Interview with Toyotas Jarno Trulli 04 Jul 2007
He may have enjoyed a better start to the season than Toyota team mate Ralf Schumacher, but Jarno Trulli certainly hit a stumbling block at last weekend's French Grand Prix.
After a trying race at Magny-Cours, Trulli reviews his performance and discusses his first-lap collision with Renaults Heikki Kovalainen
Q: You have had a very busy schedule this month, did you have time to relax before the French Grand Prix?
Jarno Trulli: It was a long hard trip to North America and then back to Silverstone for two days testing. Its quite difficult to be away from home for three weeks but I had a few days back with my family before France and it was good to relax a bit with my sons and my wife and also get a bit of sunshine! That was nice after such a long trip.
Q: We are now at the mid-point of the season - how do you judge the season so far?
JT: Well, we expected to be higher up the grid but since the start of the season the team has worked very hard, here at the track and also back at the factory, to improve the car. I have had some really good races - in Bahrain I drove one of the best races of my career to finish seventh and I enjoyed the fight very much. Indianapolis was also a very good performance to get sixth place, a better result than we expected before the race. We have made progress and we are moving forward but we need to continue pushing as hard as possible to catch the teams in front of us. The hard thing about Formula One is that all the other teams are improving as well so we just have to work as hard as we can to close the gap for the rest of the season. Toyota has the potential and the resources to succeed and we will continue pushing hard to close the gap. There is still a long way to go in the season.
Q: Do you enjoy visiting France?
JT: I really like racing in France - it feels like a second home race to me because I spent time working with French teams and I can speak French. There are now very few drivers in Formula One who speak French so there is a lot of interest in me here and I have a lot of supporters. I like coming to Magny-Cours even if the track is a little bit lost in the French countryside! I have had some good races here so it will be a shame if we dont come back.
Q: Qualifying was exciting, how did you see it?
JT: It was an exciting session because the lap times were all very close together, so that made it a real battle at the end of each session. Just one small mistake would have been very costly but I didnt make any mistakes and I did a good lap in Q2 to get into the top 10. It was closer again in the final session and just a 10th quicker would have put me sixth but the team did the best we could and eighth was a good result.
Q: But the race was obviously over far too soon, what happened?
JT: It is always very tight on the first lap and things were very bunched up under braking for the hairpin. To be honest I just made a mistake and misjudged the corner. I hit the back of Heikki Kovalainens car and that broke my front wing and also my suspension. I am sorry for him because I was not attacking anyone or trying to get past at that stage, it was just a misjudgement. It ruined his race and mine as well which was a real shame because we were in a good position to score more points.