Valencia debrief with Williams Mark Gillan 26 Jun 2012
Sundays 2012 Formula 1 Grand Prix of Europe was a frustrating race for Williams. Bruno Senna came away with one world championship point, but many more were on offer until Pastor Maldonado's challenge came to a premature end after his clash with McLarens Lewis Hamilton. Williams chief operations engineer, Mark Gillan, gives his thoughts
Q: The European Grand Prix promised much for the Williams F1 Team, but ultimately delivered only one point. How would you summarise the competitiveness of the Williams-Renault FW34 this weekend?
Mark Gillan: We are obviously disappointed not to have capitalised on the pace shown throughout the weekend but we have learnt a great deal at Valencia, especially relating to tyre management.
Q: Your qualifying pace has not quite matched your strong race pace this season. Was Pastors third-place grid position a sign that this is changing?
MG: Our qualifying pace has improved and Pastor's pole position in Spain and subsequent third position in qualifying in Valencia is testament to that fact.
Q: Pastor received a penalty following a collision with Lewis Hamilton on the penultimate lap, what was your opinion on this?
MG: Obviously the team were disappointed to see one of our cars sustain damage so close to the end of the race when we were showing good pace, but we respect the decision taken by the stewards. Both Pastor and the team have moved on and the focus is now on achieving a good result at Silverstone.
Q: The FW34 was very fast all weekend. Was there a particular aspect of the Valencia Street Circuit that suited the car?
MG: No, not really, as the car seems well suited to most circuits. We have a good base package and with the excellent feedback that our drivers are giving us we are able to selectively develop the car to improve any deficiencies whilst also working on our strengths.
Q: How did the high track temperatures affect tyre wear, particularly for the one-stopping Bruno Senna?
MG: The tyres are sensitive to track temperature so tyre management is of first order importance. In conjunction with his engineers Bruno did a very good job in managing the tyres through the race.
Q: The teams home race, the British Grand Prix, comes next. What can we expect from the Williams-Renault FW34 at Silverstone?
MG: As per all races the whole team are pushing hard to maximise our performance and deliver a good result, which of course would be extra special given that it is our home Grand Prix.
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