This weekend, the German Nurburgring will host the fifth round of the 2009 GP2 Series. For both Fat Burner Racing Engineering drivers, Dani Clos and Lucas Di Grassi, the upcoming weekend will present another opportunity to show their skills at the...
This weekend, the German Nurburgring will host the fifth round of the 2009 GP2 Series. For both Fat Burner Racing Engineering drivers, Dani Clos and Lucas Di Grassi, the upcoming weekend will present another opportunity to show their skills at the steering wheel of the GP2 car and pursue their respective goals: score more points to continue fighting for the championship in the case of the Brazilian, and gain more experience and obtain those first points, that since the beginning of the season seem to be within reach, in the case of the Spanish rookie.
Lucas Di Grassi: "We have shown that we are very fast and competitive"
Lucas, almost three weeks without driving the GP2 car, have you been enjoying your time off? I have actually enjoyed quite a bit this free time we have had between the race weekend in Silverstone and the next event in Germany.
I have been doing what I like the most, a lot of sports, but most of the time I have been driving my go-kart.
After your victory in Istanbul you went back to the podium in Silverstone. Do you think you will continue with this trend the upcoming weekend in Germany?
I really hope we continue with this trend. The car has improved a lot since the beginning of the season and I am very happy with the team. Now our aim is to try and win the Saturday races and score good points on Sunday's sprint races.
The next round of the GP2 Championship is taking place at the Nurburgring, whereas last year's German event took place at the Hockenheimring. This means that the second generation GP2 car will race at the Nurburgring for the first time. Does this require a special kind of preparation?
To be honest, there is nothing really special about this. We have to rely on the simulator and on the experience gained during previous events from others years. I like the Nurburgring a lot and it brings back nice memories as I had a good result over there in 2007.
How would you describe the Nurburgring? Is it a track you like?
Yes! I really like the Nurburgring. The track is awesome and very technical. Therefore it can be really challenging for the drivers. There are very exciting corners that suit the GP2 car perfectly. I am really looking forward to this event.
Since the beginning of the season we have seen a very high level of competitiveness in the GP2 field and the championship continues being very open. Who do you see as your main competitors at the moment?
All drivers are competitors. The aim is to be GP2 champion and we are working very hard to achieve this. I think we have shown that we are very fast and competitive, and our goal has not changed since the beginning of the season.
Dani Clos: "I will carry on giving 100% to give some joy to my team and fans"
Dani, it is nearly three weeks since the last GP2 Series races in Great Britain. What have you been doing since then?
After the weekend in Silverstone, I stayed a few days with my teammate Lucas in London where we did a few things together. Then I went back to Barcelona where I relaxed. At home I carried on with my physical training but also enjoyed the free time. It is always good to disconnect your mind a bit and relax. Last week I traveled to Sanlucar to go back to reality and start working with my engineer and mechanics towards the next race at the Nurburgring. I love coming to the team's workshop because like that I switch to race mode before arriving at the circuit. Here, in Sanlucar, I ask questions, I seek advice and I try and learn as much as possible about the car, etc. On top of that, I feel that the relationship between the team and me grows stronger. This week I will go to England to practice with the simulator and also to run on track.
You have shown a great performance during the race weekends, but you have suffered four DNFs since the beginning of the season and for one reason or another you have not been able to score your first points in GP2. Would you say that luck has not been on your side?
Honestly, I consider that every person makes his or her own luck. I am working very hard and during the race weekends I am showing that I can be very fast, but it is true that for some reason I have not been able to score any points. I know the beginning of the season has been hard, but I also know that soon I will score my first points. I will carry on giving 100% and working very hard to give some joy to my team and fans.
The next stop of GP2 Series will be in Germany, at the Nurburgring. You are no stranger to the track, so could you tell us what would be the challenges you will have to face on this circuit?
Well, like you mentioned, it is a circuit that I already know, which is something positive compared to the race in Silverstone. One of the most fundamental parts of this layout is the first sector because it is the most technical one. It is where the car and driver have to be very careful. Another positive thing about the Nurburgring is that there are a few overtaking points, which is always something good.
How do you approach this event and what will be your target for the upcoming weekend?
I do not want to impose any targets on myself. I will just work hard, hoping that I will do a good job and have nothing hampering my way to the points. I totally trust my team and engineer. We have a very good car and I am sure we will do good things.