23 June 2011
European Grand Prix – Thursday press conference – Pt.1
Drivers - Jaime Alguersuari (Toro Rosso), Fernando Alonso (Ferrari), Kamui Kobayashi (Sauber), Vitantonio Liuzzi (HRT) Mark Webber (Red Bull)
Jaime, pit-lane to eighth place in Canada. You must have been pretty pleased with that?
Yeah it was a good race. We did a good job by changing the set-up for the race on Sunday. We knew it was going to rain and the possibilities to score some points, to finish the race, were difficult starting from the pit-lane. But with all the changes we did for the race it was worth doing it. I felt much better with the car, with the set-up, with everything on the race but not on Friday or even on qualifying. It was a good race from the strategy side, from the team, from my side so I was quite happy, quite pleased with the race yes.
This time last year you finished 13th here. What are your feelings about this race?
Well you know we have some new things coming on the car. I think I am feeling a bit better with the tyres, with the car, with the set-up, a better understanding of it. Hopefully all the things that we have new for this weekend they work all together and we can have a bit of extra pace as well and we can finish in the points. That will be the main target for sure.
Daniel Ricciardo always seems to do something on Friday morning. How much is he a threat? Do you feel he is waiting in the wings ready to grab your seat in case things go wrong?
No, I think it is interesting as he gets to try different things on the car and at the end, still this year, I did not find the best way to improve the car, the performance, and am just still learning about the set-up, about the tyres, about so many things on the car. It is interesting that he also gets to know the car, to try to improve things on the car. I think it is quite interesting and it makes things a bit easier, a bit faster. But still I am not 100 per cent happy with everything going on. I think Canada was very important for us and we are finding our way to the best performance.
Vitantonio, a good 13th place in Montreal. It doesn't sound fantastic but 13th place is pretty good for an HRT car in the last race.
Definitely, for us it was a good achievement. It was a big target for us. We know that in dry conditions that target would be pretty impossible if the race goes normally. But everybody did a great job. We have to use that kind of situation where it is a bit of a crazy race like happened in Montreal to use it and optimise everything and the result came. Thirteenth position is the best result of the Hispania team and our target is half done as we did a step forward in terms of the Constructors' Championship and we are pushing really hard. We bring also some development every race. We had a good one for Montreal. It helped already in the dry as we have been ahead of Marussia Virgin in qualifying and in the race the crazy conditions helped us. But everybody did a really good job in the pit-stop, in strategy, and I think everybody has to be pretty pleased as I think everybody did a good job for the target we want to achieve this year.
Is Marussia Virgin where you have to look? You cannot look any further, Lotus?
Of course our target, we said from the beginning of the season, is to try to beat both, Virgin and Lotus. We know it is not going to be easy but that's what we are aiming for. Lotus is a bit further ahead in terms of lap time in dry condition but the programme for the championship is quite interesting. A lot of development should be coming soon. We are pushing day and night. It is not easy when you are a back marker but you are still fighting with other teams and you don't have to give up.
And you have got new bits here I think?
We have some little things coming here in terms of the mechanical side but we are aiming for a bigger one for Silverstone.
Kamui, a year ago from 18th place on the grid to seventh here. A typical Kamui type of drive I think?
I think it is another (inaudible word) race and I think it is most important how we handle strategy and tyre management, but I think this year it is different tyre with Pirelli. I think I try to do my best but I think last year I made a mistake in qualifying. This year I try to do the best in qualifying but we have to fight for the best strategy in the race.
Qualifying is really where you have got to aim at isn't it? We see you regularly racing very, very hard but if you could just move up the grid a bit it is going to make it easier.
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