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Q&A - Narain Karthikeyan, HRT

Narain Karthikeyan back in a HRT race seat for 2012
Q:
It has finally been revealed that you will occupy the last seat available as an official driver, how are you facing this new challenge in Formula 1?

Narain Karthikeyan:
It all really started after the Indian GP, where we had a good performance which led to the belief that I am still competitive to drive in Formula 1. It is no secret how difficult it is to stay in F1 at this time, but I ensured that I was physically and mentally ready for any opportunity that arose. So I can't wait to get back in the car and return to action once again.

Q:
The uncertainty you've faced in the period spanning from the end of last season until the moment you've been confirmed can't have been easy to handle. What have you done to keep yourself occupied?

Narain Karthikeyan:
Well, there were more ups and downs than I can remember, positive and negative days – sometimes I just gave up but it was quickly followed by yet another glimmer of hope. It was exhausting mentally, but like the adage goes, all's well that ends well. There was plenty to keep me occupied during the winter though, like I said earlier I trained as hard as I would have if my drive was confirmed last season; fitness is critical in F1 and racing in general. Then there were lots of discussions, which meant a lot of travelling – flights, hotel stays and those sorts of things. So I didn't have a whole lot of time to sit and mull over things, to be honest.

Q:
This will be your third season in Formula 1, what targets have you set yourself?

Narain Karthikeyan:
As far as results go, it largely depends on the development of the car, although I must say that things are looking promising. Otherwise, I have no doubts in my ability, I am extremely confident as last year and after the first few races, I drove better than ever. So I'll be pushing hard no doubt about that.
A lot of things change this year even though it is the same team, and I am sure it'll be for the better. The new management is wholly focused on all-round improvement and from what I have seen – they will do so.

Q:
Practically the whole structure is new with respect to 2011, what sensations have the new directors given you?

Narain Karthikeyan:
The team has some very capable and experienced people on-board now, like the new Team Principal Luis Pérez-Sala and my teammate Pedro de la Rosa. So things are definitely changing for the better ever since the new owners have taken over. Saul (Ruiz de Marco, HRT F1 CEO) has a very good approach to what F1 should be, by applying his entrepreneurship experience to the team and I'm sure that it will lead to better things. Everyone knows it is impossible to change things in F1 overnight but we have certainly taken strides in the right direction.

Q:
How would you define yourself as a driver?

Narain Karthikeyan:
One thing's for sure – I never give up. I'm here, against all odds and expectations, which wouldn't have been possible otherwise. I have worked incredibly hard, I believe in my ability and know that I am as quick as anyone else out there.

Q:
What do you know about and what would you highlight about your teammate Pedro de la Rosa?

Narain Karthikeyan:
My first ever test was with Jaguar in 2001 and I remember Pedro was the team driver at the time. Even though I don't know him very well, I know that he's very experienced and from what I've seen, has a pleasant personality. We should be getting on well – it is not about trying to beat each other but working harmoniously to help the team progress as a whole. Healthy competition will collectively allow us to get the maximum out of the car and fast-forward the development process. He has a vast amount of developmental experience with a front-running team – so it'll count a lot for the team in terms of approaching things and making the most out of our resources.

Q:
What do you think you can contribute to the team this year?

Narain Karthikeyan:


Tagged as: HRT , Karthikeyan

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
14.10.2011- Friday Practice 1, Narain Karthikeyan (IND), Test Driver,  HRT Formula One Team
Narain Karthikeyan and Karun Chandhok reunited for RoC
Narain Karthikeyan and Karun Chandhok reunited for RoC
25.11.2012- Race, Pedro de la Rosa (ESP) HRT Formula 1 Team F112 and Heikki Kovalainen (FIN) Caterham F1 Team CT01
25.11.2012- Race, Narain Karthikeyan (IND) HRT Formula 1 Team F112 and Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W03
25.11.2012- Race, Pedro de la Rosa (ESP) HRT Formula 1 Team F112 and Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB8
25.11.2012- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB8 and Narain Karthikeyan (IND) HRT Formula 1 Team F112
25.11.2012- Race, Pedro de la Rosa (ESP) HRT Formula 1 Team F112 leads Charles Pic (FRA) Marussia F1 Team MR01
25.11.2012- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB8 and Narain Karthikeyan (IND) HRT Formula 1 Team F112
25.11.2012- Pedro de la Rosa (ESP) HRT Formula 1 Team F112 and Sergio Perez (MEX) Sauber F1 Team C31
25.11.2012- Charlie Whiting (GBR), Race director and safety delegate and Narain Karthikeyan (IND) HRT Formula 1 Team F112
24.11.2012- Qualifying, Narain Karthikeyan (IND) HRT Formula 1 Team F112 and Timo Glock (GER) Marussia F1 Team MR01
24.11.2012- Qualifying, Pedro de la Rosa (ESP) HRT Formula 1 Team F112
24.11.2012- Qualifying, Narain Karthikeyan (IND) HRT Formula 1 Team F112
24.11.2012- Free Practice 3, Pedro de la Rosa (ESP) HRT Formula 1 Team F112
24.11.2012- Free Practice 3, Narain Karthikeyan (IND) HRT Formula 1 Team F112
24.11.2012- Free Practice 3, Pedro de la Rosa (ESP) HRT Formula 1 Team F112
24.11.2012- Free Practice 3, Pedro de la Rosa (ESP) HRT Formula 1 Team F112

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