Monteiro recalls first podium

Tiago Monteiro makes the short trip from Montreal to Indianapolis for the tenth round of the 2006 F1 season at the legendary Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Having finished all but one race so far this season at the wheel of his Midland F1 car, ...

Tiago Monteiro makes the short trip from Montreal to Indianapolis for the tenth round of the 2006 F1 season at the legendary Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Having finished all but one race so far this season at the wheel of his Midland F1 car, Monteiro is looking forward to the second half of the season.

Tiago Monteiro.
Photo by Eric Gilbert.

"I can't believe a whole year has passed since we were last at Indianapolis. Last year's race was a great result for me despite all the other controversy - the first podium of my F1 career. I remember now driving on the parade lap not even knowing how many drivers would start the race - all I knew was that I had to get my car to seventeenth on the grid and then take it from there."

"After the Michelin cars pulled off I found myself third behind Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello. Despite all the controversy it was such an amazing experience and very important to me to be so high in the order in my first season of F1."

"It almost went pear-shaped when the team told me to ease off and not push too hard as I was hearing strange noises from my engine and thought I would never made it - I thought that was it. Fortunately it held on and I nursed the car home to get on the podium and taste the champagne."

"By the time I had finished on the podium Jorge Sampaio, the Portuguese President had already sent me a message of congratulations. In that day I received no less than 4,234 emails, 540 SMS and as many phone calls as my answer machine could take - I was the first ever Portuguese driver to get on an F1 podium - what a day. I would love nothing else more than to experience it again."

"Anyway, it's a year on and conditions should be different so let's be realistic. Despite the problem at the start of the Canadian Grand Prix I made it to the finish for the eighth time this season which was a relief."

"Only Fernando Alonso has finished more races than me this season and I am with Michael Schumacher having finished eight out of nine rounds. My goal is to match my record from last season when I finished eighteen out of nineteen races."

"Despite the US Grand Prix being just a few days after the Canadian race, I managed to visit some friends from my days in Champcar. Indianapolis is not going to be easy for our team. We will have to work hard to find a good balance and if we do, hopefully we can get a good result."

-dca-

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Michael Schumacher , Rubens Barrichello , Fernando Alonso , Tiago Monteiro , Eric Gilbert