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Monaco preview quotes - Marussia, Williams, Toro Rosso & more 20 May 2014

Boats in Monaco harbour.
Formula One World Championship, Rd6, Monaco Grand Prix, Preparations, Monte-Carlo, Monaco, Wednesday, 22 May 2013 Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 talks with the media.
Formula One Testing, Day One, Barcelona, Spain, Tuesday, 13 May 2014 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1.
Formula One Testing, Day Two, Barcelona, Spain, Wednesday, 14 May 2014 Paddy Lowe (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 Executive Director (Technical).
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Chinese Grand Prix, Qualifying, Shanghai, China, Saturday, 19 April 2014 Toto Wolff (AUT) Mercedes AMG F1 Director of Motorsport.
Formula One World Championship, Rd3, Bahrain Grand Prix, Race, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Sunday, 6 April 2014 Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing.
Formula One Testing, Day Two, Barcelona, Spain, Wednesday, 14 May 2014 Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing celebrates on the podium.
Formula One World Championship, Rd5, Spanish Grand Prix, Race, Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, 11 May 2014 (L to R): Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus talks to Ayao Komatsu (JPN) Lotus Race Engineer on the grid.
Formula One World Championship, Rd5, Spanish Grand Prix, Race, Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, 11 May 2014 Pastor Maldonado (VEN) Lotus F1 Team.
Formula One World Championship, Rd5, Spanish Grand Prix, Qualifying, Barcelona, Spain, Saturday, 10 May 2014 Federico Gastaldi (ARG) Lotus F1 Team Deputy Team Principal.
Formula One Testing, Day One, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Wednesday, 9 April 2014 Nick Chester (GBR) Lotus Technical Director.
Formula One Testing, Day Two, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Friday, 28 February 2014 Adrian Sutil (GER) Sauber.
Formula One World Championship, Rd2, Malaysian Grand Prix, Preparations, Sepang, Malaysia, Thursday, 27 March 2014 Esteban Gutierrez (MEX) Sauber.
Formula One World Championship, Rd5, Spanish Grand Prix, Qualifying, Barcelona, Spain, Saturday, 10 May 2014 Giampaolo Dall'ara, Sauber Head of Track Engineering.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 13, Italian Grand Prix, Practice, Monza, Italy, Friday, 7 September 2012 Nico Hulkenberg (GER) Force India F1 on the grid.
Formula One World Championship, Rd5, Spanish Grand Prix, Race, Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, 11 May 2014 Sergio Perez (MEX) Force India.
Formula One World Championship, Rd5, Spanish Grand Prix, Qualifying, Barcelona, Spain, Saturday, 10 May 2014 Dr. Vijay Mallya (IND) Force India Formula One Team Owner and Gerard Lopez (FRA) Genii Capital / Lotus Team Principal on the grid.
Formula One World Championship, Rd5, Spanish Grand Prix, Race, Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, 11 May 2014 Kamui Kobayashi (JPN) Caterham.
Formula One World Championship, Rd5, Spanish Grand Prix, Preparations, Barcelona, Spain, Thursday, 8 May 2014 The crashed car of Kamui Kobayashi (JPN) Caterham CT05 is recovered.
Formula One Testing, Day One, Barcelona, Spain, Tuesday, 13 May 2014 Marcus Ericsson (SWE) Caterham on the drivers parade.
Formula One World Championship, Rd5, Spanish Grand Prix, Race, Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, 11 May 2014 Paul Hembery (GBR) Pirelli Motorsport Director.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Chinese Grand Prix, Practice, Shanghai, China, Friday, 18 April 2014 Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren.
Formula One Testing, Day Three, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Saturday, 1 March 2014 Kevin Magnussen (DEN) McLaren.
Formula One Testing, Day Two, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Thursday, 20 February 2014 Eric Boullier (FRA) McLaren Racing Director.
Formula One Testing, Day Two, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Thursday, 20 February 2014 Jean-Eric Vergne (FRA) Scuderia Toro Rosso.
Formula One Testing, Jerez, Spain, Day One, Tuesday, 28 January 2014 Daniil Kvyat (RUS) Scuderia Toro Rosso.
Formula One Testing, Day Two, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Friday, 28 February 2014 Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams.
Formula One World Championship, Rd2, Malaysian Grand Prix, Preparations, Sepang, Malaysia, Thursday, 27 March 2014 Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams in the Press Conference.
Formula One World Championship, Rd2, Malaysian Grand Prix, Preparations, Sepang, Malaysia, Thursday, 27 March 2014 Rob Smedley (GBR) Williams Head of Vehicle Performance.
Formula One Testing, Day One, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Wednesday, 9 April 2014 Jules Bianchi (FRA) Marussia F1 Team on the drivers parade.
Formula One World Championship, Rd5, Spanish Grand Prix, Race, Barcelona, Spain, Sunday, 11 May 2014 Max Chilton (GBR) Marussia F1 Team,
Formula One World Championship, Rd5, Spanish Grand Prix, Qualifying, Barcelona, Spain, Saturday, 10 May 2014 John Booth (GBR) Marussia Racing Team Principal in the Press Conference.
Formula One World Championship, Rd5, Spanish Grand Prix, Practice, Barcelona, Spain, Friday, 9 May 2014

With five rounds of the championship already complete, the F1 paddock moves on to Monte Carlo for one of the most glamorous and prestigious events of the year, the Formula 1 Grand Prix de Monaco 2014. Those involved discuss their prospects for the race every driver wants to win...

Mercedes
Lewis Hamilton
2013 Qualifying - 2nd, 2013 Race - 4th

“It's been a busy few weeks for me, both on track and away from it, but I'm pleased to be getting back to racing again next weekend. And what a place to get back to it! Monaco is just incredible to drive and any driver will tell you that's the race they want to win. So many great names become legends around this circuit. It's an honour to fight for your place amongst them and a real test of your skills behind the wheel. The last few races have been just incredible. I honestly never expected I'd win four consecutive Grands Prix in my career and I'd love to continue that run here. I've had some work to do in terms of getting the car exactly as I want it after the weekend in Spain: it was so close between our cars at the end and I need to keep pushing to find any extra edge I can. The car has been strong at every race so far and I'm sure it'll be the same in Monaco, so we should be set for an entertaining weekend.”

Nico Rosberg
2013 Qualifying - 1st, 2013 Race - 1st

“Monaco: my home town! Obviously, I associate many wonderful memories with this place. It's where I grew up and where I now live as an adult. But in sporting terms too, I have had some great moments there: in particular last year when I won there for the first time in my Formula One career. That was an absolutely incredible feeling. Driving a Formula One car there is simply fantastic and it's an event every driver looks forward to each year. Overall I was quite pleased with the last race weekend in Barcelona. Disappointed, of course, not to have taken the win but happy that the team achieved another one-two finish. The Championship battle is very close and to re-gain the advantage at my home race would be fantastic, so I'll be pushing harder than ever to make that happen. I had a productive day of testing in Barcelona where we made some good progress with braking and starts: two areas that I feel are costing me time at the moment. Hopefully that will give me the extra edge next weekend. It should be an exciting weekend and I can't wait to get started.”

Paddy Lowe, Mercedes team executive director (technical)
“We're very pleased with the result in Barcelona. It's an amazing achievement to take five wins in a row and even more so to have four consecutive one-two finishes. It's a tremendous endorsement of all the hard work from everyone at Brackley, Brixworth and Stuttgart. Another highlight was to once more see a great demonstration of the level of competition between our two drivers. To be separated by just six tenths at the flag proves once again just how evenly matched they are. Monaco, of course, is a very different prospect. It's a tough event both logistically and practically for the team and also highly demanding for the drivers. Building momentum through each session is crucial and the unforgiving nature of the track can make even the smallest mistake a significant one relative to your weekend as a whole. Any track time lost around Monaco is a missed opportunity, more so than at any other circuit, so it's crucial to get it right from the very first lap on Thursday. We won there last year with Nico which was a fantastic result at the time and Lewis has also been impressive there in the past, including taking a victory of his own in 2008. It's a driver's circuit and both Lewis and Nico are on top form, so we're expecting an exciting contest. The circuit itself is so unique that it's difficult to predict which teams will be strong at this race. Certainly, we wouldn't expect to have the same margin of advantage as we enjoyed in Barcelona. But we're nonetheless hopeful of another good performance.”

Toto Wolff, head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport
“We came away from Barcelona with plenty of positive points and the most encouraging was that our development package worked, which allowed us to maintain a healthy gap to our rivals on that circuit. But Monaco is a different story every year. It's a place that rewards driveability, confidence and a strong qualifying performance. Most of all, though, it's about avoiding mistakes: the drivers have no room for error and neither does the team. We have been pushing hard since the last race and nobody will be backing off in our teams at Brackley, Brixworth and Stuttgart. We are heading to Monaco with our feet on the ground because it is a place that can bite you if you get over-confident. We have a quick Silver Arrow and Lewis and Nico are specialists around the streets. But we need to bring every piece of the puzzle together if we want to maintain our run of success next weekend.”

Red Bull
Sebastian Vettel
2013 Qualifying - 3rd, 2013 Race - 2nd

"Monaco is one of my favourite tracks, it's an absolute challenge. You cannot afford to make one single mistake, because you would easily crash into the railings. Overtaking is only possible with taking an extreme risk. The best place to overtake is before the harbour chicane when we exit the narrow tunnel at 300kph and race towards the first gear chicane. Other than that, it's all about patience in Monaco and hoping for complete reliability as the suspension and drive are massively in demand around this extreme, uneven rollercoaster of a circuit - it's immense. In the perfect situation, you would have had a good quali and start from the front. Monaco offers some really great memories with the team, especially when everyone ended up jumping in the pool and one year Mark and I even ended up in the harbour. It's very special in Monaco and it's the race where we have our Energy Station with its larger outside area floating in the harbour, it's a great, great event."

Daniel Ricciardo
2013 Qualifying - 12th, 2013 Race - DNF

"In Monte Carlo it's impossible to do that calm, detached racing driver thing. Every year I'm determined I'm going to approach the weekend in a coldly logical way, and every year I end up bouncing up and down and getting excited. It's just amazing. The atmosphere in town and down at the harbour, the history of the race, the massive crowd, it's a real buzz. The track is properly old-school. Driving an F1 car anywhere is special - the speed, the power and the acceleration just blows you away - but here it's... cool. I know there's that quote about racing at Monaco being like riding a bicycle around your bathroom - well when I was a kid I used to love riding my little bike around inside the house. It was more fun, there were more obstacles and a bit more danger. That really is what this is like. Experience definitely helps: the driver can make a big difference if he knows the tricks that a fast lap demands."

Lotus
Romain Grosjean
2013 Qualifying - 13th, 2013 Race - DNF

"It's an exciting and glamorous Grand Prix and always a step into the unknown, because it's difficult to predict how well each car will work there. It's a crazy week with all the focus and attention, but everyone loves Monaco. As a driver you have to stay calm and relaxed on a track that doesn't allow for any mistakes. I've been super quick in the past, but also hit the walls! There will be less grip than in the past, so we will have to be careful with the right foot. The emphasis at Monaco is on low speed corners, which is not our greatest strength, but the team worked with Monaco in mind during the Barcelona test. We'll do our best with set-up and of course Monaco is less engine dependent than most circuits, which is better for us. It was nice not only to score points in Barcelona, but also to be fifth on the grid in qualifying - if we can do that again in Monaco it'll be very good for us..."

Pastor Maldonado
2013 Qualifying - 16th, 2013 Race - DNF

"I really love [Monaco]. I've been very quick in the past and I think it is one of the most special weekends of the year. The car has made a big step forward from where we were, [which] I think is a great boost for everyone at Enstone and of course as a driver it gives me more confidence in the car so I can aim to achieve better results. If you think about where we were and where we are now it is an incredible step forward – particularly when the other teams are moving forward with their development too. It's a true testament to the team's capabilities and I hope we can start to get the results on track that we so deserve."

Federico Gastaldi, Lotus deputy team principal
"Monaco is so unique and distinct; you really have to be there to understand it. The track is such a challenge for the drivers and the engineers, and the barriers are so close to punish even the slightest mistake. I'm not a betting man and I have been to enough Monaco Grands Prix to know that anything can happen there… and it usually does. Of course the cars should be really spectacular there with the added torque this year and it will be easy for the drivers to make mistakes. This could bite us or it could help us because overtaking is so difficult. Our only targets are to continue the upward curve in performance and reliability and to ensure we are in the best position possible to score points. We want to get back to where we were in 2012 and 2013, which is challenging consistently at the front of the field."

Nick Chester, Lotus technical director
"Monaco is a bit of a strange place - a one off - so it's always dangerous to assume your car will be good there. But I think it will suit the E22 and we should go fairly well. We'll also be bringing some specific parts aimed at giving us more downforce at what is the highest downforce track of the year. Other new parts will help tune the car for the bumpy and low speed track characteristics. The parts we've tested so far look good and we'll also have a new fuel from Total which should further improve power and driveability. There will also be a small modification to the cooling system and there are other aerodynamic developments aimed at making the car more stable."

Sauber
Adrian Sutil
2013 Qualifying - 8th, 2013 Race - 5th

"The Monaco Grand Prix is a very nice event every year. I really like the track. For us, the most important aspect will be that our car works well and we can achieve a good performance. My objective is to travel back home with some points in my pocket. Looking back, I have good memories from the races in Monte Carlo as I collected some points almost every year. Last year it was an exciting race for me which I finished in fifth position. It is always a special Grand Prix, and I am looking forward to it."

Esteban Gutierrez
2013 Qualifying - 19th, 2013 Race - 13th

"The street circuit in Monaco is a very special track and one of my favourites on the calendar. As the track has many slow speed corners, we need to have a stable car. Our focus will be to get things sorted out and to make sure we are on target. What I like the most in Monte Carlo is driving on the narrow track between the guardrails. It is very challenging as you don't have a lot of space, and for a perfect lap you get very close to the barriers. The closer you get, the more you are pushing to the limit, so using every centimetre of the track. It is very exciting and racing on the streets of Monte Carlo is always a different kind of feeling."

Giampaolo Dall'Ara, Sauber head of track engineering
"The race in Monaco has a unique character and it's a real challenge for drivers and engineers. Our main focus for lap times will be on mechanical grip and rear end stability. The power unit has a lesser relevance than in most of the other circuits, however, good torque progression and general driveability will make a difference. We are confident of having made a further step forward at the test in Barcelona, so we will be introducing some updates to the aerodynamic package and the rear suspension. In line with what has happened in the past, Pirelli has allocated the Soft and SuperSoft compounds to the event. In the last couple of years we've been witnessing some strong pace management in the race in order to minimise the number of pit stops, possibly bringing it down to a single one. The lack of overtaking opportunities around the circuit make a good qualifying very relevant."

Force India
Nico Hulkenberg
2013 Qualifying - 11th, 2013 Race - 11th

"It's the event of the year. Your heartbeat goes up when you arrive there and walk over the bridge into the pits. The place looks amazing with the buildings, the scenery and the mountains. Of course the biggest thrill is driving the track because it's so unique and gives you the biggest excitement of the year. In terms of precision it's right up there with Singapore as the toughest race of the year. You never get a break during the lap; you are always working hard because it's corner after corner. Even the straights are really short and it's high-speed for such a narrow track. I particularly enjoy the swimming pool area, which is very quick, and the two right-hand corners before the tunnel. I think it will be a normal track for us. As far as the pecking order is concerned, it's very tight and competitive at the moment so we need to keep working hard and keep developing."

Sergio Perez
2013 Qualifying - 7th, 2013 Race - 16th

"It's a big challenge and I have always believed it's a circuit where ýthe driver can really make a difference. So you always have the chance to do something special there. It's not the most difficult lap of the year, but you have to always keep your concentration. I don't believe that there will be a major surprise and I expect the same teams to be at the front. It's hard to predict how strong we will be, but I hope we can continue our good form."

Dr Vijay Mallya, Force India team principal
"Monaco is one of the premier events of the year and hopefully we can perform well there - [in Barcelona] we brought some updates and worked hard to optimise them, but there is a bit more we can do to take full advantage of those parts in the coming races. Monaco is a track where you can take nothing for granted because you have to balance speed with respect for the barriers. It will be interesting with the new cars because it is so unforgiving and the drivers will have to be at their very best."

Caterham
Kamui Kobayashi
2013 Qualifying - n/a, 2013 Race - n/a

"Next it's Monaco, one of the most famous races in the world. I like the challenge of the circuit, I think every driver does, but there is so much going on all over Monaco for the whole week it's pretty intense. Sometimes you just need to focus on your job but that's almost impossible while the race week is on, so I like to do the best work I can for the team on track.

"Monaco's also one of the shortest tracks of the year, and because it's not a really high speed circuit it's one where the gap to the cars ahead is always less. That's obviously good for us as one of the smaller teams as it means we have a better chance to do something special and I think it would be a fair reward for us to have something to celebrate after a couple of tough last races. I know that everyone in the team is working even harder than ever to fight back from where we are right now – the amount of hard work and effort that's always put in is one of the things that most impresses me about our team whenever I'm on track or at the factory, and it's about time our luck changed.

"Even though we only tested for one day in Spain, we still achieved a lot there. We were doing more aero evaluations of the new parts we took to Barcelona and were also looking closely at why we couldn't get the tyres working over the whole weekend in Spain. The good news is that the tests allowed us to assess alternative setups that pointed to a very clear direction for future development so we can overcome the problems we had in Spain. I also want to thank the whole team for working even harder than ever to prepare the cars for Monaco after what was a pretty big accident I had at the end of day one - now we'll take everything we have to Monaco and aim for a much better weekend there."

Marcus Ericsson
2013 Qualifying - n/a, 2013 Race - n/a

"As a rookie Monaco is obviously one of the races you're most excited about, and I'm no different! I obviously have a lot of experience of racing there in GP2, I finished on the podium in 2012 with iSport, but racing F1 cars around Monaco is one of the things I've dreamed about ever since I first wanted to be in F1, and I can't wait to get started.

"It's also going to be a very special race for all Swedish fans as it's 40 years since Ronnie Peterson won in Monaco in 1974. It's a huge honour for me to be another Swedish F1 driver following in his footsteps, especially as he and I come from the same part of Sweden, and while I know we won't be competing for a win like he was, I want to do the best job I can to pay homage to him and his legacy. I've obviously been asked a lot about what Senna meant to me over the last few weeks, but I always say it's Ronnie that really inspired me, obviously not because I saw him race, but because where I'm from in Sweden, Kumla, Ronnie is the number one hero. We have a couple of very cool things planned to celebrate his memory over the race week and I'm sure it'll be emotional for the people who are in the paddock today who remember him. If I can give them something to cheer for, that would be pretty cool for them and our whole team.

"In GP2 the race week is obviously very different to F1 for the drivers, but I know that the one of the main things is to switch off all the distractions whenever I'm in the car and focus on doing the best job I can on track. I have a few events going on over the week, and I'm sure they'll be good, but really it's about giving ourselves the best chance to take advantage of anything that happens on track in quali and the race so that means making every lap count on Friday and Saturday. It's almost inevitable that there will be a higher retirement rate than we've seen in the last couple of races, and that may give us a chance, but we need to be there when it counts and that's what I want to focus on."

Pirelli
Paul Hembery, Pirelli motorsport director

“Monaco is obviously a showcase event for everyone involved in Formula One, with a unique atmosphere and a special challenge that you just don’t see anywhere else. The supersoft tyres make their debut in Monaco, which like all our 2014 slick tyres have new compounds and constructions this year, designed to improve their durability. Wear and degradation is traditionally very low in Monaco, so it’s possible to do the race with just one pit stop. However, that’s not always the quickest way, therefore strategy will as always play an important part: particularly with Monaco being such a difficult track to overtake on. This also increases the importance of qualifying. Any race strategy has to be flexible as there is a high probability of safety cars on the narrow circuit, so reading the race to make use of any potential opportunities exactly as they happen will once more be key to success.”

McLaren
Jenson Button
2013 Qualifying - 9th, 2013 Race - 6th

“Obviously, I’ve never driven a turbocharged F1 car around Monaco before - and I’m relishing the opportunity.

“More than any other 2014 race, I think this event will show us the most pronounced difference between ‘old F1’ and the new formula we have. There’s far less of an aerodynamic influence here - it’s just about bolting as much to the car as possible in a bid to find grip - so I think the engine’s influence will be greater.

“So, with less significance placed on aerodynamics, I hope we can enjoy a better race than our two previous outings in China and Spain. Monaco is such a special case - in every respect - I just hope we can string together a good weekend: we’ll need to get the absolute maximum from the car in qualifying and on the first lap to be in with a chance to put up a fair showing.

“I’m up for the challenge, and the whole team is doing a great job of staying strong and working flat-out to bring updates to every race - and Monaco is no exception.”

Kevin Magnussen
2013 Qualifying - n/a, 2013 Race - n/a

“It’s strange to come away from a Grand Prix having finished 12th and feel satisfied with my performance. But the Barcelona weekend taught me quite a lot about managing and setting my expectations, and, more importantly, it gave me the best opportunity so far this year to really get to grips with the MP4-29. And, had I not had that quali problem, I’m certain I’d have scored points.

“I’m happier with the car, not just in terms of my own driving, but also with the way I work with my engineers to set it up. We haven’t totally cracked it, but things are going in the right direction.

“My [World Series] race in Monaco last year was a bit of a missed opportunity - I didn’t hook it all together and ended up finishing only fourth - so, more than anything, I want to have a clean and constructive race this weekend. We don’t have the pace in the car to challenge at the front, but, wherever I am, I’m determined to make a fight of it.”

Eric Boullier, McLaren racing director
“The last three race weekends have been difficult for us, but the entire team is working flat-out to improve things.

“Although our drivers are coming at it from different angles - Jenson is a past winner, Kevin is making his Monaco debut - both are keen to see what they can do this weekend. Monaco is always a bit of a one-off, a racetrack on which you can sometimes achieve more than you can on more conventional circuits. As in its famous casino, you can sometimes collect if you play your luck.

“Of course, we’ll be relying on a little more than luck this weekend! One of the keys to getting a result at Monaco is the good work that goes on in the garage and the engineering truck. Regardless of our track performance, our mechanics have never tired in their bid to ensure our cars are well built, reliable and looking immaculate. Equally, our engineers and strategists have worked relentlessly to make sure that every ounce of performance makes it to the track.

“Monaco has its own unique demands in terms of car performance, too. Obviously, we’ll be bringing a track-specific package to this race - and to Canada too - but, at the moment, we’re not targeting any particular race as the start of an overall turnaround. We’re simply working hard to deliver iterative improvements to the car - we’re confident in that process, and hope it will start to reap dividends in the future.”

Toro Rosso
Jean-Eric Vergne
2013 Qualifying - 10th, 2013 Race - 8th

“It’s something of a home race for me, given there is no French Grand Prix on the calendar for the moment. Actually, I can really tell myself that I’m at home, because I stay in Menton for this race, which is really across the “border” in France! I have raced there twice in Formula One and both times I performed well. I think it is one of the hardest races and you should always arrive there in a humble state of mind and never expect anything just because things went well the previous year. I am not going there being overconfident. You have to work hard all weekend and not make any mistakes and it requires far higher levels of concentration from the beginning to the end of the weekend. We will certainly be busy in the cockpit this year, but by now we are used to all the new jobs we have to do in the car. I enjoy the weekend a lot, with everything that goes on, even if, as a driver, I live in a bubble over the weekend, not going to the Casino or eating out in restaurants. But it’s great fun to be racing in a place like this.”

Daniil Kvyat
2013 Qualifying - n/a, 2013 Race - n/a

“Monaco for me will be an absolutely new experience. Not only have I never raced there, I have never even been there on a visit. Of course, I have watched a lot of races from Monaco on TV and a lot of on-board footage. But it will really be a step into the unknown for me, even if I have now driven it on the simulator. In fact, I have never raced on any street circuit. I am really looking forward to the weekend, mainly from a driving point of view, but I also want to find out what it is that makes this race such a special event for all fans of motor sport.”

Williams
Felipe Massa
2013 Qualifying - 21st, 2013 Race - DNF

“I love Monaco. I live there so it's great to be able to go home and see the family and sleep in my own bed after each day in the car. I am luckier than most as this happens at two races for me (Monaco and Brazil). The track is amazing and steeped in history. We will need good stability for the circuit as it's so tight and traction is more important than top speed. The slow corners are very slow, but the track demands a lot of focus. The barriers are close, and it takes time getting use to driving right up against them, sometimes you can even touch them and still do a good lap. Monaco is a special place, there are no tracks like it on the calendar and that makes us enjoy it even more.”

Valtteri Bottas
2013 Qualifying - 14th, 2013 Race - 12th

“Qualifying in Monaco is the most important of the season as the design of the circuit makes it very hard to overtake in the race. Strategy is also important in the race as you want to make sure that no time or positions are lost during the pit stop, it will be hard to make those positions up. There is no room for mistakes in Monaco as the barriers will punish you. I am really confident driving there now that I have experience and so am looking forward to the race. It's also the closest thing I will have to a home Grand Prix as I live in Monaco, it will be nice to go from home in the morning.”

Rob Smedley, Williams head of vehicle performance
“Clearly Monaco is very different to where we have been so far this season. The race engineer plays a key part of the race weekend as they have to think a little outside the box and work differently in terms of car specification. This has taken up a lot of time preparing in the simulator. It's a race of attrition and small mistakes can hurt you badly. The whole team are flat out all weekend, ensuring all the finer details are covered and the approach is correct, if this all goes well then we should be able to get some good points. It's a very special place, Monaco, it's the last of its kind.”

Marussia
Jules Bianchi
2013 Qualifying - 20th, 2013 Race - DNF

“The Monaco Grand Prix is always very special, not least because it is really my home race. It is also nice to go there feeling optimistic for a positive result. We made some good improvements with our package during the test in Spain and I left there knowing that there was even more to come, so I am excited for the weekend. There is no track quite like Monaco. It’s a very distinctive challenge and extremely demanding; a real test of the driver. Last year I had a few problems and could not complete the race. I’m hoping for better things this time around and for the Team to be able to show more of the progress we have made.”

Max Chilton
2013 Qualifying - 22nd, 2013 Race - 14th

“Next to my home race at Silverstone, there’s no better atmosphere than at the Monaco Grand Prix; it’s electric. It’s perhaps the most demanding race on the calendar, but at the same time, a fantastic experience from start to finish and I really enjoy the track’s unique challenges. Last year I secured my best result of the season here, so I’ll be hoping for more of the same, if not better. We had a really good test last week and the progress was clear to see. Although we aren’t expecting the timesheets to read in quite the same way as the Barcelona test, what we can be encouraged by is the work we have done to improve the set-up of the car and we can now translate those improvements through to the next events, to help us achieve a realistic next step over the course of a race weekend.”

John Booth, Marussia team principal
“We head to Monaco off the back of a very successful two days of testing in Barcelona last week. Of course, the two circuits are very different, therefore plenty of homework has still been required to prepare for this race and the business of adapting our set-up developments to suit the very specific demands of this track will continue right the way through this week. On the one hand, this is an event that calls for plenty of preparation and focus; on the other hand, we have to place a great deal of faith in the skill of the drivers, as this forms a major part of a team’s overall performance in this race. This is the closest Jules gets to a home race, so it is a special weekend for him. Equally, Max secured a good result here last year and I’m sure he has every intention of repeating, if not improving, on that this time around. This is a tough and challenging weekend but one where the rewards can be significant if everything comes together. We are in a good place in development terms and it would be nice to see that progress continue in Monaco this weekend.”

Mattia Binotto, Scuderia Ferrari Engine & Electronics Deputy Director
“The Monaco Grand Prix is a special event on the calendar, not only for the fascinating and unusual location, but also for the technical characteristics of the track, which traditionally represent something unique in the season. This year, the challenge is made even more complex by the many innovations introduced by the 2014 Regulations. For example, with the same gear ratios throughout the season - then identical gears to tackle a fast track like Monza or a slow and tortuous circuit such as this - it’s impossible to intervene with those specific adaptations that were usually made for this race. With the current power unit then, there is an excess of torque available at low rpm, which requires a great deal of attention by the driver in managing the drivability of the car, not only while accelerating but also braking. Hence the teamwork becomes even more important in the optimisation of all parameters, to be able to take advantage of all the available potential, considering also that, unlike all the previous tracks, overtaking in Monaco has always been and will remain very difficult.”

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