Canadian Grand Prix - selected driver quotes 08 Jun 2008
BMW Saubers Robert Kubica on taking a historic maiden victory; McLarens Lewis Hamilton and Ferraris Kimi Raikkonen on the pit-lane incident that ruined both their races; and David Coulthard on putting Red Bull back on the podium. The drivers report back on all the action in Montreal
Robert Kubica, BMW Sauber (1st):
"I'm very happy at having won the first race for BMW Sauber. I'm also happy for Poland and all my fans. It was a very difficult race for me. I started on the dirty side of the track and Kimi Raikkonen was nearly able to pass me, but I just managed to keep him behind. The timing of the safety car was unlucky for me, because I wanted to pit, but then the yellow light went on just about three seconds too early, so I had to continue.
"When the pit lane was open, almost everybody pitted together. I stopped at the exit because the light was still red. Kimi stopped beside me, and then I heard the noise when Hamilton crashed into his car. I have to be grateful to Lewis (Hamilton) as he chose Kimi and not myself. After this pit stop I was stuck behind the one-stoppers and lost a lot of time. Timo Glock was the last one of them to stop, and only then could I push. I had just eight laps to increase the gap to 21 seconds, which was a huge challenge. I finally managed to get a 24 second lead, which meant I was able to stay ahead of Nick (Heidfeld). From this moment on I took it a bit easier, but even then it's very easy to make a mistake, particularly because of the tarmac that was destroyed in some places. But it all worked out and I'm just happy!"
Nick Heidfeld, BMW Sauber (2nd):
"Congratulations to Robert for winning this race, which he really deserved! I made a poor start and lost a position to Rubens Barrichello. Fortunately I was able to pass him, and from this moment on I was one of the fastest cars on the track. I stayed out when most of the other cars pitted because I was on a long stint. I was pushing very hard at that stage. We then decided to switch to a one stop strategy, with a very high fuel load and with the soft option tyres which was a challenge. However, I was able to keep Fernando Alonso behind me.
"After his second pit stop Robert stayed ahead so I secured second place. Finishing second after starting from eighth is a great result, especially considering the difficult time I have had recently. Thanks a lot to the guys in Hinwil, who built me a new chassis after the accident I had with Alonso in Monaco!"
David Coulthard, Red Bull (3rd):
"Im delighted to get a podium for the team, theyve had a lot of work on at the previous races and back at base. You can expect some unusual results here, o we fuelled it long; but we expected the incidents would occur on track, not in the pit lane. But, nonetheless, the strategy worked well and all credit to the engineers, mechanics and everyone back at Red Bull for all their hard work. The start was pretty hairy with all the cars bunched up round Turn One and Turn Two, but my goal was to get to the finish and get points, so to get my 62nd podium is a great result. This adds to the points Mark (Webber) has already scored this season and helps us build our total in the Championship.
Timo Glock, Toyota (4th):
This is a fantastic day, and I'm delighted to take my first points of the year. I lost three places at the start, leaving me behind Jarno (Trulli). I was quicker but when I got close enough I destroyed my rear tyres. So I did my best to preserve them because I knew I was on a longer first stint and I was able to get by at the pit stop. After that it was really tricky to keep the car on the track in these conditions. I made one mistake and caused Jarno to lose a place, which is a pity. But then I tried to stay in front of Massa and not make any mistakes. The result is great for the team, great for my crew, the mechanics and the engineers who have done a perfect job in the last few weeks. I dedicate the points to them.
Felipe Massa, Ferrari (5th):
"It's hard to express my feelings after a race like this. On the one hand, I am disappointed because, without my refuelling problem, I could have been fighting for a place on the podium. On the other hand, I am happy to have brought home four points at the end of a very difficult race run on a track surface that was in really poor condition. Once I found myself at the back, I tried to climb back up again, but in the end, when I was behind Glock, I could not get past him and also I didn't want to run the risk of ending up off the track after all the trouble I'd been to to get that far. I would like to congratulate Kubica and BMW: they worked really well and deserved this success. They are very strong, but I think we are working in the right direction, as could be seen from our performance level every day here."
Jarno Trulli, Toyota (6th):
This was a very good result for the whole team so I am very happy. We knew this would be a hard race and I just wanted to bring the car home because I wasn't feeling confident. The biggest mistake I made was before qualifying when I changed the set-up and suddenly I found myself qualifying with completely different track conditions. That cost me because I was unable to push as hard as I wanted. Towards the end of the race I had some trouble with the brakes. Then I was unfortunate that Timo made a small mistake late on. When he came back on the track I had to lift off and Massa got past. Still, in the end it's great to score points and I am happy for everyone.
Rubens Barrichello, Honda (7th):
"I'm pleased with the two points today, particularly as we thought our chances of a points finish were slim when we started the weekend. It was a very tough race and I have not been feeling well since yesterday due to a cold, which made it an even tougher physical challenge. We were running well on the prime tyre for the first part of the race and the safety car certainly helped to improve our track position. Unfortunately when we switched to the option tyre after my one and only stop and with a heavy fuel load, I was really struggling with a lack of grip. I went off the track on the marbles and lost a couple of positions at turns three and four, which is a shame. Yesterday I didn't know if I was going to be well enough to race, so all things considered we did a good job today and I'm pleased to keep up the points-scoring momentum from Monaco."
Sebastian Vettel, Toro Rosso (8th):
First of all I have to thank the mechanics who did a great job to rebuild the car after my mistake on Saturday morning. They did an unbelievable job, working through the night to get the work done. Its thank to them I raced today Starting from pit lane wasnt easy but straight away I was able to catch the field, with a very good pace in the race and the car felt quite good. I was able to make up a couple of places and then after the safety car came out, which for sure helped us, we ran a one stop strategy. I do not know exactly what happened during the pit stop, I would say a problem with the refueling rig, but it cost us a lot of time maybe two positions in the ranking but nevertheless it was a great day and finishing P8 was fantastic. The race conditions were really bad with the asphalt still falling apart you couldnt afford to go off line or you would lose at least a second. The last 10 laps didnt make my life easy and I was in one of the most difficult position as the cars I had behind were quite strong. I wanted the point and I resisted various attacks. I was held up by Barrichello and I think he had a problem. It was a great race, I had a great fun- a fantastic race for me and the team
Heikki Kovalainen, McLaren (9th):
"Today wasn't a great day for me. At the start of the race I felt we had the potential to record a very good result - but then I started to experience quite a lot of graining on my first set of tyres. Changing tyres didn't seem to help matters, and I was never therefore able to push hard to the finish. It's always difficult when you come home empty-handed, but this weekend has shown that we have a package that can compete for a win - and I'll keep pushing for exactly that in Magny-Cours."
Nico Rosberg, Williams (10th):
"It was great to begin with and it was going fantastically at the start. I passed Alonso into turn one and I was getting away from him, yet at the same time I wasnt losing too much to Massa in front. But then there was the incident in the pitlane, which really was unfortunate. Later in the race I tried to pass Vettel as it was really necessary to have a go, but I got off the clean line and went wide and Heikki Kovalainen got past me. I am now looking ahead to the next race in France where naturally we will be hoping to achieve a better result."
Jenson Button, Honda (11th):
"It was a very tough and ultimately disappointing race today. It's always difficult starting from the back of the grid and we were using a set-up that we hadn't run previously this weekend. Things didn't quite go our way with the strategy and safety car which meant I was unable to make any progress up the field by the end of the race. We need to get our heads down now and work hard to make improvements before France to ensure that we are more competitive there."
Mark Webber, Red Bull (12th):
I was on a two stop strategy and David was on a one-stop. We were out of position a bit with what happened in qualifying yesterday and it was difficult to recover from there. Davids result brings a lot of points for the team though, which is very good."
Sebastien Bourdais, Toro Rosso (13th):
Its just been a bad weekend all round. The race went much as I expected it, because of the really bad track conditions from the mid point on or even earlier. In these conditions, some guys did really well, like Sebastian, but I could not do anything with the car. I went slightly off the line and got the gravel. If this happens once or twice you are concerned it can happen again which is not good, especially when youre running last. It was a complete disaster for me so I just forgot about the possibility of trying to drive fast, just trying to bring the car home and even doing this was a challenge. This was the worst race ever for me, the worst weekend of my entire career. I have never experienced anything like it. Im looking forward now to the next race, my home race and at a circuit where the track doesnt break up!
Giancarlo Fisichella, Force India (DNF):
"It was a difficult race and the grip level was poor as the track was breaking down and at the end it was like being in a four wheel drive car. I think our pace was there, particularly in the second stint, but during the first pit stop I had a problem with the stall and dropped right back. We thought there would be a safety car just before my second stop, but it never came, but at the end I had some problems and had to stop anyway. It's quite disappointing."
Kazuki Nakajima, Williams (DNF):
"With all the other incidents in the field, it was going well, but then when I was following Jenson, it seemed as if he got on the marbles in the middle of the hairpin and lost traction, and I couldnt avoid him. I damaged my front wing and it was coming off. When I came into the pitlane, it detached itself completely and was stuck under the chassis, so I couldnt make the corner, so that was it for me."
Fernando Alonso, Renault (DNF):
It's truly a missed opportunity today. I am extremely disappointed, as is the team, but our strategy was not the best suited for today. We now have to work hard to be in the position to challenge for big points.
Nelson Piquet, Renault (DNF):
It's a disappointing end to my weekend, but I still take some positives from the race as the car was good today and our strategy looked really promising. The race was pretty hectic in the early laps, but unfortunately we had a brake problem and so I had to retire the car. It's a shame as we could have challenged for the points today. Now we need to focus on the next race in France.
Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari (DNF):
"There's not much I can say. My race was ruined by Hamilton's mistake. Obviously, anyone can make mistakes, as I did two weeks ago in Monaco, but it's one thing to make a mistake at two hundred (miles) per hour but another to hit a car stopped at a red light. I am not angry because that doesn't achieve anything and does not change my result! I am unhappy, because I had a great chance of winning. Once the graining had gone from the tyres, the car was going very well. I have failed to score in these last two races and now it's time to start winning again. There is still a long way to go in the championship and it is still very close and we have everything we need to regain the ground we have lost."
Lewis Hamilton, McLaren (DNF):
"Before my pit stop, everything looked on course for the perfect result: we were so quick, we were breezing it in fact. But it wasn't a great pit stop - and, as I exited the box, I saw two cars jostling for position ahead of me in the pit lane. Obviously, I didn't want to get involved in their tussle, and was trying not to do so, and then all of a sudden they stopped. And by the time they'd come to a halt, it was too late for me to avoid them. It's just unfortunate when stuff like this happens, but I have no argument with the stewards. We'd looked so strong for the whole weekend though, so at least we can leave Montreal confident that we have a package that will enable us to fight for the World Championship from here on in."
Adrian Sutil, Force India (DNF):
"Another disappointing day. This time the gearbox was a problem, I couldn't shift into second or third gear and didn't have any speed anymore and I had to stop after 12 laps which was frustrating. The track was not too bad at the start, it looked more difficult than it was but the hairpin was quite okay. It was very dirty at the beginning, but at that stage I think our pace was quite good. I just couldn't find a way to get past the two Toyotas, which was a bit of a problem as they were holding me up, but the pace was there, we just finished too early with this technical problem."