FIA Formula 3: Hello and welcome to today's FIA Formula 3 press conference following qualifying here at Silverstone. Joining us we have our top three from qualifying. On pole position Jüri Vips from Hitech Grand Prix, in second place Marcus Armstrong from PREMA Racing and in third place Jehan Daruvala from PREMA Racing. Jüri your first win came in Austria two weeks ago followed up by your first pole position here at Silverstone. How good does it feel to finally get that pole under your belt and ticked off?
Jüri Vips: Honestly it's amazing because for the first part of the season so far we have struggled a little bit in qualifying rather than the races. I think we're slowly getting better and better every race weekend. In Austria everything sort of came together for the weekend as a whole. We scored very good points and did well in quali. So far here we've gone one step further so we'll try and emulate what we did a few weeks back tomorrow, and in Race 2 as well.
FIA Formula 3: Your session today, as a whole, was a really close qualifying with these two guys fighting against you. How tough was it, lap after lap, making those marginal gains that were so crucial to getting pole?
Jüri: The second run was quite clean and easy, obviously it's very high pressure, but it was the first run that was very difficult for me. We were out of sequence with the Charouz drivers so I had traffic in all the push laps that I did. That was very difficult. I nearly crashed a few times actually laughs so I'm actually quite lucky that I got to do a second run. Luckily I didn't crash and the car was mega so I've got my first pole this year.
FIA Formula 3: Congratulations. Marcus moving on to you now. You were sitting quite comfortably clear of the field at one point before ending up P2, where did you feel that pole position got away from you today?
Marcus Armstrong: The answer to that question is pretty easy. I did lose the car quite dramatically on the exit of Maggotts and Becketts. I think I was pushing probably a little bit too hard, but then again I wanted pole laughs. As Jüri said, coming into the last lap it was quite high pressure. When I crossed the line and saw 43.9 on my dash to be honest I thought it was going to be a slam dunk. I looked at the board before I did the lap and doing 43.9 was going to be clear of everyone. Unfortunately it was not! Firstly I saw that Jehan was only a hundredth behind me when I saw the TV, then I looked over and saw that Jüri had gone purple and green. As I said at the Red Bull Ring that's the worst part of the quali session when you've done your lap and you're just waiting, watching the TV and waiting for the radio call to say 'hey, you've just lost pole' laughs. I'm sure Jüri loves to hear that he's got it though! All in all it was quite a decent quali. The race is going to be difficult tomorrow. In my opinion it's going to be different to the Red Bull Ring.
FIA Formula 3: In what way will it be different? I remember in Austria you said it would be flat out, non-stop. Is it going to be a bit more about management here?
Marcus: Firstly, the top speeds are higher here. At the Red Bull Ring it was a little bit frustrating how you could only just get to sixth gear on the straights so you couldn't maximise the DRS usage. In a way that makes life difficult for Jüri, having to defend from a higher speed with DRS. I think also we have less experience of how to manage around Silverstone. Generally I think it's going to be interesting - for the fans especially.
FIA Formula 3: Good luck tomorrow. Jehan moving on to you now. A really good late jump all the way up the order. Are you pretty pleased with your qualifying on the whole to end up P3 today?
Jehan Daruvala: Yeah I think in general I'm pretty happy with how it went. The first run pretty much went to plan. The first lap was quite good. I was first in the first push and I think on the second lap I lost the rears a lot, in Sector 2 especially through Maggotts and Becketts. I had a few big moments around there. After the lap I was still fourth and I knew I was missing three and a half tenths in Sector 2. We made a slight balance change for the second run which gave me a bit more confidence. I didn't really warm up my tyres well enough on the second run to be honest. I didn't have any fronts in the first sector so I decided to risk it and not really push on the first lap to save everything I had for lap two. At the end it worked out pretty well. Similarly to what Marcus said, my jump was so big from one lap to the other that I thought I'd smashed pole as well laughs, but then I came around and I saw that I was P2, then a few moments later I was P3. But anyway it's good to be in the fight for pole every weekend, I'm pretty happy with that, just hope that one week it will hopefully come my way. Tomorrow it's important to have a good start and then see how the race goes. Hopefully we can fight for the win.
FIA Formula 3: Tomorrow you'll be starting three places ahead of your primary title rival at the moment, Robert Shwartzman. It's only early days in the season nearing the halfway point but how important are these little victories that you're getting, even on a Friday in qualifying?
Jehan: For me I don't really look at it like that. These guys are right in the fight for the championship so my goal is win the race and beat all of them.
FIA Formula 3: Well done. Jüri moving back to you now. You've built up some excellent momentum in recent weeks, including the win at the Red Bull Ring as we mentioned. Do you feel like you're hitting the right crest of your wave now in terms of form while looking at the title fight?
Jüri: I'd like to hope so, but I don't know. I go into every weekend fighting. I get more and more comfortable with the format, the car and the tyres and so on because F3 works very differently to what I was used to previously in my career. It's all coming along much better than it was at the beginning of the year with some bits from my side, from how I work or how I warm up the tyres, it's just little things apart from the driving itself--
Marcus: --And Nando's laughs
Jüri: Laughs Yeah, this is also an extra! But it's all coming together now much better than it was. I'll try my best to keep that momentum up.