Turkish Grand Prix - selected driver quotes 26 Aug 2007
Felipe Massa on his second successive Turkish Grand Prix victory for Ferrari; Renaults Giancarlo Fisichella on his first-lap collision with Toyotas Jarno Trulli; and Red Bulls Mark Webber on his early exit in Istanbul. All 22 drivers review Sundays action
Felipe Massa, Ferrari (1st):
"This is becoming a special place for me! It is a really great win! I maintained my concentration for the whole race, trying to control the situation. Only towards the end of the second stint did I make a small mistake at Turn Seven which cost me the gap I had over Kimi, who closed right up to me. I made a very good start and the car behaved perfectly even though it has to be said it was a difficult race. Today's result is a great encouragement when looking to the final part of the season. It is fantastic to head to Monza after a weekend like this. We must continue to work in this same way and give it our best shot."
Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari (2nd):
"Of course I would like to have won but probably the race was decided in yesterday afternoon's qualifying session. When your main rival is your team mate, there are less unknown factors and even less room to come up with something. However, the important thing is to have put two Ferraris in front of everyone else and, in any case, we have made up ground on the championship leader. I got a good start then I had a bit of understeer which went away after a few laps. The second set of tyres did not work as well as the first. The quick lap at the end? I was a bit bored with spending the whole race behind another car and so I tried to see how quick I could have been. In Monza I will have to try and do a good qualifying to be in the best possible situation for the race."
Fernando Alonso, McLaren (3rd):
It was not the plan to lose two places at the start, and so my race was pretty much over when I came into the first corner in sixth place. I was following Nick Heidfeld for 17 laps at the start, and it was very difficult to overtake him. Fortunately we were able to do this in the first round of pitstops and that was when my race could really start. Unfortunately I was 30 seconds down at that point, so third was a good result considering. I was told by the team to take it easy after Lewis Hamiltons puncture to avoid the same thing happening to me, but as I was already quite far back it did not make too much of a difference to my race.
Nick Heidfeld, BMW Sauber (4th):
I am very happy about this result, as the team did a fantastic job. The race strategy, the tyre choice and the pit stops - everything worked perfectly. We made the most out of everything. The start especially was great fun. As the lights went out it wasnt so good, because I was on the dirty side, but then I was able to overtake the others on the outside. I was braking very late for turn one and, once again, I came very close to Fernando Alonso. Of course I dreamt I could keep him behind me over the distance, but we knew he would refuel later than me. After the stop he was in front of me and he was also faster. I pushed very hard for the whole race, and only in the very last laps I felt a little less pressure.
Lewis Hamilton, McLaren (5th):
A little bit unfortunate but still we did a good job, and the team was fantastic all weekend. We had the pace of the Ferraris, but when you are behind you lose a little bit of downforce; we were just matching them for most of the race. I saw some bits fly off the tyre and then it just blew on braking into Turn Nine. It was lucky that I didnt put the car in the gravel and managed to control it back to the pits, as this meant that in the end I only lost two places. We still got some good points and I remain in the lead of the championship by five points, so it is not all bad.
Heikki Kovalainen, Renault (6th):
This was a really good race for me. The start was quite exciting, as Heidfeld pushed me very wide on the run to the first corner, and I had to back off quite a lot. But I defended my position aggressively and once the tyres started working properly after a few laps, the car balance was stable and the pace was consistent. Both types of tyre worked well on our car today, although it felt a little more comfortable in the final laps on the softer one. The team did a great job with the pit-stops, and the strategy was spot on. Ever since Nurburgring when we introduced some new developments, we have been looking for the chance to prove they were a step forward, and I think this race has done that. Now, we need to get our heads down and try to make another step at Monza.
Nico Rosberg, Williams (7th):
Before this weekend started, I didnt expect that we would finish the race in seventh, so I am very pleased - it was a great race. I am also very happy to have beaten Kubica in the BMW - I didnt expect him to pit before us and we beat him fair and square. Towards the end of the race it became more difficult, but the car handled pretty well and the tyre graining was there for a shorter time than I anticipated, so I could continue to push hard. It was great to win two points for both championships and now I am looking forward to Monza, hoping that we can add to our points tally.
Robert Kubica, BMW Sauber (8th):
It was a very hard race and I just hadnt got enough speed. Also when I was lighter in the first stint I could not build up a big enough gap. Every time I pitted someone was overtaking me. I did not have enough speed throughout the whole race, and this also meant I was not able to overtake. I suppose my problems were a bit of everything and I just found the car difficult to drive.
Giancarlo Fisichella, Renault (9th):
My race was compromised by what happened at the first corner. Jarno (Trulli) braked very suddenly in front of me, I had nowhere to go and ended up hitting him, which cost me positions and made him spin. That ruined his race, and I am sorry, but it also cost me the chance of finishing in the points. After that, it was tough: I just had to drive flat out, and hope for retirements. Unfortunately that didn't happen, but the pace of the car was not too bad.
David Coulthard, Red Bull (10th):
I made a good start and made up a few places, I think four, and thereafter I found the car to be a bit inconsistent which did not help me maintain a good pace throughout the race, especially when I had a bit of fuel on board. Now we will just have to see what we can find for the next race in Monza.
Alexander Wurz, Williams (11th):
My start was good and I felt comfortable on my first set of tyres which allowed me to attack. After the first stop, however, it was really close because a lot of people who were on a one-stop strategy went past me and that obviously cost me a bit of time. Ninth may have been possible and so I was pushing from first to last lap, heat is never an issue for me, even if mentally it was a bit tough today. But my nature is always to push! Congratulations to Nico (Rosberg) who really had a fantastic drive.
Ralf Schumacher, Toyota (12th):
I am not really happy with the result. I think we had the speed, but I couldn't really push early in the race and the car was not ideal with the hard tyres, so I lost a bit of time. Also, because I was on a one-stop strategy my car was very heavy and that made it hard to push earlier in the race. But it was the right strategy as it was very difficult from where we were on the grid. As we have seen on Friday, we have decent race speed and when I was in clear air my pace was not so bad in the end. My lap times got better towards the end of the race and they were actually quite good. If our result in qualifying had been better we would have been able to score points. We can definitely expect to fight for points in the remaining races, starting at Monza in two weeks.
Jenson Button, Honda (13th):
It was a lot of fun passing ten cars! If you put to one side where we finished - because 13th position is still far from a good result - I think we had a reasonable race compared to the last one. I had a good time and was able to pass quite a few of the midfield competitors that we've been struggling to keep pace with in recent races. Obviously starting from the back of the grid is not something I want to have to repeat but we did a good job to fight for something better and I think the team can be pleased with our performance today.
Anthony Davidson, Super Aguri (14th):
"It was a good start, but then I got sandwiched going into Turn One between Coulthard and Fisichella. Fisichella and Trulli touched, Trulli spun and I had to go on the outside of him off the track and when I rejoined I touched another car and damaged my front end, which definitely affected the balance of my car.
"It was a tough race from there on really. We had a good strategy. We got ahead of the Toro Rosso, which was who I was fighting with all race, so it is a shame to have had a bit of contact at the start. After that, it was a good clean race and it felt good to finish another Grand Prix."
Vitantonio Liuzzi, Toro Rosso (15th):
Overall, this was actually quite a good race from my point of view and the most important thing is that I finished. I had some problems with a harsh upshift in the first stint and towards the end I eased off a bit to look after the engine. It was good to see the chequered flag. I had a strong race but unfortunately the finish position is not so good, but hardly anyone stopped ahead of us. I am happy to have driven without making any mistakes. I had some good fights with Fisichella at the beginning and then with others at least for a few corners. Even though it is such a tough circuit I felt fine at the end.
Jarno Trulli, Toyota (16th):
We had the opportunity to get a better result but that is racing. It was a shame because the car was well balanced throughout the race and this is thanks to the hard work back at the factory. There was no clear lap for me to show my potential but the feeling of the car was good. The start went well but unfortunately at the first corner Fisichella hit me at the back and I lost a lot of positions. These things can happen. After that I overtook many cars and I had a lot of battles but when you end up at the back it is so difficult to catch up. With our strategy we were hoping to challenge for points but after the first lap that was clearly not possible. Now I will try to forget this race and focus on my home race in Monza. I enjoy racing in Italy so I hope we can get a better result there.
Rubens Barrichello, Honda (17th):
Obviously today was always going to be difficult starting from the back of the field. The car was moving around quite a bit from corner to corner and there wasn't much I could do from where we started.
Takuma Sato, Super Aguri (18th):
"It was a tough race. I did not have a very good start off the line, but I held my position. I was optimistic that I would be able to gain some positions in the back of the queue into Turn One, but just in front of me one of the Toyota cars spun and completely blocked my line.
"I had to brake really hard and to avoid him I had to go round the outside and I lost many places. From then on I had a very tough race and nothing else really happening. It is a shame to finish the race weekend like this, but we just struggled with grip all weekend and continue to lack the pace."
Sebastian Vettel, Toro Rosso (19th):
I had a good start and got away well, but as I upshifted through the gears I lost a bit of momentum. Especially in the first stint I was unable to match the pace of those ahead, particularly down the straight. Apart from that, my biggest problem was at the pit stop when the engine stalled, so we had to re-start it and I was then in neutral instead of first, so it cost me a few seconds. Overall, it was a tough race, and we have to see now why we were not able to run at the pace we had expected. Now, I am looking forward to having my first proper test with the team at Monza next week. As for today, I would prefer to feel a lot more tired than I do, but me much higher up the order!
Sakon Yamamoto, Spyker (20th):
First of all I would like to thank the team as my aim was to finish the race and I've achieved my target, so I am really happy. It was not that easy as I stalled in the pit stop as the fuel pressure was low, but I did not lose too much time with this thankfully. For Monza we should have the B-spec so I am looking forward to this next race. I will go through the data and then prepare for this race and the next test in just a couple of days.
Adrian Sutil, Spyker (21st):
I had a very good start but then I had to go wide as a car was spinning. I didn't lose any places though and the first stint was very competitive. I knew I was quicker than the Toro Rosso but I couldn't find a way past. Then in the pits I stalled and got stuck in gear and as Sakon (Yamamoto) was coming in soon after me they had to put the car in the garage to restart. It is a shame as I had hoped to have a good race, but you know it happens. We did do some really strong lap times though and the stint with the harder tyres got better and better especially the last laps. It was just on the last lap that we had some problems with fuel pressure and I had to stop before the chequered flag.
Mark Webber, Red Bull (DNF):
It looks like it was hydraulics. Its a shame because I was fuelled to go for a long stint, longer than those directly ahead of us and I was just sitting in there, ready to go for it for the rest of the race. On the lap before I stopped I started to have problems with downshifting and then the team called me in to retire.