Q&A with Toyotas Timo Glock 30 Sep 2008
Before the season opener in Melbourne, Toyotas Timo Glock set himself a target of scoring 20 points in 2008. And on Sunday in Singapore, following his fourth-place finish, Glock reached his goal and is now 10th in the championship - just six points adrift of his more experienced team mate Jarno Trulli. Here the German driver reviews his race in Singapore
Q: Fourth place in the dark! Are you happy?
Timo Glock: I was pleased with my race and the job that I did. The track was very bumpy and the race went almost to its two-hour maximum so it was hard work. We knew that it was going to be unforgiving and that concentration was crucial, so Im pleased to have done the 61 laps without making a mistake. It was quite challenging to set the car up for this track because of the bumps but the team worked hard on this and we got the maximum out of the car.
Q: That was your third top four finish of your rookie season. Are you happy with the way things are going?
TG: My target at the start of the season was to score 20 points and I have achieved that with three races still to go, which is good. I knew I had to learn a lot at the start of the season in terms of adapting to a new car and working with the team, but things have gone really well and I am very pleased with the progress we have made. I knew it would be hard to match Jarno at the start of the season but my goal was to be on his pace in the second half, and that is what has happened.
Q: Technically, how did the weekend go for you?
TG: I had quite a tricky qualifying session, which we expected from the beginning. After second practice on Friday it was clear that it would be quite tough for us because of the bumps but in Saturday practice I just stayed with my set-up and tried to adapt my driving a little bit more to the car and track. I concentrated on trying to get into a rhythm with the car and it paid off in qualifying. The trouble in Q1 was the traffic but in Q2 I had a solid last lap under a bit of pressure and that put us into Q3 and I was happy with the lap time. Maybe we could have got sixth or seventh but it was so tough on heavier fuel that I was pleased with my lap and happy with eighth place. In the race everything went well; we both had another good start and I was fighting in the top six from the start. It was tough to race in such heat and humidity, especially with the bumps, but I didnt make any mistakes and everything worked out well.
Q: How was it racing under the lights?
TG: There were some places that were a little dark, like the last corner, but I got used to it in first free practice. I had already experienced racing at night in Champ Car so I expected it would not be like daylight everywhere and that is what we found. Its not a major problem but it takes some getting used to because if you are driving at high speed and the light level changes, your eyes need to adapt quickly.
Q: Did you try any special helmet visor tints?
TG: I drove on Friday with a medium tint visor and then switched to an orange one, which helped a little in removing some of the contrast from the lighting.
Q: What about the bumps?
TG: The new track in Valencia was really smooth with no real bumps and I think everybody expected almost the same here. Perhaps we were forgetting that almost every bit of the track is an actual road and thats the reason its bumpier. I experienced a lot of street tracks like this in Champ Car and it is quite normal for the surface to be a bit bumpy. I think the bumpiest track I ever drove on was San Jose, but Singapore was quite close.
Q: How did you find the night schedule?
TG: It was no problem for me. I arrived into Singapore on Wednesday and I stayed on European time. It was no problem staying up until 4am and then sleeping in the day, even if it did feel a bit strange. I think the bigger problem is that I am staying in Singapore until the Friday after the race and I will have to adapt to Singapore time before travelling to Japan. We have some team events in Tokyo next weekend so it didnt really make sense to go back to Europe.
Q: What did you think of the vibe and the whole Singapore event?
TG: I think Singapore did a fantastic job. Formula One looked great under lights, the city looked tremendous, there was a big crowd and I think the atmosphere was very special, in the way that you often get a different feeling at an evening soccer game.