Grosjean hopes to leave on honeymoon with podium finish in the bag
Hungary was the location for Romain Grosjean’s first pole position in the GP2 Series, so after a weekend in Hockenheim he’d really rather forget, our flying Frenchman is hoping for better things in Budapest.
What’s the key to a good result this weekend in Hungary?
"It’s a familiar story; we need to achieve a good qualifying performance. We have a few updates coming which is good news and I’m sure we are going to be better than we were last time out. In terms of conditions, it should be hot and hopefully sunny which will suit our car better than the cold we’ve seen recently, and certainly better than in the cold and wet! The Hungaroring is a circuit that I quite like and one where I have had good experiences in the past. Hopefully my past history at the track will help me to have a proper race weekend. Having all sessions in the dry, so we can work properly from beginning to end, will also be very helpful!"
What went wrong for you in Hockenheim?
"It was a difficult weekend, especially in qualifying and in the race. We weren’t able to get any pace in qualifying and we’re still trying to understand why that was. My car was very difficult to drive when it was wet, and it was always raining hardest when I wanted to set a fast qualifying lap. On top of that I had a five place penalty on the grid due to my gearbox change. Then in the race, the first lap was a bit of a mess and I got hit by another car. Maybe it was bad luck, but either way I know I need to improve my first laps. I am working on that as it is a bit of a shame when you have a good car, but your race is effectively over after a couple of minutes. In Germany my front wing needed replacing and the punctured tyre damaged the floor. It was then very difficult to finish the race let alone to keep up any sort of good pace. There are races where nothing goes right and it was one of those. Let’s hope the luck will turn around and everything will be much better in Budapest."
Had you driven a race lap with a punctured tyre before?
"No. That was the first time, so I can add that to my experience. It’s difficult to know how fast you can go and you can’t see how much damage is being done to the bodywork. It’s not a nice experience. It’s far better with a car that is healthy!"
You still had to push on in case there were any opportunities for points – it must have been quite character building?
"It was very difficult. The car was not handling well, but this is normal with the damage we had. I hope I don’t have that situation again. The car was unbalanced, unpredictable and inefficient. Everything you don’t want from a car!"
How is your past experience at the Hungaroring?
"I scored my first GP2 Series pole position there in 2008. Last year I won and finished third, which was a pretty good weekend. I’m heading to Hungary with a positive attitude."
How does it feel to have completed half of the season?
"It’s not been easy so far. We’ve had some very good results and some very bad races. The last race was maybe one of the worst - so let’s work, analyse and try to understand so I don’t make mistakes any more. Stay out of trouble and qualify better, this is the key. And from that we can go forwards."
What do you have planned for the August break after the Hungarian Grand Prix?
"I’m going to have my honeymoon so it’s going to be a good month for me. Hopefully I can head off on holiday with the very nice present of a podium finish in the Hungarian Grand Prix."
Source Lotus Renault