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Canada preview quotes - Force India, Mercedes & more 03 Jun 2013

Paul di Resta (GBR) Force India VJM06.
Formula One World Championship, Rd3, Chinese Grand Prix, Qualifying, Shanghai, China, Saturday, 13 April 2013 Adrian Sutil (GER) Force India F1.
Formula One World Championship, Rd3, Chinese Grand Prix, Preparations, Shanghai, China, Thursday, 11 April 2013 Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Force India Formula One Team Owner.
Formula One World Championship, Rd17, Indian Grand Prix, Buddh International Circuit, Greater Noida, New Delhi, India, Qualifying, Saturday, 27 October 2012 Paul Hembery (GBR) Pirelli Motorsport Director with FanVision.
Formula One World Championship, Rd16, Korean Grand Prix, Practice, Korea International Circuit, Yeongam, South Korea, Friday, 12 October 2012 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1.
Formula One World Championship, Rd1, Australian Grand Prix, Practice, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia, Friday, 15 March 2013 Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Bahrain Grand Prix, Qualifying, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Saturday, 20 April 2013 Ross Brawn (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 Team Principal.
Formula One World Championship, Rd1, Australian Grand Prix, Preparations, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, 14 March 2013 Toto Wolff (AUT) Mercedes AMG Executive Director.
Formula One World Championship, Rd3, Chinese Grand Prix, Qualifying, Shanghai, China, Saturday, 13 April 2013 Pastor Maldonado (VEN) Williams.
Formula One World Championship, Rd3, Chinese Grand Prix, Practice, Shanghai, China, Friday, 12 April 2013 Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Bahrain Grand Prix, Qualifying, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Saturday, 20 April 2013 Mike Coughlan (GBR) Williams Technical Director.
Formula One World Championship, Rd15, Japanese Grand Prix, Practice, Suzuka, Japan, Friday, 5 October 2012 Remi Taffin (FRA), head of Renault Sport F1 track operations in the Press Conference
Formula One World Championship, Rd18, Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Practice, Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, UAE, Friday, 2 November 2012 Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Lotus.
Formula One World Championship, Rd1, Australian Grand Prix, Practice, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia, Friday, 15 March 2013 Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1.
Formula One World Championship, Rd1, Australian Grand Prix, Qualifying, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia, Saturday, 16 March 2013 Eric Boullier (FRA) Lotus F1 Team Principal.
Formula One Testing, Day 1, Jerez, Spain, Tuesday, 5 February 2013 Alan Permane (GBR) Lotus F1 Race Engineer.
Formula One World Championship, Rd2, Malaysian Grand Prix, Practice, Sepang, Malaysia, Friday, 22 March 2013 Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren.
Formula One World Championship, Rd2, Malaysian Grand Prix, Practice, Sepang, Malaysia, Friday, 22 March 2013 Sergio Perez (MEX) McLaren.
Formula One World Championship, Rd3, Chinese Grand Prix, Race Day, Shanghai, China, Sunday, 14 April 2013 Martin Whitmarsh (GBR) McLaren Chief Executive Officer.
Formula One World Championship, Rd1, Australian Grand Prix, Qualifying, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia, Saturday, 16 March 2013 Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Bahrain Grand Prix Preparations, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Thursday, 18 April 2013 Mark Webber (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB9.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Bahrain Grand Prix Preparations, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Thursday, 18 April 2013 Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Sauber.
Formula One World Championship, Rd1, Australian Grand Prix, Preparations, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, 14 March 2013 Esteban Gutierrez (MEX) Sauber.
Formula One World Championship, Rd1, Australian Grand Prix, Preparations, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, 14 March 2013 Tom McCullough (GBR) Sauber Head of Track Engineering.
Formula One Testing, Day 2, Barcelona, Spain, Friday, 1 March 2013 Jules Bianchi (FRA) Marussia F1 Team.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Bahrain Grand Prix, Qualifying, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Saturday, 20 April 2013 Max Chilton (GBR) Marussia F1 Team.
Formula One World Championship, Rd3, Chinese Grand Prix, Practice, Shanghai, China, Friday, 12 April 2013 John Booth (GBR) Marussia Racing Team Principal.
Formula One World Championship, Rd15, Japanese Grand Prix, Race, Suzuka, Japan, Sunday, 7 October 2012 Alexander Rossi (ITA) Caterham F1 Reserve Driver.
Formula One World Championship, Rd2, Malaysian Grand Prix, Practice, Sepang, Malaysia, Friday, 22 March 2013 Alexander Rossi (USA) Caterham F1 Reserve Driver.
Formula One Testing, Day 2, Barcelona, Spain, Friday, 1 March 2013 Charles Pic (FRA) Caterham.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Bahrain Grand Prix, Practice, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Friday, 19 April 2013 Charles Pic (FRA) Caterham F1 Team.
Formula One World Championship, Rd1, Australian Grand Prix, Preparations, Albert Park, Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, 14 March 2013 Giedo van der Garde (NDL) Caterham F1.
Formula One World Championship, Rd2, Malaysian Grand Prix, Preparations, Sepang, Malaysia, Thursday, 21 March 2013 Giedo van der Garde (NDL) Caterham.
Formula One World Championship, Rd2, Malaysian Grand Prix, Race, Sepang, Malaysia, Sunday, 24 March 2013

Round seven of the championship sees the paddock crossing the Atlantic to Montreal’s Isle Notre-Dame and the Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve for the Formula 1 Grand Prix du Canada 2013. Lewis Hamilton took victory for McLaren last season, but can he do the same for Mercedes this year? Those involved discuss their prospects for the race…

Paul di Resta, Force India
2012 Qualifying - 8th, 2012 Race - 11th

“We’ve been competitive on every track this year and that’s a credit to the team, so we expect to be at our usual level once again. It’s traditionally a track that has suited us, so we go there confident that we can fight towards the front once again. 100 races (as Force India) is a significant achievement and it’s great to see how much the team has grown during that time. It’s a credit to the commitment of the shareholders and hopefully we can give them something to smile about come Sunday evening. Circuit Gilles Villeneuve is an unusual track but tends to produce exciting racing with some really good overtaking opportunities. It’s tight, because it’s a street course, so it’s another track where there is no margin for error. Straight-line speed is important, as is a car that’s stable under braking and capable of riding the curbs well.”

Adrian Sutil, Force India
2012 Qualifying - n/a, 2012 Race - n/a

“Montreal is definitely one my favourite races on the calendar because it’s a great city. It’s also an interesting and unusual track, and it can be a long race with different scenarios and strategy options. I like the circuit, but for some reason I’ve never had good results there. Hopefully we can change that this year.”

Dr Vijay Mallya, Force India team principal
“The emotions of Monaco are still fresh in our memory as our attention turns to Montreal for the Canadian Grand Prix. Both our drivers and the team performed superbly on the streets of Monte Carlo and it is very satisfying to see us fifth in the Championship after a third of the season. The race in Monaco showed the sheer class of our two drivers, and probably helped silence some critics of the team. Adrian’s moves on two former World Champions will stay in our memories for a long time, and so will Paul’s determined performance as he went from 17th to ninth. I think we are now knocking on the door of our first podium finish since 2009, and it’s time to do that all-important step. Montreal would be a great place to do so - it is a track that favours overtaking and our car has shown the race pace to finish among the leaders, so everything is possible. I am proud of everyone in the team because we have achieved good results - and claimed 44 points - despite some very unfortunate occurrences. With a bit more luck, we would be even further ahead of McLaren: but the focus is on the future. We know our rivals will be more competitive in the next few rounds, but we have shown we can mix with the big teams and we intend to do so for the coming races too. The Canadian Grand Prix also marks the 100th Grand Prix for Sahara Force India. When we started back in 2008 we simply had the ambition to break out of Q1 and we dreamed of scoring points. Seeing where we stand today is therefore extremely rewarding and motivates us all to continue working just as hard for the next 100 races.”

Pirelli
Paul Hembery, Pirelli motorsport director

“Canada is always one of the most unpredictable races of the year and this is partly because it is so challenging for tyres, mostly due to the heavy braking and traction demands of the circuit. Coupled with a high degree of track evolution over the weekend, effective tyre management has always been a key to success in Montreal, right from when the circuit was inaugurated in the late 1970s. We’d expect two to three pit stops per car, but we’ll only be able to make a precise forecast after Friday once we’ve seen some running out on track. It’s a circuit where weather conditions often play a key role: our very first Canadian Grand Prix in 2011 actually turned out to be the longest race in Formula One history because of heavy rain and a subsequent race stoppage. Last year was dry, but we witnessed a new record with the seventh winner from seven races. Because of the high degree of tyre wear and degradation, we would expect to see a number of different strategies at work, as was the case last year - with teams deciding whether to go for a ‘sprint’ strategy or to do fewer stops and put the accent on endurance. Last year the ‘sprint’ approach won the race, but with so many different parameters at work, the teams will have to analyse the data - not to mention the weather forecast - very carefully before committing to any particular tactics. Often a flexible approach works best in Canada, so we can also expect many teams to be leaving their options open, allowing the drivers to really make the difference when it counts.”

Nico Rosberg, Mercedes
2012 Qualifying - 5th, 2012 Race - 6th

“The Canadian Grand Prix is always a great event as the fans in Montreal are so enthusiastic. The whole city really loves the race and it's such a lively place to be over the weekend. We receive so much support out in Montreal and it's great to see that enthusiasm. The circuit itself is one of my favourite tracks on the calendar and I love the challenge of driving there. It's a very difficult layout to drive because of the low downforce levels required for the long straights and it will be tough on the tyres. Monaco was a fantastic weekend for the team and I'm so proud of the victory that we achieved there. We'll be hoping to maintain that momentum in Canada this weekend and will be going all out for another strong performance.”

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes
2012 Qualifying - 2nd, 2012 Race - 1st

“The Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve has been a strong circuit for me and I've been lucky enough to win there three times in my career, including last season. It's always a great weekend in Montreal with a fun atmosphere in the city and at the track. The circuit itself is really special; it's very high-speed, great fun to drive and it's definitely a track where late braking helps. It's not too far off a Monaco-style circuit where you need a similar set-up to bounce off the kerbs so we should be quite competitive, although looking after the tyres will be our main challenge. There's a really good feeling in the team at the moment following Nico's win in Monaco and we're continuing to work hard to make sure we have the potential for more victories this season.”

Ross Brawn, Mercedes team principal
“The Canadian Grand Prix is always one of the most atmospheric races of the year and everyone looks forward to our annual visit to Montreal. The high-speed characteristics of the Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve make for a real set-up challenge where engine power, brakes and good tyre management are the key to having a successful weekend. The last race in Monaco was a very special weekend for our team, and moved us substantially closer to the top three in the constructors' championship, but we know the hard work that lies ahead. Both Lewis and Nico have spent time in the factory with us since Monaco and with Paddy Lowe starting at Brackley today, I'm confident that all efforts are being made to sustain that level of performance.”

Toto Wolff, Mercedes team executive director
“We enjoyed a fantastic weekend in Monaco but, as I have said before, yesterday's home runs don't win tomorrow's games. We will be heading to Montreal this week with realistic expectations about what we can achieve. The high-speed circuit will definitely suit our Mercedes-Benz engine. Our car has been on pole position for the last four races, which shows our basic speed, so the focus in that time has been on improving our performance on Sunday afternoons. We managed this in Monaco, partly thanks to the unique characteristics of the circuit. This weekend will give us a more representative indication of how much progress we have made.”

Pastor Maldonado, Williams
2012 Qualifying - 17th, 2012 Race - 13th

“Montreal is definitely one of the most challenging tracks, especially when it rains as the downpours can be quite heavy. Obviously this causes changes to the strategy regarding pit stops and tyres. It also makes life much more challenging on the track because there are certain places where puddles form. In the past there has been a high frequency of safety cars during the race as well which will again affect race strategy. The track itself starts off very dirty on Friday because it’s only used once a year and it isn't really until the Saturday qualifying session that more grip can be found after we have had a chance to lay down more rubber. It’s interesting to drive on a track that changes so much as the weekend unfolds and the layout feels a bit like a street circuit which gets the adrenaline pumping. The whole city comes alive during the week of the Grand Prix and the atmosphere is one of the best all year so I really enjoy visiting Canada.”

Valtteri Bottas, Williams
2012 Qualifying - n/a, 2012 Race - n/a

“This will be my first time driving at Montreal and I’m looking forward to the challenge. It’s similar to the last race in Monaco in some respects, being a street circuit with a number of the corners and straights very close to the walls. The challenge is therefore to quickly find the cars limit and use as much of the circuit as you can, without taking too many risks. I’m particularly looking forward to the last corner, the wall of champions, which is very iconic. As this is my first time driving the track, Friday morning is going to be important to get the right car setup. There are long straights on this circuit so good traction is needed out of the slow speed chicanes, and you also need really good straight line speed, especially in the race. If you have better straight line speed than your competitors, the racing will be much easier for you to defend and overtake so we need to find a good compromise between downforce and drag.”

Mike Coughlan, Williams technical director
“The track is quite challenging with high speed straights and tight slow corners, which makes it very hard on brakes. Montreal has the lowest pit loss time of the year, at 15.9 seconds, which typically favours higher stop strategies, however there is a relatively high chance of getting a safety car around here. The track roughness is the lowest of the season and coupled with low tyre energy this can lead to a high tendency towards tyre graining. Weather is also a factor here as the low temperatures can cause trouble for the tyres due to the circuit layout and rain is always a threat. We had a difficult weekend in Monaco, but we did find a good direction for development which we will be carrying through to Canada with a number of new parts. There is still a lot of work to do, but we are confident that everyone in the team is pushing hard to get us back to where we need to be.”

Remi Taffin, Renault Sport F1 head of track operations
“The Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve has the quickest single lap time of the season, taking just 75 seconds on average. This is due in part to the relatively short length, but also to the long straights of the Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve. The straights are connected by tight hairpins where the cars brake down to a little under 60 km/h, so the RS27 must combine good top end power with effective engine braking and pick up on the entry and exits to the corners so acceleration is not compromised down the straights.”

Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus
2012 Qualifying - 12th, 2012 Race - 8th

“I have won (in Canada) which was pretty good, but I have experienced some setbacks there as well. Many times the race has been quite a lottery as there seem to be different things which affect it. The weather can change a lot, sometimes the tyres or the track aren’t working very well, sometimes there are a lot of safety cars, or sometimes another driver runs into the back of you when you’re waiting at a red light. As for the place itself, I’ve always liked Montréal. It is one of the nicest cities we visit all year. What do you need for a good result in Canada? A good car. Like at every circuit you need to get the set-up exactly right. You need a well-balanced chassis in the medium downforce configuration and you don’t want to be too hard on brakes as there’s a lot of aggressive braking there. It’s something I quite enjoy, the stop and go style of the circuit. Qualifying is important at every circuit, but not as essential as it was in Monaco to get a good result. It’s not easy to get past, but there are one or two places to overtake.”

Romain Grosjean, Lotus
2012 Qualifying - 7th, 2012 Race - 2nd

“Last year we had a fantastic result at this race and we’ll certainly be trying for a fantastic result once more. For sure it will be a bit more difficult with the (10-place grid) penalty, but we’ll take the challenge and do the very best we can. The track is interesting; not an easy one to learn, but as we say most of the time if you have a good result then you like the track! I’d certainly like to finish this year’s race on the podium again; that would be a good record to maintain. I enjoy the sensation of being close to the walls; although as I learnt this year in Monaco… I don’t enjoy the sensation of being too close to the walls! Montréal is different from Monaco as there are some long straights and big braking moments. The track surface can also present challenges as we’ve seen in past seasons, so it will be interesting to see what the grip level is like this year. Finally, the weather in Montréal can be quite changeable as we’ve seen many times. I’m sure it’ll be a challenging and exciting Grand Prix. The city’s great too. People speak French, the place is lively, there are some great restaurants and everybody is really welcoming.”

Eric Boullier
“We did well (in Canada) last year and it’s good in terms of the memories, but that doesn’t mean we’ll necessarily do well there this year. What we do know is that this year’s car is strong and has performed well on all different types of track layout, so it’s reasonable to expect a good weekend in Canada. I don’t think it will be an easy weekend, but we’ll be disappointed if both cars aren’t close to - or on - the podium.

Alan Permane, Lotus trackside operations director
“Montréal is the first circuit we run at with a medium downforce level. Monaco is super high and everywhere else we’ve visited so far is high, so it will be interesting to validate our performance with lower downforce levels on the car. There are similarities to Monaco; no real high speed corners, with most turns taken in first or second gear and the kerbs used for the majority of them. As most of the corners are chicanes, you have a set-up trade-off between sufficient roll stiffness to allow the driver to have a sharp car for change of direction, but with suspension soft enough to ride over the kerbs. The track used to be very bumpy - especially under braking - but recent resurfacing has improved this enormously.

“It’s the highest brake energy circuit of the year, but this won’t pose any significant problems. In years gone by we would have spent a lot of the weekend focusing on brake wear and ensuring we weren’t running too hot. Brake disc development over the past five years means this isn’t an issue or concern anymore. Our focus will be ensuring the brake temperatures are in the optimal range for operation and ensuring the brakes are matched at both front and rear for stability.

“Traditionally this circuit is fairly easy on tyres thanks to a smooth track surface. We’ll use Pirelli’s super soft and medium compounds to the original, non-revised 2013 constructions for the race. In the practice sessions we will have an opportunity to sample some development tyres; two sets per driver with a new rear construction.

“Last year was a mixture of one and two stop strategies and it’s reasonable to expect a similar approach this year; depending on the conditions experienced in the race of course. For Romain we will be looking at all the options and seeing if there’s anything different we can do to help vault him up the order, as he will be starting out of position thanks to his penalty. We went well with both cars last year and there’s nothing to suggest we shouldn’t go well this year.

“(In terms of updates) we have a revised aero package, with track specific front and rear wings as well as an update to the floor. There aren’t too many changes for this race, but looking ahead to the subsequent Grand Prix we have a revised bodywork package for Silverstone.”

Jenson Button, McLaren
2012 Qualifying - 10th, 2012 Race - 16th

“I’ve always enjoyed the Canadian Grand Prix – Montreal is one of the nicest cities on the calendar, we’re always made to feel welcome by the Quebecois, and it’s a race that everyone in Formula 1 looks forward to. Like Monaco, the Canadian Grand Prix can be something of an enjoyable lottery – but whereas Monaco is a low-speed, high-grip place, the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve is the opposite: high-speed and low-grip. It's a mix that always comes together to provide the fans with great racing, which is another reason why it’s become one of the most popular races of the year. Going back to Canada always brings back happy memories of my race there in 2011. Coming through from last to first really does show that anything’s possible in Formula 1. While we won’t be heading to Montreal with a winning package, we’re making steady progress, and there’s always that added motivation that you can pull off a surprising result at this race. I’m looking forward to a great weekend in Canada.”

Sergio Perez, McLaren
2012 Qualifying - 15th, 2012 Race - 3rd

“There may not be much to show from Monaco, but it was another positive race for me – we had stronger pace throughout the weekend, and I felt that I raced hard and fairly, earning my positions the hard way – by competing for, and winning, them on the track. There are plenty of positives to take forward to Canada. It’s a race I enjoy – I finished on the podium there last year; and I feel like the team is bringing performance to the car at every race. Although we’re still not where we need to be, I hope the Montreal weekend will be another step. At the very least, I think we can have a good weekend – it’s a race that can reward a fighter because it’s often so unpredictable. For me, racing in Canada is always special because it’s one of the three races closest to my home in Mexico. As in Austin last year, I hope there’ll be plenty of Mexican fans travelling up to Montreal to support me during my first Canadian Grand Prix for Vodafone McLaren Mercedes.”

Martin Whitmarsh, McLaren team principal
“McLaren has always gone well in Canada – we’ve won 13 Canadian Grands Prix – and while we’re not heading to Montreal next week with a realistic shot at victory, we well know that this is a race where an unexpected result is always possible. The Canadian Grand Prix is one of the highlights of the Formula 1 calendar, and a race that the whole paddock enjoys. It’s a showcase for F1 at its best – the track has a natural flow that encourages bold driving, but which punishes mistakes with narrow run-offs and uncompromising concrete walls. The track surface is abrasive and relatively gripless, and the long back straight is perfect for lengthy slipstreaming battles and overtaking. In addition, the Canadian and North American fans are passionate and knowledgeable about the sport – it’s one of those races that’s packed-out from Thursday to Sunday, and filled with a varied and exciting support race timetable. It’s one of the best races of the year.”

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull
2012 Qualifying - 1st, 2012 Race - 4th

“Why do I like the Canadian Grand Prix? The circuit has a nice rhythm and it’s one of the best races we have all year. The atmosphere and fans are great, the whole city lives F1 for the whole week and that makes us feel very special. I like it. Obviously one of the craziest moments was in 2011. There was so much rain; I haven’t seen that much rain carry on for so long since! During the race we had a big break and were in the lead. The race was difficult and with half a lap to go, I made my first mistake of the race which cost us the win. But that’s racing and it’s probably great for the fans to watch when they don’t know who is going to win until the last moment.”

Mark Webber, Red Bull
2012 Qualifying - 4th, 2012 Race - 7th

“Canada is a really good race. It’s a popular Grand Prix for fans and drivers; the fans are very passionate and it’s always an interesting Grand Prix because it’s another street circuit. There are some very good restaurants in Montreal, the whole city stops for the race and the atmosphere is a bit more traditional I would say. I haven’t been on the podium there yet, so I need to sort that out. It’s not a favourite memory, but I remember when (Nigel) Mansell retired on the last lap when he was in the lead. Also when Jean Alesi won his only race there, that was good.”

Nico Hulkenberg, Sauber
2012 Qualifying - 13th, 2012 Race - 12th

“The Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve is one of my favourites. It’s a challenging track with a mixture of a permanent racetrack and a street circuit. It has some tight sections that don’t allow for any mistakes. I like the whole layout and, in particular, the kerbs. The atmosphere on Île Notre-Dame is always great and the whole city of Montréal welcomes Formula One. It’s a very nice Grand Prix, and I’m looking forward to it.”

Esteban Gutierrez, Sauber
2012 Qualifying - n/a, 2012 Race - n/a

“So far I have driven once at the track on Île Notre-Dame, and that was in 2007 in Formula BMW. It went quite well with one podium finish and a fourth place. It’s a really nice circuit and I like it a lot. The track is slippery and tyre management will yet again be very important, which gives us an opportunity to put a good strategy together. Obviously overtaking will be easier than in Monaco, which can benefit us. It’s hard to judge how competitive we will be, as it will also depend on the weather. Hopefully with better conditions we can have a more consistent weekend, which will help us to progress and make the most of our potential.”

Tom McCullough, Sauber head of track engineering
“The Montréal circuit is very narrow and has walls very close to the track. It typically produces one of the most exciting races of the season and a Safety Car is highly likely. The circuit is comprised of long straights and slow speed corners, which encourage overtaking, and also contribute to it being one of the hardest for the brakes. The circuit efficiency requires a lower drag level rear wing compared to Monaco, but you still need a strong car in low speed corners. This year the medium compound replaces the soft as the prime tyre, while the option remains as the super soft. Pirelli has also announced we will have a new rear construction to evaluate on Friday before its planned race introduction at Silverstone.”

Jules Bianchi, Marussia
2012 Qualifying - n/a, 2012 Race - n/a

“I was hoping for better things at my home race last weekend but now I am fully focused on the races ahead, not looking back. Canada is one of the races I have been most looking forward to all season and I have heard a lot of things about the track and the fantastic city of Montreal. Having been in the simulator this week I feel excited for the weekend, although I think we can expect to be challenged by the demands of the circuit characteristics. The last race was the first retirement of the season for myself and the Team, which is disappointing after such a good run of 10 car finishes in 10 races until then. It seems to be an isolated problem, so we look forward to getting back to full reliability and continuing to push forwards.”

Max Chilton, Marussia
2012 Qualifying - n/a, 2012 Race - n/a

“I’m looking forward to my Canadian Grand Prix debut and returning to the learning experience of an unknown track. From what I know and have seen in the simulator, this is one of those circuits that will keep the drivers and the engineers fully occupied by the engineering challenge, as there is such a careful balance to strike between the low and higher downforce sections of the track, at the same time as managing brakes and tyres. After a good result in Monaco I am hopeful that we can carry that momentum forward and enjoy a positive weekend.”

John Booth, Marussia team principal
“Everyone at the Marussia F1 Team thoroughly enjoys the Canadian Grand Prix experience, although the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve has not necessarily favoured our car on our three previous visits. We are hopeful that we can turn that corner in Montreal next weekend. It has been quite a tight turnaround after Monaco to prepare the cars for the freight but they leave this weekend and in the intervening period before we arrive we’ll continue to evaluate a frustrating Monaco and try to get a good head start for the race ahead. Canada always throws up quite a few challenges - a technically demanding track, variable weather and the rather more unusual concern over groundhogs. The one thing we were pleased with in the last race was our result and relative performance, so we’ll be happy to continue building on that next weekend.”

Alexander Rossi, Caterham reserve driver
“After Monaco I was home in the States for the first time since January, preparing for my FP1 session at the Canadian GP, and then for the start of my Le Mans work straight after Montreal! Looking back, Monaco wasn’t a great weekend for us in GP2 with Caterham Racing, but we’ll bounce back at Silverstone. We know the areas that we need to improve the situation.

“Returning to F1 action is obviously another important step in the plan I’ve worked over a decade for and I take all the opportunities I get very seriously. This will be my first outing in the CT03 and on the 2013 Pirelli tyres in F1 and it’s good that my 2013 F1 debut is on North American soil, in front of a crowd who are seriously passionate about F1 and really know what our sport is all about. I’ve raced and won in Montreal back in Formula BMW and I enjoy the circuit a lot - it will be a special feeling to play an active role in the race weekend with the team.

“Even though FP1 sessions always seem to be over in the blink of an eye, it’ll be good to play an important part in the team’s work on track. I was last in an F1 car in the CT02 2012 car in Abu Dhabi, last November for the young driver test so I’m looking forward to see how far the car has progressed since then. This year for the F1 team I’ve done aero testing, simulation work and I drove at the team’s filming day, so this will be a good session for me to use what I learnt about the car in the sim and the aero tests as a comparison to help the team progress this weekend. It will be all about working to the run plan for the session and helping the team set the car up for the race drivers for the rest of the weekend.

“I leave Montreal on Friday evening, straight after FP2 and head back to Europe for the first Le Mans sessions. That’s another boxed ticked on my list of things for my CV. It’s great to be taking part in one of the great races with a team that’s already been successful in endurance racing, and to help a bunch of Caterham guys I already know well. Like F1, my aim in the first few days with the Le Mans team will be to learn as much I can and build up to the performance, adding value where it counts. It’s a huge honour to be able to take part and it’s something I’ll remember for ever, but first my main priority is F1.”

Charles Pic, Caterham
2012 Qualifying - 23rd, 2012 Race - 20th

“Straight after Monaco it’s on to another French speaking race as we go to Montreal for the Canadian Grand Prix. Last year was my first time racing in Canada and I have to say it was one of the best races of the year, maybe not so much for the final result but for the atmosphere on track which was really good. We go to a few races where the track is full of fans from Thursday morning, and Montreal is one of those. I guess having Jacques and Gilles Villeneuve as locals to have supported in the past means F1 is very special to fans in Montreal, but whatever the reasons, they love F1!

“On track it’s a very good challenge. It’s a semi-street circuit, with the barriers very close for most of the lap, and it’s a very technical circuit. The track surface is smooth and on Friday morning there’s very little grip. It does evolve over the weekend but it’s still hard on tyres all weekend so managing deg levels is going to be even more important than normal. It’s also very hard on brakes - there’s a couple of very heavy braking zones and you need to be able to really attack those to get the best lap time in, so we’ll also be working a lot in the practice sessions on maximising braking stability and, depending on what the weather does, brake cooling.

“You also need to be able to attack the kerbs, both to maintain speed and to save time, so that’ll be another area we’ll look at in FP1 and FP2, making sure we can really hit the kerbs hard without losing stability and balance. If you get all that right it’s a very satisfying feeling when you get to the end of the lap as it’s quick, a lap that feels really good in an F1 car!”

Giedo van der Garde, Caterham
2012 Qualifying - n/a, 2012 Race - n/a

“Next up it’s Canada, a track I’ve never raced at but one I went to last year with Caterham as reserve driver. I sat in on all the briefings and debriefs last year so I have quite a bit of information about what it’s going to be like from 2012, and I’ve spent quite a bit of time on my sim at home trying the track, but you obviously don’t really know what it’s like until you drive around it, but it will only take a couple of laps to get used to it.

“What I do remember from last year was how hardcore the fans are in Montreal! We have a couple of big North American sponsors, so the team had a lot of guests in the paddock and in the grandstands, but I remember that from early on Thursday morning the whole place was packed! In the city itself it was the same - there’s one street where the whole place is shut down for the race weekend and we had a team dinner there on the Saturday night. It was a fantastic atmosphere, a lot like it is at home in Holland for big sports events, so I felt really comfortable there and am excited about getting back, this time to race!

“On track I think it’ll be interesting to see where we are after Monaco. I was glad to bring the car home, but after the best Saturday of the year so far we obviously wanted to finish higher up. Even with that, there were some good signs in the race that we are making decent progress. Personally, for me it was another step in the learning curve, and for the team in general we saw that we’d fixed the rear wing issue we’d found in Barcelona, and had enough pace to get the car into Q2 and to record one of the fastest laps in the race in the early stages. Montreal is a medium to low downforce track and with the constant updates we’re making to the package we took to Spain, I think we could be ok.”

More to follow.

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