ferrari ace Kimi Raikkonen wants to get back to winning ways in the Singapore Grand Prix this weekend after admitting his hopes of retaining the world crown are slim.

The Finn is sitting in fourth place in the standings with four races to go, and has to make up a massive 21 points on leader Lewis Hamilton.

While conceding this year's championship is now out of his hands, he just wants to taste victory again, after last being successful in the Spanish Grand Prix in April.

He told www.ferrariworld.com: "The most important thing is to win again. The situation in the championship is what it is and it doesn't depend any more only on my results, but of my competitors' results.
Not over

"In theory it's not over yet, but I don't have it under control any more."

He added: "We'll give it our best at Singapore, so that we can fight for the win, which still remains the main objective. We have to give it all in these four races and then we'll see what's going to happen.

"I've said it many times: victory is the only objective, the essence of motor racing. I'm not just here for driving, but I want to win."

But to win in Singapore, Raikkonen will have to master the unfamiliar Marina Bay street circuit.

The omens are not good - given he has not performed on other street circuits this year - but the Finn, who has signed a new contract with Ferrari, remains optimistic.

He said: "I've been waiting for September 28.

Pure emotion

"Of course when I think of the results I had this year on street circuits, I shouldn't be too optimistic, but I still like to race on this kind of track: it's pure emotion, when you find the right set up for the single-seater and race between the walls.

"I don't think that it will be a big problem that we race at night. They've done it already with motorbikes and it was a great experience.

"I'm someone who likes to sleep late. My body will adapt perfectly fine to this unusual time of day.
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  #25  
Old 28-09-2008, 13:08  Translate from English to Italian  Translate from English to French  Translate from English to German  Translate from English to Spanish  Translate from English to Dutch  Translate from English to Greek  Translate from English to Portuguese  Translate from English to Russian  Translate from English to Russian
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Alonso fastest again
Hamilton second fastest, Massa third

Fernando Alonso was once again fastest as he topped the timesheet in the final session of free practice ahead of qualifying for Sunday's Singapore Grand Prix.

The Renault driver, who had pipped McLaren's Lewis Hamilton to the fastest lap in second practice, clocked a time of one minute 44:506 seconds.

Brit ace Hamilton finished 0.613 seconds behind his former team-mate in second, while Ferrari's Felipe Massa was third with a time of 1:45.246.

Alonso's team-mate Nelson Piquet took fourth, while Williams driver Nico Rosberg finished fifth.

Times
01 F. Alonso Renault 1:44.506, 19 laps
02 L. Hamilton McLaren 1:45.119, 12 laps
03 F. Massa Ferrari 1:45.246, 16 laps
04 N. Piquet jr. Renault 1:45.249, 17 laps
05 N. Rosberg Williams 1:45.386, 16 laps
06 J. Button Honda 1:45.409, 20 laps
07 R. Kubica BMW 1:45.425, 17 laps
08 M. Webber Red Bull 1:45.450, 21 laps
09 S. Vettel Scuderia Toro Rosso 1:45.477, 18 laps
10 S. Bourdais Scuderia Toro Rosso 1:45.599, 17 laps
11 N. Heidfeld BMW 1:45.689, 19 laps
12 K. Nakajima Williams 1:45.982, 18 laps
13 H. Kovalainen McLaren 1:45.982, 12 laps
14 R. Barrichello Honda 1:46.073, 21 laps
15 T. Glock Toyota 1:46.180, 22 laps
16 J. Trulli Toyota 1:46.221, 18 laps
17 K. Räikkönen Ferrari 1:46.482, 10 laps
18 D. Coulthard Red Bull 1:46.794, 6 laps
19 G. Fisichella Force India F1 1:47.166, 14 laps
20 A. Sutil Force India F1 1:47.727, 19 laps
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  #26  
Old 28-09-2008, 13:08  Translate from English to Italian  Translate from English to French  Translate from English to German  Translate from English to Spanish  Translate from English to Dutch  Translate from English to Greek  Translate from English to Portuguese  Translate from English to Russian  Translate from English to Russian
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Massa hails a 'perfect lap'
Brazilian confident ahead of night race

Felipe Massa has hailed his perfect lap around the streets of Singapore, which saw him take pole position away from title rival Lewis Hamilton.

Massa put in a sublime 1:44.801 to take the coveted grid slot from his McLaren rival by a hefty 0.664 seconds. It was a show of master class that left even the Brazilian in awe.

"The car was perfect, so nice to drive smoothly, and then I managed to do a perfect lap, so that always helps when you have a good car," said the Ferrari driver.

"I did not make a single mistake, it was a great achievement.

"It is just a great feeling, coming to the last corner I knew I could not make any mistakes, so I just made corner by corner perfectly, not making a single mistake and when I came to the last corner I thought 'take it easy' but I couldn't!

"So I took it quick anyway. It was so fantastic. It is the most incredible feeling you can feel as a racing driver. To achieve what you want is always a great achievement.

"It is pretty tough, a very difficult track, so to get every corner right is really, really difficult.

"The light and visibility isn't a big problem and you don't really think about it once you're in the car trying to get the most out of it."

Having beaten the man he most needs to during qualifying, Massa now aims to repeat the feat when the drivers line-up on the grid on Sunday night for F1's first foray into night racing.

The 27-year-old, though, isn't expecting an easy ride to the chequered flag.

"It will be a very difficult race, for sure, concentration will be ten times more than any other usual circuit, maybe even more than Monaco because there are so many corners."
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  #27  
Old 28-09-2008, 13:09  Translate from English to Italian  Translate from English to French  Translate from English to German  Translate from English to Spanish  Translate from English to Dutch  Translate from English to Greek  Translate from English to Portuguese  Translate from English to Russian  Translate from English to Russian
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Hamilton happy with second
Brit upbeat despite losing pole to Massa

Championship leader Lewis Hamilton insists he is happy to start second on the grid in Sunday's inaugural Singapore Grand Prix.

McLaren driver Hamilton had looked on course to take first place after setting the fastest lap late in the final session on the Marina Bay street circuit.

But Ferrari's Felipe Massa produced a superb final lap to take first place by sixth-tenths of a second from Hamilton.

Kimi Raikkonen, despite having endured a disappointing practice session earlier in the evening, completed a fine qualifying session for Ferrari by claiming third place.

"It was one of those things and I was very fortunate to get through," said Hamilton. "But I'm happy with the result.

"We are not worried. We are in a very strong position and I am quite happy with where I am."

Hamilton, however, conceded that overtaking will be almost impossible on the challenging street circuit tomorrow.

"You won't be able to overtake here," he added. "For the quicker cars if there is not much time difference. We will just do the best job we can tomorrow.
Best shot

"We have just got to play it by ear and give it the best shot we can tomorrow."

Honda's Jenson Button will start in 12th while David Coulthard is two places further back in his Red Bull.

"It is not good to start the race tomorrow in the middle of the pack," said Coulthard.

"The main factors for this track are getting the right tyre and getting your eye in so that you turn at the right point.

"On a track like this you really need miles to get your hand in."
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  #28  
Old 28-09-2008, 22:59  Translate from English to Italian  Translate from English to French  Translate from English to German  Translate from English to Spanish  Translate from English to Dutch  Translate from English to Greek  Translate from English to Portuguese  Translate from English to Russian  Translate from English to Russian
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Massa on Singapore pole
Hamilton alongside championship rival on the grid

Felipe Massa will start the Singapore Grand Prix from the front of the grid after wrapping up qualification with a storming final lap.

The Brazilian's Ferrari will share the front row with Lewis Hamilton while Kim Raikkonen and the Sauber of Robert Kubica start from the second row.

Massa, who trails Hamilton by a single point in the drivers' championship, beat the McLaren driver by more than half a second under the lights at the Marina Bay street circuit.

He clocked a time of one minute, 44:519 seconds in his final lap and admitted it was a flawless performance from both driver and car.

"The car was perfect," said Massa. "I managed to do a perfect lap and that always helps when you have a good car."

Hamilton was fortunate to make the final session after only being eighth fastest in Q2, but a solid final lap set the benchmark for Massa to smash late on.

Heikki Kovalainen finished fifth in the second McLaren, which needed a new engine prior to qualifying, while Nick Heidfeld originally qualified in sixth before demoted to ninth on the grid.

The German was handed the three-place penalty for impeding Honda's Rubens Barrichello during the first qualifying session.

Heidfeld was ruled to have entered the pit lane too slowly and was consequently caught by Barrichello on a flying lap.

Monza winner Sebastian Vettel will start from sixth in the Toro Rosso with Timo Glock seventh, Nico Rosberg eighth and Kazuki Nakajima 10th.

Honda's Jenson Button, despite a promising performance in the final practice session earlier in the day, will start on 12th while David Coulthard is two places further back in his Red Bull.

However, there was bitter disappointment for Fernando Alonso, who had looked very fast in three practive sessions but must start from 15th on the grid.

The Spaniard's Renault cut out midway through the second qualifying session leaving Alonso with little alternative but to abandon the car.

"The race is lost. You can't overtake here and I'm starting from 15th, so I will be going out just to lap the track, but it's over already," he said.

Times
01 F. Massa Ferrari 1:44.801
02 L. Hamilton McLaren 1:45.465
03 K. Räikkönen Ferrari 1:45.617
04 R. Kubica BMW 1:45.779
05 H. Kovalainen McLaren 1:45.873
06 S. Vettel Scuderia Toro Rosso 1:46.244
07 T. Glock Toyota 1:46.328
08 N. Rosberg Williams 1:46.611
09 N. Heidfeld BMW 1:45.964*
10 K. Nakajima Williams 1:47.547
11 J. Trulli Toyota 1:45.038
12 J. Button Honda 1:45.133
13 M. Webber Red Bull 1:45.212
14 D. Coulthard Red Bull 1:45.298
15 F. Alonso Renault no time
16 N. Piquet jr. Renault 1:46.037
17 S. Bourdais Scuderia Toro Rosso 1:46.389
18 R. Barrichello Honda 1:46.583
19 A. Sutil Force India F1 1:47.940
20 G. Fisichella Force India F1 no time
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  #29  
Old 28-09-2008, 23:00  Translate from English to Italian  Translate from English to French  Translate from English to German  Translate from English to Spanish  Translate from English to Dutch  Translate from English to Greek  Translate from English to Portuguese  Translate from English to Russian  Translate from English to Russian
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Fortune favours Rosberg
Williams driver delighted by second in Singapore

Nico Rosberg admitted he thought the safety car had ruined his chances of a strong showing in Singapore.

Rosberg was one of two drivers, the other being BMW's Robert Kubica, whose low fuel loads forced them to stop when the pit lane was still closed after the safety car came out on lap 15.

The result was that Rosberg was handed a 10-second stop-go penalty, however, the delay in investigating the incident meant that the Williams driver, who was leading at the time, was able to pull out a gap over his rivals.

This allowed him to remain near the front of the pack after taking his penalty and he went on to finish the grand prix in second place behind Fernando Alonso.

"When I had to come in, I saw the safety car out," explained Rosberg. "The crew said 'come in this lap'

"I was really annoyed as I thought that was it, the end of it.

"But then I saw I was able to pull a gap afterwards even after the stop."

And having survived that penalty, Rosberg admitted: "Everything went our way which is great for me and the team.
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Old 28-09-2008, 23:00  Translate from English to Italian  Translate from English to French  Translate from English to German  Translate from English to Spanish  Translate from English to Dutch  Translate from English to Greek  Translate from English to Portuguese  Translate from English to Russian  Translate from English to Russian
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Alonso thrilled with win
Spaniard revels in unexpected return to top step of the podium

Fernando Alonso was overjoyed after winning the Singapore Grand Prix from 15th on the grid.

The Renault driver, who came into the race without a podium all season, proved to be the quickest man in two of the weekend's three practice sessions.

It appeared any chance a points finish had been undone when he experienced a fuel pressure problem during Saturday's qualifying, leaving 15th on the grid for the first nigh race in Formula One history.

The Spaniard opted to start the race on a three-stop fuel load in the hope of making up places at the start, however, Renault switched strategy to a two-stopper after he was badly held up to Jarno Trulli during the first stint.

But moments later when his team-mate Nelson Piquet Jnr crashed, bringing out the safety car, Alonso found himself in prime position to take the lead, which he held onto to take the win.

"It's a fantastic first podium of the season and first win," he said. "I'm extremely happy and can't believe it right now.

"I think I need a couple of days to realise that we won a race this year which seemed impossible all season to be that close to the top guys."
Luck

Alonso conceded that he had enjoyed his fair share of luck during the race.

"We've been competitive since Friday and unlucky in qualifying but lucky today," he continued.

"We started at the back and the first safety car helped me a lot and I was able then to win the race.

"We chose to do a very aggressive first stint because we knew starting fifteenth you can't overtake and we thought about one stop but had concerned about the brakes, so we tried something very different with a short first stint, try to make as many places and see from there.

"After that we got in front and were able to build a gap to the guys behind us. The car was very good. I was with the better tyre in the last stint so had a bit of an advantage over Nico (Rosberg) and I was able to pull away.
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