German GP: Renault driver preview

Comments from the Renault drivers ahead of the German Grand Prix Jarno Trulli -- race driver Q: Jarno, you finished the race at Silverstone but, once again, circumstances conspired against you. Do you think you can have a problem-free race in...

Comments from the Renault drivers ahead of the German Grand Prix

Jarno Trulli -- race driver

Q: Jarno, you finished the race at Silverstone but, once again, circumstances conspired against you. Do you think you can have a problem-free race in Hockenheim?

JT: Before every race, I am confident we can do a good a job. We have a strong package, and the essential thing now is to get everything right on Sunday. Circumstances obviously prevented that at Silverstone, but I am feeling good about the races ahead.

Q: From a driver's point of view, what have the modifications to the Hockenheim layout changed?

JT: The new circuit is completely different: there is no comparison between them. The old layout was all about low downforce and high speed, whereas we now have a medium downforce track. We also have a lot of tarmac run-offs now: they don't change our approach in terms of driving, but it makes our life safer. The drivers have been pushing a lot for these tarmac areas, and things are much better like this.

Q: And what will be the key factors in terms of set-up?

JT: The circuit now has just one long straight for overtaking, so I think we will need good straightline speed to be able to match our rivals and be battling with them. We know the car is strong through the corners, and on the exits of the slower sections, so I believe we are in good shape for the race.

Fernando Alonso -- race driver

Q: Fernando, you have never raced before on the new Hockenheim. How long does it take you to learn a new circuit?

FA: Not very long, to be honest. To get used to it perfectly, I think it will probably take me six or seven laps: I don't think it will be a disadvantage, especially as I have the extra time on Friday. I am not worried about it.

Q: Temperatures are often very high at Hockenheim. Will this suit the car and its Michelin tyres?

FA: You can never say so for sure. In theory, higher temperatures are better for our tyres, and in hot conditions like Barcelona and Malaysia, the car has worked very well. Our new aero package at Silverstone saw us gain some competitiveness, and we should have also some new parts for the engine in Germany. I think we have to be looking to finish on the podium.

Q: Hockenheim is a circuit where overtaking is possible: after the spectacle of Silverstone, do you think we can have as good a race again?

FA: I hope so! Silverstone was entertaining for the people who came to watch, and it is always good to put on a bit of a show: the spectators enjoy it, and so do the drivers. Things are very competitive at the front, but each team seems to be strong in different areas: I think we might well see a similar kind of race at Hockenheim.

Allan McNish -- test driver

Q: The last few Friday morning sessions have seen your running disrupted with some problems: has this had an impact on the effectiveness of your work?

AM: Our recent Friday sessions have certainly been compromised a little by technical problems. That is potentially a negative situation, because unlike in traditional private testing, you don't really have any time to sort out problems on a Friday morning without damaging your programme. In spite of the incidents at Silverstone, though, I think our work on the tyres helped significantly over the weekend, and that will continue to be the case at the forthcoming races.

Q: What are the keys to a good set-up at Hockenheim?

AM: Basically, the track is now similar to the majority of others: it has become a standard medium-downforce circuit, with a majority of low and medium speed corners. Traction and mechanical grip are now the key factors, as the track features four very low-speed sections and just two high-speed turns. The other important thing will be to work the tyres correctly. Conditions used to be very humid because of the overhanging trees, but the new layout means the level of humidity has dropped; temperature, though, still remains a critical factor for tyre performance.

-renault-

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Jarno Trulli , Allan McNish , Fernando Alonso