26 July 2011
Drivers reflect on Nurburgring fortunes
His endeavours took Coloni from near the bottom with just a single point in the team championship before the weekend to 7th place with 16pts going to Hungary, demonstrating just how much difference the right driver can make to a GP2 team.
"Until now for them the season wasn't so great," agreed Filippi. "Obviously they were very unlucky when [Davide] Rigon was injured, and [Kevin] Ceccon did a great job but obviously he is a rookie, and once they had a chance to show how they are they did everything perfectly!
"The atmosphere we had before the race was really amazing," he enthused. "All the mechanics were motivated, everybody really wanted a great performance, and I was really able to see in their eyes how much they wanted this victory."
Describing his run to third place in the rain-hit Sunday sprint race, Filippi said: "I'm very glad that we made a perfect strategy, and we were the fastest car on the track: we couldn't overtake because there was only one dry line, but I'm very pleased: the strategy was perfect, and we pitted at exactly the right time."
In stark contrast to Fillipi, Jules Bianchi - who built on his breakthrough success at Silverstone with 10pts this weekend - was visibly downcast on the sprint race podium and seemed to be fixating on the mistake he made on the penultimate lap of that race that cost him the win, which went to Grosjean instead.
"I pushed a bit, I made a mistake in the second last lap at the chicane, and Romain overtook me," he said. "I'm very disappointed because without the mistake I would have won for sure, because it was not possible to overtake.
"It was my mistake today, and that's it: I'm really sorry about that ... I'm just quite disappointed."
Grosjean had been resigned to second place after an early overtaking move on the Lotus ART after the pit stops to switch to slicks had come to nothing.
"[After the pitstops] Jules did a small mistake: I tried to overtake him once but there is only one line so it is quite difficult. Then he did a mistake one lap to the end and I could go for the win: it was great, and the team did a very good job too!" he said. "We are happy with this win, which is important."
Grosjean was no fan of the changing conditions on Sunday, saying that it was "not so much fun, to be honest - particularly when you are second.
"It was a very difficult race," he admitted. "The conditions were very, very tough, nobody had grip so you could see the cars sliding everywhere. It was very difficult, and then my engineer told me it should be raining in ten minutes, so I was keeping the tyres alive - and the rain never came!
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