GP2

Valencia SC: Race one press conference

GP2 Series: Vitaly, I guess the first thing to ask is what were you thinking when you came around the last turn and saw Giorgio off to the side? Vitaly Petrov: Two corners before my engineer said on the radio that Giorgio has a problem with fuel...

GP2 Series: Vitaly, I guess the first thing to ask is what were you thinking when you came around the last turn and saw Giorgio off to the side?

Vitaly Petrov: Two corners before my engineer said on the radio that Giorgio has a problem with fuel so push, push, and I was down a little bit because I was saving a little bit, but then I understood he had problems and I pushed again and could overtake him.

GP2 Series: You were pushing very hard today, and you were one of the few guys who was on the same pace as Giorgio: how was it in the car?

Vitaly: Yeah, in the beginning I was pushing really hard because I touched a little bit Giorgio, and Grosjean was quick in the first bit, but after 2 or 3 laps I was already behind Giorgio and maybe I could find, but then I had to go to the box, and after the box maybe the car wasn't perfect to drive, because there was too much understeer already which killed the tyres.

GP2 Series: It looked like you had a great start...

Vitaly: Yeah, a great start, like Giorgio: Giorgio made a good start, and me too.

GP2 Series: And then you had Maldonado behind you: was that something you were worried about?

Vitaly: No, because I had the barge board from the team to show me everything, and I was driving safe so not to kill the tyres, and I wasn't like 200% on the limit.

GP2 Series: I guess it's probably not the way you want to win, but what does it mean for you to win here?

Vitaly: For my team of course it's important, because they did a big job to come here, and we did the GT race and then analysed with the simulator before we come here, so I am happy and can say a big thank you, because they did a good job to prepare for it.

GP2 Series: And I guess it makes up a little for the bad luck you've had earlier this year?

Vitaly: Yeah, I've had some problems and we've found some problems with the brakes, and we didn't know what happened: before Budapest we changed completely the brake system and I came back again to the same way we were in the beginning. After a few race since Monaco we were losing too much.

GP2 Series: You start from 8th tomorrow, and it's been quite hard for people to overtake today: what are your thoughts on that for tomorrow?

Vitaly: I t's hard: everything I think will be at the start, and then we'll see. If we find a good set up for tomorrow so we can be fast on the straights we will see.

GP2 Series: Pastor, second today with a race that was probably the most difficult of the top guys for you: how did you see it?

Pastor Maldonado: Today was good: I lost my place at the start because of the system of the grid, because the corner going to the right I lost a position to Petrov, and then after I had a good pace, and the circuit is unique. After the pit the car changed a lot and was really quick so I tried to catch Grosjean, and I was behind him from two laps and was just looking for a place to overtake him, because I was so much quicker than him. I saw at the last corner he brakes really early so I decided to try there, and the first time I tried it was good and a very clean passing but then he re-passed me at the second corner: I didn't expect that, but I tried to re-pass him at the same point because maybe he was convinced that I wouldn't try. The distance was not so bad and it was good: I touched him a little bit because he closed the door, but that's normal because it's a race.

GP2 Series: Were you surprised at all by that?

Pastor: No, because before I saw him with a lot of oversteer, and my car after the pitstop was incredible, very constant, and like in Budapest I'm very constant, very quick at the end of the race. So I tried to wait some laps so he would destroy more his rear tyres, and mine were still like new, and I tried to overtake him in safe point because the circuit itself is not so safe because the barriers are very close, but I decided there because I thought it's safe: if I miss the overtake then I just go a little bit long and then back to the straight.

GP2 Series: As one of the few guys to actually overtake someone here?

Pastor: It's very difficult, because it's a city circuit and because of the grip: the circuit is not very grippy, the tarmac especially when you go out of the line, and when you try to overtake it's very slippery, so it's very difficult. I tried to overtake him because I saw the position and I wanted to be on the podium, for the points, and for sure I wanted to have the quickest lap in the race. After I overtook him I tried to push, and Pantano was a little quicker than me but not so much, but after the end he lost because of the fuel: I think it's not lucky, because my team looked very well at issue of the fuel and we put more fuel in for the race, and we finished it.

GP2 Series: Romain, third today after a quite tough race for you: how was it from inside the car?

Romain Grosjean: It was a fairly long race, and it's good to be back on the podium and score points, and especially because Giorgio didn't score any, so it's good for the championship. We've had a couple of difficult weekends, so it's good to be back on the podium. Today I'm quite happy but we can still make an improvement, work hard and see what we can do for the car tomorrow.

GP2 Series: You were having quite a tough fight with Maldonado: what was happening there?

Romain: Yeah, I was fast so he couldn't overtake me, but over the closing laps we had a brake problem and it was getting difficult: he overtook me once and I could get back past him at the next corner, but he tried again the next lap and I had to open so we didn't crash. He touched a bit my car and okay, that's racing: I have to be a bit quicker so he can't overtake me.

GP2 Series: After some disappointments in the last few races though, I guess it's a big relief to get back up on the podium and taste some champagne?

Romain: Yeah exactly: it was some good points, back on the podium and scored some good points, and the performance was always here but we've had some bad luck, so it's good for the team, it's good for everybody, and especially for me, so now we'll just focus on tomorrow and that's all we can do.

GP2 Series: It looks like it's quite hard to overtake here: what do you think about that for tomorrow?

Romain: Yeah, I thought it would be easier to overtake but obviously it's quite hard: we just have to be faster than everyone else, because then it's very easy to overtake everyone!

-credit: gp2series.com

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About this article
Series GP2
Drivers Pastor Maldonado , Vitaly Petrov , Romain Grosjean