Rubens Barrichello says he is keen to make amends for the disappointment of his 300th GP in Belgium as the curtain comes down on the European leg of the F1 season this weekend at Monza.
The Brazilian 'celebrated' his landmark race with a disappointing retirement on the opening lap at Spa after he lost control of his Williams on the run to the Bus Stop in wet conditions and collided with the Ferrari of Fernando Alonso – ending his race on the spot.
Eager to put that disappointment behind him, Barrichello now returns to the scene of one of his two F1 victories last season and is keen to maintain the kind of form that means Monza is currently the best track, results wise, of his career.
“Three wins and two podiums wins at the Autodromo Nazionale make it statistically my best track,” he said, “but never mind the numbers, it is a circuit I love and I always travel to Italy with affection and excitement.
“My positive record at the track and the work we have done to prepare for both the downforce and kerb requirements means that I am full of optimism. It was great to celebrate my 300th Grand Prix in Spa, but the race didn't go to plan. We will pick up our momentum again in Monza.”
Team-mate Nico Hulkenberg has only competed at the famous Monza circuit on one occasion during his career to date and the German said he was prepared to treat the venue with 'respect' when he appears on track in an F1 car for the first time.
“I have only raced once at Monza in last season's GP2 Championship, but I immediately enjoyed the challenge of its high speed nature and one of the races ended for me in a podium,” he said. “So I am approaching next weekend with a degree of respect that such a circuit demands, but equally I feel that it is time that both the car performance we are finding and my own work behind the wheel deserves to be reflected in better results more often, so my respect will be balanced with a really determined approach to the race weekend.
“Spa was frustrating as I worked hard to claim a good grid position and really want to ensure we convert our opportunities in Italy.”