Timo Glock has described his maiden rostrum finish in Formula 1 in the Hungarian Grand Prix this weekend as 'an incredible feeling' – after producing the drive of his fledgling career in the top flight to come home in second place in Budapest.
The young German had already given firm signal of his intent by featuring well up inside the top six throughout both free practice and qualifying around the Hungaroring, going on to line up a career-best fifth on the grid.
He then made a good start to slot into fourth place behind eventual race-winner Heikki Kovalainen, and he would remain between five-to-ten seconds adrift of the Finn race-long, pulling comfortably away from the pursuing Robert Kubica, Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen and withstanding considerable late-race pressure from the latter to seal his podium glory.
“What an incredible feeling!” enthused the 26-year-old reigning GP2 Series Champion, who only two weeks ago had suffered his second heavy accident of the season in front of his home fans at Hockenheim.
“I couldn't believe it when I saw Felipe [Massa's] engine go and I was P2. To get such a good result in my first year is fantastic, so a huge 'thank you' to all the team, including the engineers, mechanics and everyone at the factory.
“I knew from qualifying that we had good speed, and we've looked strong all weekend. Today I made a good start and gained a place into the first corner. I had a really good car, and everything went perfectly until the last stint on the soft tyres.
“I was struggling a lot and soon I had Kimi behind me, but I knew from last year in GP2, when I was stuck in the midfield in a really good car, how hard it is to pass here – so when I saw him in the mirrors I knew I couldn't afford any mistakes.
“This result more than makes up for Hockenheim, and now we must keep picking up regular points until the end of the season.”
Toyota team-mate Jarno Trulli had a less straightforward afternoon around the tight and twisty circuit, paying the price for a lowlier grid position than that of Glock, and being stuck behind slower cars race-long on his way to seventh spot at the chequered flag.
“This is a very good result for us,” the experienced Italian acknowledged, “and to pick up ten points is great for the constructors' championship. I'm glad for Timo, because he has had a very good weekend and fully deserves this result.
“This could have been better for me too, despite my problems in qualifying. I was quick today, but I couldn't push because I only had one lap that was clear of traffic the whole afternoon. I gained one position early on, but overtaking is practically impossible here.
“Around the second stops I was also stuck behind Lewis [Hamilton], holding me up further. Still, I'm delighted that we are showing such strong form and I just hope we can carry on in good shape and with such good results.”