Team manager is always an impressive person. Particularly in Tsunami RT – it's hard not to notice Stelios Fakalis! Rally codriver in the past, Stelios has been organizing races and practices for many years afterwards, working with various rally teams, those Ukrainian and Russian included, and he overawes with the intimate knowledge of motor sports in these countries. The most frequent phrase in our team is "Ask Stelios". And here we are to ask him.
1. Can your rally experience help in circuit races?
S.F.: Of course, because it's more challenging task to organize a rally extended over a distance of hundreds kilometers. Rally manager has to be able to take all the possibilities and all the ways into consideration. The same is for circuit races, but excluding movings. So here I often anticipate problems before they emerge and resolve them instantly.
2. How do you resolve conflicts in the team? Are there any conflicts?
S.F.: Usually there are not, although out team consists of the people of various nationalities. My job is to put everything in line and connect all the people with each other. Connecting people, like Nokia. That's my culture. A team manager is an orchestra conductor, and I try to be a real maestro.
3. Is it more simple or more difficult to work with a female boss?
S.F.: It's equal. But women often are more clever than men. Both have mind but women use it more often for some reason.
4. What is the peculiarity of Tsunami RT?
S.F.: It's the only Ukrainian team that is seriously represented on European competitions. Other teams may be motorsport stars in their countries, but be completely unable to compete abroad. There are many rally teams that win Ukrainian or Russian national championships, but they are unpleasantly surprised with the results going abroad. Tsunami is a team that goes abroad, is not afraid to lose there and knows how to win.
5. What does the team do in midseason?
S.F.: In midseason we prepare the cars for the next season and perform a lot of practices. And at the same time we work in San-Marino as a car service. Snow riding is very popular in San-Marino in winter, and 80% of such cars are prepared by us.
6. There are many very different people in the team. What do they have in common?
S.F.: Everyone of us is a great professional in his or her area. It was very important for us to gather the best specialists independent on their home country. If some misunderstanding emerges due to culture differences, it's my job to remove them. But there are two concepts uniting us – intellect and professionalism.
7. What's your favorite race in this season?
S.F.: It's Spa. I have an incredible feeling with it. I was working in rally for many years, and Spa Francorchamps has something in common with the rally competition. This track is like a drug. I can't find words to describe what I feel about this race.
8. PCCI or PCCF?
S.F.: Both! Only together. Porsche Carrera is in general a perfect idea: very good car, consistent price, high level of competitors and good promotion. And there is a possibility to pass to the Supercup and then to the Formula series. It's a very sensible idea. In general, Porsche knows how to invent and implement good things.
9. What's the main secret of a good orchestra conductor... I mean, manager?
S.F.: My culture is think first, than speak. If I am angry, I need to calm down first and only then to make decisions. A decision made by an irritated person is 100% erroneous. And one more thing: you must not make a decision after having listened to only one part. You should know two points of view even if they are opposite.
10. Why are you the best team manager?
S.F.: I haven't said that. But if others say so, let it be. I work a lot. I love my job. It's not easy, sometimes it makes me angry, but I still love it. And money is not the most important aspect: first of all, it's a job from my heart, and after that it's for money. Clever people understand that.