Race One Press Conference: Hungary 04/08/2007 GP2 Series: Ladies and Gentlemen welcome to the Press Conference for Race One at Budapest. Joining us today in third place Andi Zuber from iSport International, who's busy with his phone, in second...
Race One Press Conference: Hungary
GP2 Series: Ladies and Gentlemen welcome to the Press Conference for Race One at Budapest. Joining us today in third place Andi Zuber from iSport International, who's busy with his phone, in second place Kazuki Nakajima from Dams and race winner Adam Carroll from FMS International.
Adam, you've come back to the series, you've had a Sunday win, you've now had a Saturday win. How satisfying is it to return to the series?
Adam Carroll: It's good, it's very, very good. The first weekend was just very tough coming back because it'd been over ten months since I'd been in the GP2 car, and you get a little bit soft driving DTM with power assisted steering, so it was quite hard to come back. Obviously Silverstone was just a great turnaround and the car was very, very good. We're still pushing really hard and trying to develop the car because we didn't get to test in the summer and things like that. At Nurburgring it didn't quite work out for us there, we didn't quite go our way with the setup and things. We came here with a different approach and even from yesterday to today. First part of the race it took me a little bit of time to get into and, get used to the car and things like that. Then the second half of the race it was pretty good, but the guys just called such a good pitstop, it was fantastic.
GP2 Series: Talk me through the start of the race, from your start and then it looked like it was almost impossible to get by anybody in the opening laps of the race.
Adam: Yeah I really wasn't that quick at the start, I was just going around getting a feeling for the car again and making sure I wasn't going to do anything stupid and push too hard and find out the car wasn't quite going to do that, or it was. So I just stayed where I was and tried to keep close to the guys in front, not make any mistakes. Andi was having a good fight with Maldonado and then he made a mistake and I got past him, and then he went off and left me in free air really to go round and keep pushing as hard as I could and keep consistent.
GP2 Series: And obviously then Luca had his big accident at the front and brought out the safety cars. As you say it was a very good call to come in at that time, but did you expect to come out in first?
Adam: I didn't know where I was. I knew I was in first when I was going around. I just wait for them to call me. They called me in and they changed four tyres in six seconds. We changed four and beat the two guys out in front of us and they only changed two so the guys were absolutely right on the money. I think the F1 guys would have been proud of that. We literally made the lights by about two tenths, Herbie [Blash] said to me after the race, so it was quite close.
GP2 Series: And obviously you came back out right infront of Chandhok. How close was it between the two of you when you came out of the pitlane?
Adam: It was pretty close. He came right along side me, we were right side by side coming into the first corner and I just wasn't going to let him past. He's sensible anyway and realised I was in the lead and the safety car was for me, so we did the safety car laps and there were still 26 laps left after that, it was still quite a long time.
GP2 Series: Yeah as you say it was basically another race entirely. You had a lot of pressure all the way through. How hard was it to stay ahead of Kazuki?
Adam: Yeah it was hard because the first few laps we were still just feeling the tyres and the balance and it was better on the second set of tyres. I'd already done nearly ten laps on the first set from qualifying so they were knackered and the second set were much better and when the car started to get into it I could keep that pace and that was pretty much it, I couldn't really go any faster. He was very, very quick but I knew if I didn't make any mistakes then it was going to be hard to get past.
GP2 Series: So basically 26 qualifying laps?
Adam: Near enough yeah. It felt like 126. It just goes on forever. It's a hard circuit, it really is. It's just corner after corner, and cos of the bumps its very, very easy to make a mistake and spin around. Everybody I think has the same thing so it is quite difficult.
GP2 Series: How important is getting this second win for you and also for the team?
Adam: It's very important. We push extremely hard and we have never had much chance to develop the car together. That makes it extremely hard as half an hour isn't exactly long and when the car is good and you hit the track everything is so much easier for the weekend. But when you still have a bit of work to do then it is hard. But we made the right call with the set up and hopefully now it gives us a better idea for circuits like this. We know at Silverstone we had a very good set up and things like that so, we're learning as we go along and hopefully now we can have a bit more consistency there.
GP2 Series: Congratulations today, fantastic job.
Adam: Thank you
GP2 Series: Kazuki, brilliant job yet again today. You've had four third places and you were looking to move up a step, but i suspect you're maybe a little bit disappointed you didn't make the extra step.
Kazuki Nakajima: Yes, that's true, but still for me I didn't actually expect to be on the podium from eighth place so, yeah the second place is a really good result for me and for the team and it's incredible to score five podiums in a row. You have to say at one point that if I though I could have won the race, if I didn't have a slow car in front of me during the safety car, but yeah its really disappointing but still I'm quite happy with second place.
GP2 Series: You've yet again come in early, got some tyres, gone out in clear air and set fastest lap and basically dictated the terms of the race. Why is it that you're able to get away with it race after race?
Kazuki: Uh... for us it's a little bit different. Starting from eighth place to make an early pitstop and have clean air is the fastest way I think. The only problem here was the slow car because the track is short and its easy to catch a slow car, but fortunately I could overtake the guy in one lap and after I was just before the safety car catching the car in front but still we could gain a lot of time. Because of the early pitstop it was a bit difficult for the end of the race but I think its the same for everybody and I think we have a good set up for the race and that's allowed me to do a good strategy like that, and many thanks to the team to think about that.
GP2 Series: Do you think you could have had the race win if it hadn't been for the safety car?
Kazuki: Yeah, but its just a matter of timing and everything, so I'm still happy with second place and hopefully if I could win some races in the rest of the season it will be good enough.
GP2 Series: Obviously its an unusual weekend for you here, you're a reserve driver for Toyota in the big paddock and also your father was here to see you. Is it the first time he's been here to see you in GP2?
Kazuki: Yes, for the GP2, or in Europe but actually I haven't spoken to him yet. I think I will speak to him later. It didn't make any difference. For the reserve driver it was a little bit busier to make a seat fitting and meeting on Thursday, but yeah still I could be on the podium in the GP2 race. It was really important to focus on the race in GP2 for me, so it worked well.
GP2 Series: You managed to get through a few guys on the track as well. Do you think that's possible again tomorrow when there's no pitstops?
Kazuki: I hope so. This track is really difficult to overtake but still there is some chance, especially for the beginning of the race I still think there is some chance. Tomorrow I think its good to take some risks and score the points.
GP2 Series: Well done and congratulations once again.
Andi, great job today. You were phenomenally fast for most of the race but only third. I guess you're probably going to be slightly disappointed with that.
Andi Zuber: No, I mean considering I had a very bad start, I had too much wheelspin, and I was P5 after the start so at this moment I knew I had to work very hard and I then was fighting against Maldonado which was very dirty what he did once in the corner. He braked middle of the corner and I nearly crashed in him, so that's not fair. But in the end, one lap after, I overtook him and then , yeah I just tried to push very hard and the car was good all the time and a really good pitstop. The shame was just the safety car came along so we lost one or two places more, but it was a good race.
GP2 Series: What happened at the start?
Andi: I just took too much wheelspin. That's it.
GP2 Series: Then after that, as you said, you had a big fight with Maldonado. It did seem that it wasn't exactly the cleanest battle that you had. You did manage to get past him and have a kink to the right, was there a problem or were you just letting him know that you were there?
Andi: No I just showed him "don't do it again" because this is dirty and accidents can happen so i just said "I am here now so just back off."
GP2 Series: The other time that we saw you waving from the car was after the safety car when Garcia came in front of you. Was there a problem there?
Andi: Yeah. I thought he overtook me under the safety car so I just gave him a little wave. But anyway I overtook him after.
GP2 Series: Nevertheless you managed to overtake a lot of guys at a circuit where they say that' almost impossible. That must give you a lot of satisfaction.
Andi: Yeah, I mean the car was really good and iSport is doing just a great job and I wasn't expecting that I could catch these guys in front of me, but I did and its a shame that my front left tyre was really in the end, was really, really... um, I don't want to say fucked...
GP2 Series: I think you just did.
Andi: OK, finished, so it was difficult to catch one of these guys in front of me. I just waited for a mistake, but yeah third place was good.
GP2 Series: Did you think it was anything you could do with Kazuki. His tyres seemed pretty shot at the end of the race?
Andi: I think once he made a mistake but he was on the inside, that was the only time when I was really close, but that was it.
GP2 Series: Thanks very much and congratulations.
Questions from the floor:
Q: Adam, you just said that you came back to GP2 after a long time, so did you expect to win in this period of time? What were expectations when you came back to GP2?
Adam: I knew it would be hard the first weekend, but once I got back into it then why not? The guys won races last year with Giorgio, so of course I don't come here to not win races, and when everything works out and we get the car in a good place then we can, and hopefully we'll do more of that as the season goes on.
GP2 Series: Obviously you didn't get any wins last year: how much do these wins get the monkey off your back and allow people to see what you can do?
Adam: It's a bloody big monkey: it's a gorilla! I obviously did what I could but we just couldn't win a race, it was too hard: the year before I won three, and the consistency wasn't quite there but everytime we had a good car I won a race, so this year is just the same thing really. We are working hard together to make the car better so we can run at the front, and we haven't had any testing or anything so last weekend and this weekend have been a test session for us, and it just worked out quite well for us and the car was quite good for a long time in the race. Hopefully now we're in the right direction and we can go on like this.
Q: Andi,you just said that you had too much wheel spin at the start, but can I ask did you sit together before the race and had a proper talk to avoid any problems at the start?
Andi: That's a shit question! No, we just .. of course we spoke together, and we said everybody start straight and then we will see who gets the better start, but obviously it wasn't Timo I had to watch, it was the guys behind me!
-credit: gp2 series