Hungarian Grand Prix - selected driver quotes 03 Aug 2008
McLarens Heikki Kovalainen on his maiden Formula One victory; Ferraris Felipe Massa on his engine failure in the closing stages of the race; and Lewis Hamilton on the front-left puncture that knocked him off the podium. All 20 drivers report back on Sundays action
Heikki Kovalainen, Mclaren (1st):
"There have been races this year where Ive been in a position to challenge for victory but had something go wrong for me. Halfway through this race, things started working for me and I started pushing Felipe (Massa) hard - and it worked. I feel sorry for Felipe because he drove a great race, but my car felt good and I knew I could push for the victory. This is a great moment for me, something Ive been targeting for many years. Hopefully, this victory will be the first of many."
Timo Glock, Toyota (2nd):
"What an incredible feeling. I couldn't believe it when I saw Felipe's (Massa) engine go and I was P2. To get such a good result in my first year is fantastic so a huge thank you to all the team, including the engineers, mechanics and everyone at the factory. I knew from qualifying that we had good speed and we've looked strong all weekend. Today I made a good start and gained a place into the first corner. I had a really good car and everything went perfectly until the last stint on the soft tyres. I was struggling a lot and soon I had Kimi (Raikkonen) behind me. But I knew from last year here in GP2, when I was stuck in the midfield in a really good car, how hard it is to pass here. So when I saw him in the mirrors I knew I couldn't afford any mistakes. This result more than makes up for Hockenheim and now we must keep picking up regular points until the end of the season."
Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari (3rd):
"I am sorry for Felipe and for the team as it is horrible to lose a race in this way. It was tough for me because, when you spend a long time behind a slower car it becomes frustrating and boring. When I was finally able to push, the car was behaving very well, but by then it was too late. I came up behind Glock but in the end, I had to slow as I had a mechanical problem with the rear end and the team told me to be very careful to ensure I brought the car home. It's true that I'm the one who has won the most points out of the top three in the classification, which shows this championship is really unpredictable, with ups and downs for everyone. It was a disappointing weekend for me but, at least I managed to come away with a decent result. We must try and fix the problems we have in qualifying to start at the front, so as to exploit the potential of the car. If we can do that, then we can get back to fighting for the win."
Fernando Alonso, Renault (4th):
"We fought hard today and we were on the pace with a car that was working well, which is encouraging for the rest of the championship. We scored some important points which is satisfying, even though we could have maybe been on the podium. We must now continue working hard, but today's result shows that we are moving in the right direction."
Lewis Hamilton, McLaren (5th):
"Congratulations to Heikki for his first and very well deserved grand prix win. The race could have been better for me. My start was okay, but Felipes was better and he managed to overtake me. I managed to maintain the gap during the first stint and felt comfortable in the second stint because I was matching his times but was going to be running longer to the final stops. I feel I could have had a go at passing him, but the damaged tyre halted my progress. I dont yet know what happened. But at least I scored four points and maintained my lead in the championship, so this result is not too bad for me."
Nelson Piquet, Renault (6th):
"I am happy with my result this weekend. I scored some valuable points which is promising for the rest of the season. I made a good start, but unfortunately I made a small mistake on the first lap, which meant that I lost the two positions that I had made up. It shows that at this level you cannot afford to make the smallest error. I am continuing to learn and I am determined to continue building on this progress when we go to Valencia at the end of the month."
Jarno Trulli, Toyota (7th):
"This is a very good result for us and to pick up ten points is great for the constructors' championship. I'm glad for Timo because he has had a very good weekend and fully deserves this result. This could have been better for me too, despite my problems in qualifying. I was quick today but I couldn't push because I only had one lap that was clear of traffic in the whole afternoon. I gained one position early on but overtaking is practically impossible here. Around the second stops I was also stuck behind Lewis, holding me up further. Still, I'm delighted that we are showing such strong form and I just hope we can carry on in good shape and with such good results."
Robert Kubica, BMW Sauber (8th):
"This was a difficult race. We were very slow and I was struggling with the overall grip of the car. I had massive oversteer and could not really push. I was trying hard to keep the car on the track. Anyway, one point is better than nothing."
Mark Webber, Red Bull (9th):
We werent quick enough. We didnt do a good enough job in qualifying yesterday, which hurt us in the race. We struggled to find pace - and it was hard to stay with the Toyotas and Renaults, who were fighting in the championship. Lets hope its this track though and that we can bounce back in Valencia.
Nick Heidfeld, BMW Sauber (10th):
"My start wasn't perfect but okay. As I had hoped, I was able to overtake three cars on the first lap. But later it became more difficult than expected to race with the heavy car. We went for a one stop strategy, so my car was almost full of fuel at the start and I also had to take care of the tyres. I couldn't match the pace of the cars in front of me. Now we have to analyse today's lack of race pace. Normally this is one of our strengths!"
David Coulthard, Red Bull (11th):
Unfortunately I got some traffic before my last stop, which allowed Nick (Heidfeld) to pass me; otherwise I couldnt do anymore today. The car has a lot of oversteer and rear sliding. Now well just focus on the next race and see that we can do there.
Jenson Button, Honda (12th):
"Looking at the weekend as a whole, we have made good progress and can take a lot away from here. Unfortunately the race was frustrating. I made it tough for myself with a poor start, which dropped me down to P14 after the first couple of corners. I got boxed in at Turn One and had a lot of wheelspin out of the corner, which allowed a few people to get past on the outside. I was able to get past Rubens (Barrichello) on lap three, which was fun, but after that I quickly came up to the back of Heidfeld. He was very strong on the last two corners so I had no chance to overtake on the track and he was on a one-stop strategy. However in clean air, our pace was good, so this weekend is a definite step forward and I am reasonably happy with the outcome."
Kazuki Nakajima, Williams (13th):
"Obviously it was a very difficult race for us. We converted my strategy to a one stopper, which was the right thing to do, so thanks to the team for that. After that though, I was running heavy and struggling on the option tyres so had to fight for pace. I then made contact with Fisichella and lost a position. Fortunately, I was able to regain it when he had to make his final stop. That was all we could do today so we need to look into what happened and try to improve for the next race."
Nico Rosberg, Williams (14th):
"My first lap wasnt great. I was in the wrong place and lost a few positions. Then, during my first pit-stop, something went wrong with the fuel rig which cost me a couple of decisive seconds and put me behind Fisichella. My strategy was over then. In terms of the heat I didnt have a problem with it; weve definitely had worse races this year."
Giancarlo Fisichella, Force India (15th):
"It was a tough race as we were fighting quite a lot. We were quite heavy at the beginning of the race but the pace really wasn't too bad and I could keep up with the others in front of me. In fact the two Williams were only two laps heavier than me when I was just behind them, but I was keeping the same pace. Even at the end of the race in the last few laps I could do a 1 min 22.6s, which is a good lap time. In terms of strategy we did well, that was the maximum we could get from this race, we just need a step forward for the next few races."
Rubens Barrichello, Honda (16th):
"After a good start where I made up four positions on the opening lap, unfortunately it wasn't a very exciting race for me. We decided to start with used front and new rear tyres which proved to be a problem as the car was out of balance for the first stint. Then at my first pit stop we were unlucky to have the problem with the rig which resulted in a small fire and a long delay whilst we got fuel into the car using the second rig. After that, my race was effectively over as the number of blue flags made it impossible to make progress. We decided to drop the revs on the engine and do some testing with the tyres as we had overheating problems over the weekend and it was good to collect some data on this. For me the actual race was one to forget really."
Felipe Massa, Ferrari (17th):
"It happened completely without warning, without giving the slightest indication. I was managing the race, because I had a good advantage over second place after Hamilton was delayed with a problem and I was taking no risks whatsoever. I am very frustrated at the moment, because today we had a great car and we had done everything perfectly until just a few kilometres from the finish. Unfortunately, racing can be a cruel sport. We had given it our all, but these things can happen. Now we must not give up, but instead we must react quickly. There are seven races to go and 70 points up for grabs, which means there is plenty of time to make up ground. Our rivals are strong but we have shown we are at their level."
Sebastien Bourdais, Toro Rosso (18th):
There have been two sides to this weekend: it got off to a good start and then I had some problems in qualifying. The race also started quite well, as I had a good pace. Then it all went to hell at the first pit stop, as the guys had to use the fire extinguisher and I got a lot of foam on my visor. It happened again at the second stop and this time I had foam inside and outside my visor and couldnt see a thing so had to make another stop to get it cleaned. By this stage, we had lost so much time, there was nothing else to do and I preferred to make the extra stop as the lack of visibility was dangerous.
Adrian Sutil, Force India (DNF):
"My start was normal, I was on the outside going into turn one but then I had to go a little bit wide and dropped back a place. Then the problems started on the third lap when my brakes started to overheat, particularly the rear ones, and I had to move my brake balance forward. From that point on I had problems, with lots of locking on the front and understeer and it was difficult to handle the car. Considering this, my race pace was not bad in the first stint, but then in the second stint I was held up by the group in front when I was quite light and lost some time there. In the final stint I had a puncture on the front right under braking and then the brakes gave up and my race was over. Overall, I am disappointed because we've worked hard for the whole weekend and then after three laps we have a problem so I couldn't show the performance I wanted to."
Sebastian Vettel, Toro Rosso (DNF):
I didnt have a very good pit stop and that caused the engine to overheat and that messed up some parts and I had no choice but to retire. Its a shame as I had a good pace from the car this afternoon. I made a mistake in running wide at the last corner on the first lap and lost a lot of places. I was stuck behind Barrichello and it was impossible to overtake. This hasnt been a good weekend and that goes back to Friday when I suffered reliability problems and then came the disappointment this afternoon.