GP2 Asia Series: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the press conference for Race 1 in Bahrain. Joining us Race winner and Championship leader Kamui Kobayashi, second place for his teammate Jerome d'Ambrosio and third place Edoardo Mortara at Arden...
GP2 Asia Series: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the press conference for Race 1 in Bahrain. Joining us Race winner and Championship leader Kamui Kobayashi, second place for his teammate Jerome d'Ambrosio and third place Edoardo Mortara at Arden International Motorsport. Starting with you, Kamui, congratulations are in order. You jumped from third to second at the start and then you managed to pass Nico Hulkenberg to take the lead of the race. You must be delighted?
Kamui Kobayashi: I think, it was a good race. The start was not perfect, but I managed to gain a position. After that, things were really good. It was not easy to overtake Nico. Before the straight, there is a corner where we need a lot of downforce, it's not easy to follow the car after that. That's why it took me so long to overtake him. The pace was really good. I tried to push and keep the pressure, avoid making mistakes and hope that maybe Nico makes one. The one time I really tried to pass him was the good one. It was a really great race for me.
GP2 Asia Series: Contrary to the other competitors, d'Ambrosio, Mortara and even Hulkenberg, you changed your two left tyres instead of the two rear ones. Did it have anything to do with the car setup?
Kamui: Not really. It's just that I don't like to change the rear tyres. That's why I always change the left tyres. There's no reason for this, not strategic. Maybe, normally I should change the rear tyres, but I always change the left ones. The feeling was ok, so maybe I was lucky.
GP2 Asia Series: You scored 11 points again today. It's a one-two result for Dams. Both you and your team are now leading the championship. What is at stake for you tomorrow?
Kamui: Tomorrow, we know we can still be fast again. It's a shorter race. It's not easy to overtake here. But I just have to stay on the track and when I have the chance to gain a position, I will try and do it. If I get some points, that's good. This is my goal, you know, to win the championship. So, for tomorrow, I want to avoid crashes and see if I can get more points.
GP2 Asia Series: Thank you Kamui. Jerome, what happened at the start because you took off pretty well and then you slowed down pushing you down to fourth place?
Jerome d'Ambrosio: I just made a mistake and the engine nearly stall... I lost two positions in the process. It was difficult after that because, like Kamui said, it's difficult here to overtake and it took me a couple of laps to overtake Edoardo and therefore, Kamui was already gone with Nico. There was a huge gap and it was difficult to close it. I pushed until the end, but yeah, that was a poor start.
GP2 Asia Series: Still, even if you missed your take off, you knew you had the machine to fight back, right?
Jerome: Nico looked quite fairly good until four laps after his pitstop. He was good. I had to push all the way through the race, but I was confident that with a good pace and if I managed to avoid making any mistake, I was very consistent, I knew that if I had a good outlap, I good gain an advantage, which I did.
GP2 Asia Series: Did you try to catch up with Kamui or did you think you were too far away so you prefered to secure second place?
Jerome: For the first couple of laps, I pushed really hard until I did my personal best which was nearly the same as Kamui's at the same time. So, at one point, I knew it was going to be difficult and let's just say that the last five laps I decided to be careful a little bit because the track is very demanding for the race and therefore the team told me on the radio "Watch out" and the gap was too big to come back. So I took care of the car and I took the result.
GP2 Asia Series: Thank you Jerome. Now you, Edoardo: you just made sure that people notice you are now racing in GP2 Asia. You've been really competitive since yesterday. A podium finish on your first GP2 outing must be very satisfying...
Edoardo Mortara: I have to say that I am really happy with the result of today and with our general performance since yesterday. We did pretty good practice and qualifications. We showed some speed and today I was quite worried with some particular things for me, especially the start with the hand clutch or the pitstop... But, yeah we did a really, really good job. At the start, I could pass Jerome and I was quite surprised because he moved a little bit and then stopped. I had to avoid him and got on the dirty part of the track. It could have resulted into a disaster, but it went well and then I could make the race. I was really struggling in the first laps. Then the balance of the car was not so good. The beginning was difficult, but then it was good again so I passed Nico in the pitstop. Arden and I have had the perfect weekend so far.
GP2 Asia Series: What are your expectations for tomorrow?
Edoardo My objectives are not to get results, but to finish the races and gain experience. I'm trying to get some mileage on the car. It's the first time that I am in this car and I want to understand it better. I'm still not 100% confident in it. So I need to get some mileage. I still have a lot to learn. So, firstly, I need to finish the race. I'm not thinking about getting onto the podium again tomorrow. I'm delighted for this third place and it's very encouraging, but I keep my head clear.