Daniil Kvyat says that he has no problem being the centre of attention at this weekend's Russian Grand Prix as it usually means that he is doing well.
The home hero carries Russian hopes into Sochi, hoping for a better race than he had twelve months ago, but confident that the Red Bull package can make him a threat for points.
While he does not describe the unique street circuit, based around the Black Sea resort's Winter Olympic park, as an instant F1 thrill-ride, Kvyat admits that it has a personal appeal.
“I would describe it as a classic 'modern-style' track, but what's really important is that there is quite a lot of room for overtaking, which usually makes for good racing,” he explained, “It does have some quite interesting, quite unusual sections [but] it probably doesn't really have a stand-out, balls-out, corner. Having said that, it's my home race and I enjoy it a lot. The atmosphere last year was fantastic - there were so many fans giving me support – so it really feels awesome to be there.”
Kvyat, who reckons he has already given 'hundreds' of interviews about his home race, admits that the media requirements and public appearances that lie ahead will be something of a distraction, but insists that it is a welcome one.
“In a way it's true, sometimes you do get some strong attention, but that's part of the game and what you have to take from it is that the attention comes from the fact that perhaps you have been doing something good, which is a positive,” he reasoned, “You have to understand that the fans are coming out to support you and that is something quite special – I'm happy to have the attention, it gives you a bit of a lift.”
The youngster could have done with a lift last time out in Japan, after a qualifying crash went a long way to denying him a points finish on race day. He finished 13th at Suzuka, one place better than he managed with Toro Rosso at last year's inaugural Russian Grand Prix, where the race didn't work out after a strong fifth-placed qualifying effort.
“Qualifying was great but the race was just... how can I say this... well, it was crap,” he reflected, “We had problems with fuel consumption during the race and it was just a really disappointing day, so I'm hoping we will be able to give the fans there something more to cheer about this year.”