F1 »

Q&A – Nick Heidfeld, Lotus Renault GP

Nick Heidfeld: I'm pretty pleased with my race performances this season and I think given the conditions and situations at various races we have put in our best efforts.

Lotus Renault GP driver Nick Heideld looks back on the first five races of F1 2011 ahead of this weekend's Monaco Grand Prix.



Q:
Five races into the 2011 campaign, how has the Lotus Renault GP experience been for you?

Nick Heidfeld:
It's been a great experience so far. Obviously it was a very late call for me to come into the team; from the first day on I felt extremely welcome and I have really enjoyed working with the guys. We started trying to improve things together during winter testing and I'm still trying to work together with everyone to improve things further. As the season progresses, it becomes trickier to go into specific details (like you can when you are testing) because you are focusing just so much on the actual racing, but all in all it has been a positive experience so far.

Q:
How easy was it to come in at such short notice?

Nick Heidfeld:
Lotus Renault GP made it very easy for me. It could have been very difficult, but actually in this instance it was not. Also for the team, I don't think it was an easy situation having to make a plan after what happened to Robert [Kubica] who is still very much a part of the team and did a great job last year, but we had to deal with the circumstances as they happened. But the team is a very open one and we all knew we had to deal with the situation and make the best we possibly could out of it. We are able to have lots of dialogue and suggest things, and LRGP has been the most open out of all the teams I have driven for in my career – that is something I like a lot and it is the reason I feel so at home here. From the very beginning there has been a lot of trust in each other, so it fits very well for me.

Q:
How does the challenge of joining Lotus Renault rank alongside the other ones you have had in your career?

Nick Heidfeld:
Well, the challenges I've faced in F1 have all been very different. The unique thing about this season is that I was pretty sure I would not start the season as a racing driver because I was expecting to start as a test or reserve driver. Obviously the news came very late in the day, the year had already started and one test had already taken place, so then to get the opportunity to have a driver's seat – and in a good team – was a very special situation.

Q:
At the current stage of your career, do you approach things differently than you did say 5 or 6 years ago?

Nick Heidfeld:
Yes, you develop and mature as a person and driver over the years but just in a normal and natural way. Of course, to have experience as a driver helps a lot when you go out on track.

Q:
There has been plenty of talk among fans and media that the R31 has not yet reached its potential – do you agree?

Nick Heidfeld:
There's always room for improvement and, as a driver, I'm never completely satisfied unless I achieve the absolute maximum – I am always striving for more. I think we did reach our best at the beginning of the season when we got onto the podium two races running, but then on the other hand in a couple of races I have not started at particularly strong places on the grid. Some of the poorer grid positions have been down to bad luck but I don't feel you can just call it bad luck and leave it there, you could say you make your own luck. There is always room to plan and prepare things differently to avoid getting into those unlucky situations. Overall, I'm pretty pleased with my race performances this season and I think given the conditions and situations at various races we have put in our best efforts.

Q:
Last weekend you came from the back of the grid to finish 8th – do you like driving in those sort of conditions where you can race unnoticed?

Nick Heidfeld:
The best thing as a driver is to fight at the front and win, but if you are starting last and finishing 8th it really is so much fun. Fighting your way through the field and having to be at your absolute limit right through the race is a unique situation and a lot more fun.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
26.05.2011- Second Practice Session, Nick Heidfeld (GER) Lotus Renault GP R31
26.05.2011- First Practice Session, Nick Heidfeld (GER) Lotus Renault GP R31
26.05.2011- First Practice Session, Nick Heidfeld (GER) Lotus Renault GP R31
26.05.2011- First Practice Session, Nick Heidfeld (GER) Lotus Renault GP R31
21.05.2011- Saturday Practice, Nick Heidfeld (GER) Lotus Renault GP R31

Start the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.




© 1999 - 2014 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.