Stephane Sarrazin (Racing Engineering)
"I passed Gene so i won't get to crash with him".
Sarrazin values his performance in Zolder, a trophy that he could not take at home as he was penalised with 25 seconds. Stephane Sarrazin debuted in F-1 in 1999 with Minardi. He was also the test driver for Prost Grand Prix and Panasonic Toyota Racing. Now he's got a new appointment with the World Series in Magny Cours, the next 18th of May. This is his home circuit. But we'd better have a look at the RenaultF1 test driver, Franck Montagny.
How are things going with your team Racing Engineering?
"Really good, I'm very happy. I think that Racing Engineering is the best team to compete with. At the moment Gabord Competicion is in the first position, but I hope that my team will be the one that wins the championship. Although it will be very difficult because there are so many good drivers in the World Series."
Your pass through the Formula 3 was marked with some little budget problems when you had to raise money for the races. Do you still find problems of this sort in the Superfund World Series by Nissan?
"Not at all. I've never seen problems of this sort in this championship. In comparison to the World Series, competing in the Formula 3 is a little bit more expensive. But this is a subject my manager knows better, actually I don't handle the budget. The only thing I know is that in this championship in which I'm competing, where the costs are really capped, and this is better for the drivers."
What is your opinion about new Michelin S510 Tyres that they use in the World Series?
"I think that they are much better for the drivers. The Michelin S510 are faster, and for my experience in the Formula 1, I can say that they are better."
Apart from competing, what do you do on your spare time?
"Mostly I do exercise. I do jogging, body training and I do a bit of cycling so I can be fitted for the races. I have a personal trainer that helps me to be in shape. But I do all this to be in my best when the time of the race comes. Apart from the World Series I compete in others championships. Recently I got a victory in one of these competitions."
What do you think about the decision that was taken after the Race 1 in Zolder? That made you go from the first to the last position?
"I was very unhappy about this. I don't think is normal. Marc Gene hit the brakes and I had to overtake him so I won't get to crash with him. What I did, I did it for my safety. I was faster than he was, and to my knowledge, I think that we won that race."
But, what were you thinking when you passed Gene before the safety car entered the pits?
"As I said, I wasn't thinking I was making an infraction. When Gene and me were about to reach the line I couldn't see how much was left to get through and the infraction was produced only for about ten centimetres. But I was always thinking I was doing the right thing."
Going to another subject, could you tell us about the Stephane Sarrazin Driving School? Is it yours?
"Is my father's school. It has my name but I just go there only a few times. I just go rarely to practice."
Do you think that in your school there is any potential driver that some day will be competing with you in the Superfund World Series by Nissan?
"Our school is a school to prepare drivers for rally racing. Is a Rally school more than track, but you never know what could happen in the future."
Which are the races you remember the most?
"I have really good memories of my first Grand Prix of Formula 1 in Brazil with the Minardi Team. I also remember a lot my victory in Budapest in the Formula 3000. And Of course, my last race for the World Series that I won in Zolder."
From your experience in Formula 1, could you tell us which advantages do you find in the World Series that you wont find in the Formula 1?
"The World Series is a great championship. Every year gets better. Is very competitive because all the cars are the same, and that is really important for the drivers. Further more, competing in the Formula 1 is really hard for the drivers because there is not so many vacancies."