European GP: Virgin Racing preview

Formula 1 returns to Europe this weekend for Round 9 of the FIA Formula 1 World Championship - the European Grand Prix in Valencia, Spain. This is the second of two Spanish races on the 2010 calendar and the first of a six race stint that ...

Formula 1 returns to Europe this weekend for Round 9 of the FIA Formula 1 World Championship - the European Grand Prix in Valencia, Spain. This is the second of two Spanish races on the 2010 calendar and the first of a six race stint that constitutes the second European leg of the Championship.

The European Grand Prix takes place at the Valencia Street Circuit and uses the harbour area of downtown Valencia and the facilities created for the 2007 America's Cup. It is a race that is still relatively in its infancy as this is only the third time that the Grand Prix has been staged there.

Like most street circuits, the 5.419km track is relatively narrow compared to permanent race tracks and the fast flowing nature of the circuit, coupled with the close proximity of the barriers, makes this an interesting and challenging one for drivers and their teams.

Timo Glock, Race Driver #24
"I'm really looking forward to Valencia this weekend. It's a track I quite enjoy and I got the fastest lap here last year, so I have only good things to say about it. It's a circuit where you really have to keep your eye on the ball -- a bit like Monaco - because the fast straights together with the barriers mean that you can easily get caught out. It can be very hot here but this year the race is slightly earlier and so the temperature should be cooler. Canada was a tough weekend in terms of setting the car up and managing the tyres and I hope we can have a smoother ride of it this weekend. As always our objective is to challenge our immediate competition to be the best of the new teams."

Lucas di Grassi, Race Driver #25
"It's great to be back in Europe again - and to be back in Spain where the fans are all very supportive. I've raced here in GP2 before but I'm really looking forward to my first time out here in an F1 car. I've done some work in the simulator to prepare and we have some new parts which should help us in terms of setting the car up. Montreal was a tough race for us but we got there in the end. I hope we have fewer difficulties this time round and we can get the weekend off to a better start and fight for the position of best of the new teams at the end of it."

John Booth, Team Principal
"Despite enjoying our debut Canadian Grand Prix experience, it's good to be back on European soil where we can now establish a good rhythm for the next six races - and remain in the same time zone. Apart from the usual turnaround challenges following a long-haul race, we've actually found some time to draw breath since Canada and this has provided us with a good opportunity to reflect on the last few races and look to the period ahead. It's hard to believe that the mid-point of the season is almost upon us and of course we have our home race at Silverstone to look forward to in a couple of weeks. I think we are in good shape for part two of the European season and we hope to get things off to a good start in Valencia this weekend."

Nick Wirth, Technical Director
"Now that we are back in Europe, the whole team is gearing up for a big push forwards in performance, which starts in Valencia. We have been working very hard on the areas of the car's performance that we know we need to improve, and we will give a track debut to some mechanical performance parts that are the result of a long development programme. In all aspects of our research, both virtual and in R&D testing, it has looked a promising step, so we expect it to help the car's behaviour and improve our lap time. The aim for this race is to get experience of it ahead of the new aero package which comes at Silverstone. As ever, we'll also be focused on having a smooth and reliable weekend."

-source: virgin

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Timo Glock , Lucas di Grassi , John Booth
Teams Virgin Racing