Pic, Filippi and Grosjean discuss the session
GP2 Series: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the press conference for today's qualifying session here at the Nurburgring: joining us today is the polesitter Charles Pic from Addax, in second place we have Luca Filippi from Coloni, and in third place we have Romain Grosjean from Dams. Charles, congratulations on your second pole position of the year, although you left it quite late in the session to claim it: how was it from your seat?
Charles Pic: Great! A great session: we made hard work to make this pole, because in Silverstone we were a little bit less competitive than usual, so we worked on it and it worked. I'm very happy with it, and congratulations to the team: now we have to do some more work for tomorrow because the race is more important than today!
GP2 Series: You were one of the few drivers to improve on the second set: how was the difference between the two sets for you today?
Charles: I had traffic on my first set, so the main difference was no traffic except on the last sector I had a little bit.
GP2 Series: Considering the conditions, how were the tyres today?
Charles: It was okay: when it's cold it's always a little bit harder to heat up the front, so the hardest I think was to be able to get the front and the rear together on your flying lap.
A great session: we made hard work to make this pole.
GP2 Series: What are your thoughts on the race tomorrow?
Charles: First I think we have to see the weather: we have to be clever, and there are many options as we don't know yet the weather, if it will be wet, dry, or both.
GP2 Series: Do you want to share those options in front of these guys?
Charles: I think on dry we will not have big degradation because temperatures are quite low, so we will have to work on the set up and driving to help the rear but it will not be a big issue. I think it will be risky if it is changing in the race, and it means we have to take the right strategy at the right moment: we are starting in pole, so this would be the worst! So I hope it will be completely dry or completely wet. We will see tomorrow.
GP2 Series: Luca, so near but so far I guess, but are you happy with your first qualifying session with your new team?
Luca Filippi: I'm very happy, because I think we were very fast since this morning and we made some changes for qualy, and everything went right. In my best laptime I didn't really do my best in sector one, so maybe I had a little margin but the first row is the best we could expect from this qualifying, and I'm very pleased for this team because they gave me a great car since the very first time I've driven it. Sometimes it can be difficult for a team to be sure about a set up if it's not too fast, but today they must be happy!
GP2 Series: It seems to be a track that you like, as you've done quite well here in the past: what is it about this place for you?
Luca: Actually, I don't like it! (laughs) Sorry about that for the German people! I like the part that goes down the hill, the left and right turn 5 and 6 is nice, the fast chicane is also nice, but I don't very slow corners so for me the first part is exactly the opposite of what I normally want from a race track! The fast part is maybe where I made a bit of a difference, because it is what I like. Also I have to say that it is very good to know that we have soft tyres because every time we are on the soft or the super soft tyres, like in Monaco, I feel very good: the softer the tyres are, the better the feeling I have! So I was happy about that, and in fact I can really manage the tyre degradation better.
GP2 Series: It seems you've got exactly what you need then: a track you don't like and soft tyres! So what is going to happen tomorrow?
Luca: It's hard to say: I think so far it looks like maybe it's us very close and the fourth one is not so near to us, it looks like anyway, so between us the start is going to be very important.
Obviously I hope it is going to be dry, because we don't need any strange weather or strange situations tomorrow. The start is going to be very important, but it's not so important the strategy, as he said, because maybe the degradation is not going to be so good. It's going to be a very nice fight: obviously I am happy to be at the top, and I think I have a good chance for tomorrow.
GP2 Series: Romain, congratulations on P3 today, although I suspect you were looking for a bit more: nevertheless are you happy with your job today?
Romain Grosjean: With my job, and the job the team did, yes: I'm very unhappy about Christian Vietoris's behaviour on track because we lost I would say five tenths in the last sector because of him on one of my fastest laps. I think we were three tenths in front, but what can you do: if a driver doesn't want to move out of the way when he's on a slow lap then there's nothing you can do about it. We will see: for sure we had the pace to do the pole position, we showed it in the free practice, so tomorrow is going to be an interesting race. It is going to be long, we don't know about the weather, we will see the tyre degradation and the behaviour of the car in the cold weather.
GP2 Series: You mentioned the traffic, and obviously a lot of other guys had trouble with it too: is there anything that can be done about it on a track like this?
Romain: There is trouble, and then there is stupid moves! I mean, when Charles did the pole I was on a slow lap and I moved inside at turn 5 so he could get in turn 6 without any problems. Christian saw me all the way along the straight, so he had full time to let me pass but I had to overtake him at the chicane: this is not fair, this is not normal, and all the drivers are complaining about traffic. In GP2 qualifying, okay, sometimes it can be a little bit disturbed by one tenth or something, but here it was five tenths and he was on a slow lap. But nevertheless, tomorrow is a different day.
GP2 Series: Christian is behind you tomorrow, so you should have this problem: these guys are in front of you, so what do you think will happen?
Romain: Hopefully we're going to win! Today was 2 points to take, tomorrow is 11: I think, looking for the championship, we have to take as many points as possible!
GP2 Series: Do you think the championship is wrapped up yet? (laughs)
Romain: (laughs) I have already told you, my personal goal is to win the GP2 title, so I will do everything I can to score every time a lot of points, and what is good is that the others are behind me, and that's best for me: as soon as there are drivers between me and the other contenders , it's fine.
by: GP2 Series