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Spanish Grand Prix - selected driver quotes 27 Apr 2008

Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mclaren MP4-23. 
Formula One World Championship, Rd 4, Spanish Grand Prix, Race Day, Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, 27 April 2008 Jenson Button (GBR) Honda in parc ferme. 
Formula One World Championship, Rd 4, Spanish Grand Prix, Race Day, Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, 27 April 2008 Fernando Alonso (ESP) Renault on the grid. 
Formula One World Championship, Rd 4, Spanish Grand Prix, Race Day, Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, 27 April 2008 Takuma Sato (JPN) Super Aguri F1 Team.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 4, Spanish Grand Prix, Qualifying Day, Barcelona, Spain, Saturday, 26 April 2008 Jarno Trulli (ITA) Toyota.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 4, Spanish Grand Prix, Race Day, Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, 27 April 2008

McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton on finally making it back on the podium; Toyota’s Timo Glock on his collision with Red Bull’s David Coulthard; and Toro Rosso’s Sebastian Vettel on his fourth consecutive retirement. All the drivers report back on the Barcelona race…

Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari (1st):
"It would be hard to do better than this!Yesterday pole, today the win, rounded off with a second place for Felipe. We are leading both championships which I'm happy about. The whole weekend went well and we managed to get the result we came here for. It was not an easy win, but what matters is the ten points, not the lead you have when you cross the line. I did not get a perfect start, but it was enough to keep the lead and then we tried to control the situation. The two Safety Car periods complicated things slightly, wiping out the lead we had built up in the first part, but we never lost the lead of the race. The car handled very well and had a great balance. We are leading the world championship, but we know we cannot let up at all: it takes nothing to drop down the order. Heikki's accident? I was very happy when the team told me he was alright and that's the most important thing."

Felipe Massa, Ferrari (2nd):
"These are eight very important points. It is not always possible to win as I did manage in Bahrain a fortnight ago. I made a great start and managed to pass Alonso, getting very close to Kimi. I knew I was stopping a lap before my team-mate and that therefore it would have been very difficult to get ahead of him. That's why I think that today, I did the most I could have done in this situation, bringing home valuable points for myself and for the team. Even this year, despite the banning of electronic driver aids, overtaking is pretty much impossible and the result of qualifying, along with strategy, remains crucial for deciding the finishing order."

Lewis Hamilton, McLaren (3rd):
“First of all I am really happy to hear that Heikki (Kovalainen) is okay. During the race I saw a car had gone into the barriers and was told it was Heikki. As soon as the team knew he was okay, Ron (Dennis) came on the radio and told me which was a great relief. With regard to the race it’s good to be back on the podium. After qualifying, we knew it would be a difficult Grand Prix so I am actually pleased to be third. I made a good start and was able to get lots of traction and could go to the right alongside Robert (Kubica) almost immediately. I managed to overtake him which is usually not easy as I recall from our battles in Formula Three. I pushed extremely hard, particularly in the second and third stints and tried to keep up with the Ferraris. Actually I was pleasantly surprised about how close the competition at the top was which is great for Formula One. We did a good job today, but there are areas where we definitely need to improve, but it’s comforting to know that we are relatively close to Ferrari. I look forward to the Turkish Grand Prix where hopefully Heikki will be back in his usual fine form.”

Robert Kubica, BMW Sauber (4th):
"We had a very good pace during today's race. Unfortunately I lost a position at the start. Anyway at the end our gap to the leader was only five seconds. If someone had told me that yesterday I would not have believed it. I hope Heikki is ok. When I passed the accident I saw the car in a very strange position. The FIA is making great efforts for car safety, so we have to be really thankful to them."

Mark Webber, Red Bull (5th):
“I’m very, very happy. The team worked very hard following the test to get all the parts ready in time and it paid off. We didn’t have a great start to today’s race, but we had good pace and we were there at the end, it’s a great to get a strong finish. I didn’t have very good grip in the final stint, but we weren’t under pressure at that point, so were okay. I’m happy with my driving and the team did an excellent job.”

Jenson Button, Honda (6th):
"It was a good race for us today and I'm really pleased to finish in sixth with three points. Unfortunately the safety car came out at the wrong time for us, although I am pleased to hear that Heikki is okay. I was on a long first stint so it was bad timing and definitely cost me some places. The car was working well with the balance improving lap by lap, particularly on the last stint with harder tyres where I felt very comfortable.”

Kazuki Nakajima, Williams (7th):
"It was a good race and it was important to me to score points today. I made it off the line okay, but I was then caught behind Button so I lost position, which was disappointing. I’m happy with the end result though and this race is another step forward for me. There is, of course, room for improvement but five points in the first four races is a good start in my first year."

Jarno Trulli, Toyota (8th):
"We've scored another point but it should have been more today. This race wasn't easy but everything was going well and we were heading for sixth. Then a communications error led to the team mistakenly calling me into the pits. These
things happen but that cost us two precious points today. Up to then it had been a hard weekend but we were heading for a strong result. It was a battle but I was getting the maximum out of the package and doing my best to stay as close to Webber as possible. We are in a tight group of teams and we will have to keep pushing hard on development to maintain our momentum."

Nick Heidfeld, BMW Sauber (9th):
"At the start I managed to gain the two positions I had wanted to. That's positive, especially because recently we have had less impressive starts. I was fifth in the race when I had bad luck with the timing of the safety car period and my first pit stop. I had just passed the pit entry when I got the signal to come in. I then tried to save fuel and delay my pit stop, but in the end it was the choice between running out of fuel on the track or getting a stop and go penalty."

Giancarlo Fisichella, Force India (10th):
"Not too bad, 10th is the best result of the season so far. I know several cars had accidents but I did my best. After the first safety car period, the car was very good. I was comfortable and I think I was quite competitive. Then in the last stint the grip with the hard tyres wasn't great. I was pushing but I was at the limit with the grip. I enjoyed the battle with Heidfeld - he was quicker than me but I managed to keep him behind for many laps. Better than yesterday definitely but we still need to work a lot and find something more."

Timo Glock, Toyota (11th):
"The start didn't go well and on the way down to the first corner I lost two or three positions. Then a car crossed in front of me and damaged my front wing. That heavily affected the first stint as I lost some aero performance and it meant we had the whole race in traffic. The car felt much better after we changed the nose at the pit stop. But later on Coulthard came out in front of me and he was slow on his out lap. He left me a bit of space and then closed it and I crashed into him. It destroyed my front wing again and that was it."

David Coulthard, Red Bull (12th):
“It’s a horrible thing about being down near the end of the grid - you try to keep out of trouble, but it’s never so easy. I got whacked by Sutil going into Turn Four and picked up some light damage to the side of the car, but after that I was running okay. After my pit stop, I took a defensive line into Turn four and five to show Glock that I knew he was there, but he hit the rear of my car and punctured a tyre.”

Takuma Sato, Super Aguri (13th):
“It was a hard race, but I enjoyed it. The start was reasonably good and I overtook a few cars. Ahead of me a few cars had a coming together and I could not avoid them and lost part of the nose, which then obviously affected my aero balance. The team said that the car looked okay, so we just fought our way through the rest of the race. At one stage we were up in the middle, running as high as ninth, and that was a fantastic feeling. The boys did a great job under difficult circumstances this weekend. I am very happy for them and all the people who are supporting us and I just hope that we can keep this momentum going.”

Nico Rosberg, Williams (DNF):
"In the end, this result is a combination of two things. We brought a new aero package to this race and we went the wrong way with it when it came to set-up in practice. We were able to change this for the race and went much more towards Kazuki’s setting, which worked a lot better as I was able to push harder and I was much happier with that. It was going really well in the race. I had a good start, chose the right way to go off the line and went from 15th to 11th in the first lap so I knew we had a good chance to do well and overtake Jarno for sixth place. Even if I hadn’t passed Jarno, I still would have finished seventh, which would have been good also, so the end result is a shame."

Fernando Alonso, Renault (DNF):
“This weekend has been both sweet and sour. The car was very competitive and we were up there with the Ferraris and the BMWs, which is a good first step. I think now we should hopefully start enjoying races again and racing closer to the front. Although I am disappointed not to finish, it was a nice surprise to see that we are more competitive than we thought we would be.”

Rubens Barrichello, Honda (DNF):
"The car was performing well today so it was especially disappointing that the incident in the pitlane with Fisichella brought my race to an end. From what we can see, it was just one of those unfortunate incidents. The team released me and advised me of traffic, so I stayed out of the fast lane. Fisichella overtook me and cut into his box clipping my front wing at the same time. I managed to get round the lap with the wing caught under the front of the car but unfortunately the damage caused to the bodywork was too great to continue and I was forced to retire.”

Anthony Davidson, Super Aguri (DNF):
“It was a disappointing end to the weekend for me. After Piquet ran wide at the beginning of the race he dragged a lot of gravel on to the track and a stone from that then damaged my water radiator, putting me out of the race. I got a good start and felt comfortable in the car up to that point, so it is a shame to have retired so early, but I’d like to thank everyone in the team for their hard work and determination this weekend.”

Sebastien Bourdais, Toro Rosso (DNF):
“I would not like to say exactly what happened until I see the replay. All I know is that I checked my mirrors and Nelson (Piquet) did not seem to be in a position to attack, even though he was close to me, but not close enough. I braked for Turn 10 quite late, started to turn into the corner and all of a sudden, he was there alongside me as I turned. That was the end of the story. It's a shame as we had done a pretty good job this weekend up to that point.”

Nelson Piquet, Renault (DNF):
“I made my first mistake early on and went off the track, but I was able to rejoin down the field and from then on I tried to attack, which meant I had to take a few risks. I am disappointed, but there is no doubt that we have made a lot of progress this weekend. I must take what I can from this race, so that I do not make the same mistakes in the future. I am now looking forward to Turkey and doing my best there.”

Adrian Sutil, Force India (DNF):
"Again a disappointing day. After a good start into turn four I was on the inside and had a try to overtake another car, but it was too close and I couldn't make the corner. I crashed into a car and my race was over then and there. A very disappointing end to the weekend."

Sebastian Vettel, Toro Rosso (DNF):
"This is very disappointing, especially as there was nothing I could do about it. The collision happened at Turn Four, when Adrian (Sutil) was far too optimistic in attempting an overtaking manoeuvre. He clipped an other car and that spun him round right in front of me. I tried to get through on the inside, but there was no way for me to go. I might have managed it, but I had a Super Aguri also trying to get past it. We'll just have to try again in Istanbul. Hopefully we can get the new car soon and move out of the back of the pack, where I have had so many problems at the start of races."