Monaco: Race one press conference

Monaco Race 1 Press Conference 05.23.08 Bruno, Pastor and Karun's thoughts after the feature race. GP2 Series: Bruno Senna, race winner at Monaco: how does that sound? Bruno Senna: That sounds pretty good: that sounds pretty surreal, ...

Race 1 Press Conference

Bruno, Pastor and Karun's thoughts after the feature race.

GP2 Series: Bruno Senna, race winner at Monaco: how does that sound?

Bruno Senna: That sounds pretty good: that sounds pretty surreal, actually! It's surreal in terms of you don't expect to be winning every race, but we came here and I was very confident on what I could do, the team did a great, great job since the start: we were spot on in testing, spot on in qualifying although unfortunately didn't get the pole, but we were just consistent and quick. We took the right decisions for the race, we took the right decisions for qualifying, and that's the teamwork that is bringing the results. Whereas in other races I didn't get the results we deserved on performance this time we did, and it feels like a real win because I won here, I was quickest here and I was consistent, so it's a good win.

GP2 Series: And of course you've done it in front of Maldonado, who is well known for being pretty amazing at this place: how hard was it to deal with a guy like that behind you for the whole race?

Bruno: Well to be honest with you, until there was the pile up I had a pretty comfortable gap to him, I pushed pretty hard to build a gap but not to ruin my tyres, because obviously tyres wear out a lot here, but I put a gap together and I was feeling pretty comfortable, but after the yellow flags and all the incidents my tyres were a bit worn out because I worked to build the gap. And obviously he's not slow, like you said, so I had to push hard to build the gap, and then I had bad tyres to finish the race, but the car was good and I was consistent enough to be quicker than him, or as quick as him, so even if he got close to me he would not be able to overtake: I would have a very wide car if he got close to me! But that wasn't necessary and I put a pretty good lap together in the end and then got fastest lap as well.

GP2 Series: You and Pastor were so much faster than anyone else during the whole race, and there was a huge gap behind the pair of you: how important is having raced here last year to allowing you to find that race-winning pace?

Bruno: It is great, and after last year when we had testing I was so comfortable when I sat in the car this time: I knew when to brake, I knew everything, and so I just chipped away at that. Obviously that helped me a lot: last year I was quick, I had third fastest lap of the race, and that was pretty close to Maldonado's lap although not close to whoever put on new tyres for the fastest lap! But that's how it works: I was feeling very comfortable, and I think I drove pretty well this weekend.

GP2 Series: Not much more than that: congratulations.

Bruno: Thank you.

GP2 Series: Pastor, great job to get second today: it looked like a pretty tough race from the outside, but how was it from your perspective?

Pastor Maldonado: It was good. At the beginning I wheel-spinned a lot at the start, so Senna was faster than me, and I tried to push but he was faster than me anyway. After the pitstop we were absolutely faster than him, and I caught him but it's very difficult to overtake here: I tried to do my best. But anyway it's good: good for the points, good to just be racing in Monaco, third race on the podium: it's all good, and I'm quite happy.

GP2 Series: In the early stages of the race you weren't able to stay with Bruno's pace, but eventually that levelled out and you even started to pull him in: why weren't you able to run like that all the time?

Pastor: I don't know exactly, but we had a lot of problems at the beginning because the set up was not so good, and when we changed to the new tyres the car changed completely and was much better, better and quicker.

GP2 Series: After the mess at Mirabeau you got very close to Bruno and could stay with him for the rest of the race: do you think there was any chance of getting by him?

Pastor: I tried to do my best, but it is difficult because he was slower than me, but not a lot, not enough for me to overtake him. There he was in front of me and maybe he got past 3 or 4 cars and I stayed in my place, so he won a lot of time there and I did maybe one or two laps behind the other cars, and after when I passed them I pushed and pushed and caught him, but it was too late, too late.

GP2 Series: The results today, considering some of the guys who didn't finish, makes a big change to the championship...

Pastor: The championship is still open: it's very early to have a look. I'm happy with the team, and I'm very strong this year, and unlucky in the beginning, but now we restart the championship.

GP2 Series: Karun, third today which is possibly unexpected for you: how did you see it?

Karun Chandhok: I was looking for fourth really, because in the first stint Valles was quite slow and that allowed the top three guys to take off, so I was just sitting there waiting for him to pit: as soon as he pitted I went a lot quicker straight away. Then I was stuck behind Grosjean: again he was slow and in traffic, and behind Tung, so the first two-thirds of the race was just frustrating and I had to be patient, sit in traffic, sit in traffic, sit in traffic. As soon as they got out of the way bang, I could do a good time and I kept doing that, and then after Tung got out of the way it was just me and Mike, and I was making 1.6, 1.7 seconds a lap on him: I was really catching him. Then I don't know what happened: Javi says that Mike braked early at the tunnel, but I have no idea because I didn't see anything: I came out of the tunnel and all I saw was Javi in the middle of the road and Mike sideways, so I had a really good laugh for the rest of the lap, all the way to the line! I have to say that fourth was what I was aiming for, but third is a nice little bonus: it's Monaco, got a podium, happy days.

GP2 Series: You made a good start but then were stuck in traffic: how hard is it to deal with that frustration?

Karun: Yeah, but my race was compromised a bit by qualifying yesterday: I lost four tenths really on what I could have done, so I should have been in the top three, and then you just sit there in traffic and your race is compromised by that. It's a tough race, Monaco: it's not physically demanding by mentally it's very, very tough and you have to really be on the ball for a long time, but the team did a fantastic job, the cars were brilliant, both Bruno and mine, and so it's well deserved for the team: we've had a lot of shit luck this year.

GP2 Series: And a 1-3 shows they're pretty on top of the new car...

Karun: Yeah, we're pretty on the ball. We've been quick everywhere: in Barcelona Bruno finished second and I would have easily had fourth if we didn't have to stack in the pitstop, Istanbul we were quick and I finished fourth there, so I think we've got pace.

GP2 Series: And tomorrow?

Karun: There are a lot of slower guys in front of us! But you can't pass so it's just going to be a race of patience, and wait and see what happens: just sit and wait, hopefully get off the line well, and obviously starting tomorrow where I started today in P6 worked well: I got grandad [Pantano] off the line today, so we'll see what happens tomorrow.


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About this article
Series FIA F2
Drivers Karun Chandhok , Pastor Maldonado , Bruno Senna