Racing Engineering looking to build on the success of Hockenheim this weekend in Hungary.
It’s just one week since the last round of the 2012 GP2 Series was held in Germany but already the GP2 teams and drivers are arriving in Hungary for round 9 of the season.
The 4.381km Hungaroring is situated near Budapest and, first built in 1986, it has undergone a number of alterations since then. The track itself is notable for its twisty, bumpy surface and it comprises 14 corners connected by some short straights making overtaking difficult.
For this weekend Pirelli will be providing the P Zero White medium tyres and P Zero Red supersoft tyres. It is likely that the two compounds will offer a large difference in performance and, with each driver having three sets of the medium compound and two sets of the supersoft, the use of the tyres over the practice, qualifying and two races may prove to be a vital part of the weekend’s strategy.
Following on from their successful weekend at Hockenheim where Fabio Leimer finished second and fourth in the two races and Nathanaël Berthon finished a fighting ninth in the Sprint Race, despite starting fifteenth, the whole Racing Engineering team are looking forward to the Budapest weekend with a lot of confidence and both drivers should be at the front of the field.
Below Fabio Leimer looks back at Hockenheim and forward to Budapest:
Fabio, the race weekend at the Hockenheimring was a very successful one for you with a front row start, second place in the Feature Race and fourth place in Sunday's Sprint Race. You were one of the drivers scoring the most points, are you satisfied with how the weekend went?
Yes, the weekend at the Hockenheimring was very positive and we could collect a lot of points, which is very important. I am satisfied with the second position in the Feature Race even though the victory was within reach. But we have shown that we are very strong and consistent during races. I am therefore very confident regarding the upcoming event in Budapest and hope to score many points there as well.
Just like at Silverstone the rain was a dominating feature for a big part of the weekend, but you feel pretty confident on a wet track. True?
Yes, definitely true. I feel very good in the rain, also as I have a very good car. And with wet conditions, it is all about how comfortable and confident you feel when it comes to being fast. We have shown this year that we are fast in the dry as well as when it's wet.
You started Saturday's race from second position on the grid, quickly took the lead, but in the end finished in second as, like 23 other cars, you started the race on rain tyres. Why did you opt for wets?
I think we made the right decision. When you start from the front row like me, you go with the safe option; I think therefore that it was right to start on the rain tyres. When you start so far back as Cecotto and Richelmi did, then it's obvious that you can take a higher risk as they had nothing to lose anymore. And this time it worked out very well for them. I therefore think we can be very satisfied with this second place.
The upcoming round of the 2012 GP2 Series takes place at Budapest's Hungaroring. What are its main characteristics of this track?
I am very much looking forward to Budapest! I have always been fast on this track, which is very demanding as you never have a break given its layout. I also think that the Hungaroring will be very hard on tyres. Additionally it's a track where overtaking is really difficult and the only spot to do so is on the straight. This makes qualifying even more important.
What are your expectations for this weekend?
For sure it’s to win the race. We have been so fast and consistent with our performance all season long, so it's clear I want to take pole position and win the Feature Race.
Source: Racing Engineering