Silverstone: Race 1 press conference

Maldonado, Bianchi and Clos discuss the race GP2 Series: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the press conference for today's feature race here in Silverstone. Joining us we have race winner Pastor Maldonado from Rapax, in second we have Jules ...

Maldonado, Bianchi and Clos discuss the race

GP2 Series: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the press conference for today's feature race here in Silverstone. Joining us we have race winner Pastor Maldonado from Rapax, in second we have Jules Bianchi from ART, and in third we have Dani Clos from Racing Engineering. Pastor, congratulations on your third win of the season, which you made look easy from outside the car: was it any different from inside the car?

Pastor Maldonado: For sure it's never easy! The race was very long, and at the beginning I was not too quick because of the set up, but after the pitstop the car was really, really good: I pushed very constant all through the race, and I could make the quickest laps, so it's been a great weekend for me already. I was only disappointed for pole, because I had traffic in qualifying, but in the race I was very strong again, I did the quickest lap: almost perfect! [laughs]

GP2 Series: You made up for the lack of pole by getting an amazing start, though...

Pastor: The start was good! [laughs] Incredibly good -- I was trying everything at the start to make the place! I tried to do my best at the start, and I did it!

GP2 Series: And after the pitstop, you set a string of fastest laps, so I guess nothing to complain about with the car...

Pastor: Our package is now one of the best, I'm driving very good, I have a very good margin in the championship, so everything is looking very good this year.

GP2 Series: Have the other guys got any chance this year? [laughs]

Pastor: [laughs] Well it's always difficult, it's never easy, like you saw with qualifying yesterday -- the important thing is to always be constant, always be quick, every meeting, every race, and we'll see in the second part of the championship. The first part we have been strong, but I think we need to work very hard to make it the same for the second half.

GP2 Series: Good job today. Jules, congratulations on P2 today. It looked a bit like he got away at the start and that was the end of the race, but how did it look from your seat?

Jules Bianchi: Yeah, I did a normal start but I think Pastor did a really good job at the start, and then I was second. Dani was behind me but I was quick and I made a bit of a gap, and I was right behind Pastor, because the car was really good before the pitstop. After that we went into the pits at the same time as Pastor, but then I had a bit of understeer and it was difficult to improve, although I did a bit lap by lap. I went back a little to improve my tyres so I could go for the fastest lap, but I didn't do it: I just missed it by three tenths. Pastor was too quick today, but it was like this and we will work hard to improve for tomorrow.

GP2 Series: You were close at the end when you were both going for the fastest lap: do you think you had the same pace as him today?

Jules: In the beginning I did the fastest lap before the pitstop I think, but after that he was really quick, like two or three tenths faster. After that I knew that it was not possible to win so I pulled back a bit to save the tyres to go for the fastest lap, and I was just waiting until the end for that, but my set up was not so good and I used a lot the tyres, especially the front, so I couldn't get the fastest lap today.

GP2 Series: Nevertheless you've got ten points from the weekend already, and another chance to add to your total and try to catch Pastor a little tomorrow: what are your thoughts for the race?

Jules: Yes, everything is possible: we'll see tomorrow, and for sure I will try to get some points and improve in the championship, but it's halfway through the season and we need to push. There is a long way to go and it is all possible, so we will work hard and see what we can do.

GP2 Series: Good job today. Dani, on P3 and a return to the podium after a little break. A strong drive to stay with these guys in the first half, and then a battle with Sam in the second half: how was the race for you?

Dani Clos: It's been a tough race! They did a really good start and I could stay with them, I had a good rhythm and felt really comfortable with the car, and then two or three laps before the stop we had a little problem with the tyres, and after the pitstop we did a really good outlap: I was trying hard to catch them but they made already a long gap, and after that we were just maintaining the pace with Bird behind me and I knew I couldn't catch Bianchi. I tried to push and also maintain the tyres, because it's a really tough track for them, and then we got the podium, more points, and we just take everything race by race.

GP2 Series: How do you deal with a situation like the second half of the race, where you didn't quite have the pace of the guys in front and you have another one pushing behind you? Is it a case of just hold him off, or do you look ahead because it's so hard to overtake here?

Dani: It was just controlling the guy behind: Bird had a really good rhythm so I was trying to hold him, and I think he lost it a little at the end when his tyres went away and I kept mine a bit, and that's it: there is no big thing, I just maintained my pace, got some points, and look ahead to tomorrow.

GP2 Series: You're P6 tomorrow, ahead of these guys: what are your plans?

Dani: Overtake more than them! [laughs]

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About this article
Series FIA F2
Drivers Pastor Maldonado , Dani Clos , Jules Bianchi
Teams Racing Engineering , Rapax