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Nic Ladds 25th Oct 2011 - 8:44

McLaren looking forward to India

McLaren's Jenson Button and apparently newly-single Lewis Hamilton have given short interviews ahead of what's sure to be an exciting weekend of racing on a new continent, the inaugural Indian F1 Grand Prix.

Jenson Button - priced at 7/2 in the betting for the Indian Grand Prix - and also available to come second in the Drivers' Standings at 8/13 - began

"The first time you run on a new circuit is a strange experience because you're piecing together an incredibly diverse and vivid set of data in your mind. That's quite an intense experience.

"You're quickly gathering everything together - constantly assessing the grip-level, watching for unexpected bumps, checking the kerb-height, run-off areas, pitlane entry and exit, gradient. And that all happens at about 170mph!"

Jenson's first impressions of the track

"Well, I can't really say properly until I've driven it. But the track itself has quite a nice mix of corners - the start of the lap is pretty stop-start, there are a couple of long straights mixed with tight hairpins, but it's the end of the lap that's more interesting: there are some pretty high-speed changes of direction through the esses and some gradient change.

"One of the things that looks really interesting is the double-apex banked corner at the back of the circuit - that's pretty unusual. It's sort of a mix between Turn 13 at China and Korea's Turn 11.

Meanwhile, Lewis Hamilton - 11/4 second favourite for India behind favourite Sebastian Vettel (6/5) - took his turn with the press;

"I've been (to India) a few times before - we've done a few Vodafone promotional days there. The last time was just crazy - just after Singapore, we did a demo run in Bangalore and were expecting 5,000 people to turn up. On the day, there were around 40,000 fans - it was just incredible."

"You can't believe how many people are aware of Formula 1 and how many are looking forward to the race next week. There's already a great deal of knowledge about the sport - I think it's going to be a big deal.

"India's a sport-mad nation - mostly, it's about cricket, which is understandable because they're a very successful cricketing country, but I really think the people of India are going to take Formula 1 to their hearts. The reception we've had in the last few years has been greater than I could ever have predicted and I think the whole country is ready for something new and something exciting.

"I really hope India will get turned on to Formula 1 in a big way - it would be amazing to have an entire continent supporting you - and I really hope we can put on a fantastic race!"

The Force India team will be preparing to put on a proud show for the home fans with British driver Paul Di Resta (1000/1) set to proudly show off the car's Indian Flag colored livery.

Indian Grand Prix Outright betting: Sebastian Vettel 6/5, Lewis Hamilton 11/4, Jenson Button 7/2, Mark Webber 6/1, Fernando Alonso 7/1, Felipe Masa 100/1, Nico Rosberg 100/1, Michael Schumacher 150/1, Jaime Alguersuari 1000/1, Sebastien Buemi 1000/1, Vitaly Petrov 1000/1, Adrian Sutil 1000/1, Bruno Senna 1000/1, Kamui Kobayashi 1000/1, Sergio Perez 1000/1, Paul Di Resta 1000/1, Rubens Barrichello 1500/1, Pastor Maldonado 1500/1, Vitantonio Liuzzi 5000/1, Jerome D'Ambrosio 5000/1, Heikki Kovalainen 5000/1, Daniel Ricciardo 5000/1, Jarno Trulli 5000/1.

(Source: McLaren)


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