Brazilian GP winners' press conference

JV Oh it feels great mostly after Melbourne where we had been so strong and we couldn't even go any further than the first lap and it looked like it was going to be the same thing here, so it's a good thing there was a red flag. I'm...

JV Oh it feels great mostly after Melbourne where we had been so strong and we couldn't even go any further than the first lap and it looked like it was going to be the same thing here, so it's a good thing there was a red flag. I'm not sure why there was a red flag but then after that the car was very strong. We didn't have enough downforce for the slow corners but we were pretty good down the straight so it balanced out. The car was really strong until the second pit stop and then somehow the tyres had less grip. I don't know why but the car was quick enough to stay in front.

Q What happened on that first start, can you tell us some more about that?

JV Yeah, it was a little bit more slippery on the outside and I didn't want to give in to Michael. That's about it, so I went into the corner a little bit too fast.

Q Now on the second start Michael beat you to the first corner again, but then you seemed to be very successful getting back to him?

JV Yeah, we could see from the trap speed this morning that they were a little bit slower down the straight and we took the start with new tyres, so I knew that on the first two laps if he got in front of me I would have a good chance to get by him.

Q Towards the end of the end of the race after your second pit stop, were you aware that Gerhard was catching you?

JV Yeah, most definitely, he was a little bit too fast towards the end and he was catching up pretty hard so it was tough to keep the gap.

Q Gerhard, we last saw you on the podium at the British grand prix last year so you must be delighted to be here today?

GB Well yeah. It was time again to come back here.

Q Now you were catching Jacques towards the end. Did you think that you could actually get up to him and maybe make an attempt to pass him?

GB Well yes, there was a stage where I think I could get to him but I know how difficult it would be to pass him because he's quite quick on the straight but I still drive very hard because I thought if I can be the last three or four laps under his gearbox maybe by mistake or by overlapping another car maybe I could have a chance but unfortunately it was quite difficult to overlap some backmarkers. Damon was quite difficult to overtake and two other ones. I saw Jacques lost a bit and I lost the same so I just couldn't do it. I had the same problem as Jacques on the second part of the race, with the second set of tyres suddenly in the middle of the part the tyre lost grip and I was struggling to do good lap times.

Q You qualified third yesterday and finished second today does this mean Benetton is back on track?

GB Well I think it's a bit like we show in the winter testing. After the first race of course everybody thought we maybe went underweight in the winter but we didn't. We just lost the first race by some mistakes in the setup on the Friday and Saturday and that's it. It's very easy at the moment to, if you lose a little bit away, you are not with the first three and that's it.

Q Olivier, you won the Monaco grand prix last year but more importantly this is the first podium appearance for the Prost team and Bridgestone tyres so it's a great result for you and your team.

OP Yes, I'm very happy because I make a very big risk for strategy - just one stop but I see the Bridgestone tyres, the wear is very, very nice and very easy to one stop. I started very good. It was very easy to follow Jean and Michael Schumacher with one stop and after stop it is very easy to control because it's never traffic and it's very easy to control the laps. I'm very happy for the team, and Bridgestone also, because for the first year it's a very good job.

--- David Goodwin

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Michael Schumacher
Teams Benetton