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Kevin Magnussen Q&A: Incidents masking McLaren progress

25 May 2014

After qualifying seventh and running as high as sixth in Monaco, Kevin Magnussen seemed poised to score serious points for the first time since his startling podium in Australia.

Incidents scuppered such hopes and restricted him to a solitary point in tenth, but the Dane insists McLaren are finally making progress and back on an upward trend.

Q: Kevin, Monaco looked like being the end of your top-six drought, but in the end it was only a one-point yield. What happened?

Kevin Magnussen: I don't know what went wrong. Right now I only know that I had a problem with the power unit - that's it.

Q: It was your first Monaco Grand Prix. Were your expectations different to the actual outcome?

KM: To be honest, it's a fantastic track, a fantastic atmosphere - and unfortunately a disappointing ending to my race. But the outlook is good, and with 13 races sill to come that in the end is all that matters.

Q. What about your incident with Kimi Raikkonen?

KM: To be honest I didn't see much. I heard from the engineers that he was close so I went on the inside at the hairpin to block him off. It is always hard to overtake if someone blocks you, as the chances that you make it are quite slim. He tried it and it didn't work - there is not much more to say about it. That's racing.

Q: You had quite a few battles even before that incident...

KM: Yes. Somehow everything went against us today, except for the car! The car was working really well. Take me: there was the safety car, the incident with Kimi, the unsafe release - today was really jinxed! But as I just said: the car felt great, it simply wasn't our day today.

Q: Can you talk us through your incident-packed race?

KM: Well, the start was OK - in fact the race was pretty OK until the moment the safety car came out. Form then on it was not my race any longer. In the end it was one point, but it could have been more - actually it could have been ten points. My guess is that we should have been fifth or sixth, very likely fifth as I should have managed [Nico] Hulkenberg as he had massive degradation and I was looking after my tyres, so I should have caught him again towards the end of the race. And just when I wanted to attack him I had an engine problem and fell behind - and then Kimi came along.

Q: Your power unit issue: was that something you felt uneasy with from the beginning, or did it develop rather suddenly?

KM: It was a sudden issue.

Q: At that stage your team mate Jenson Button went past you. Was that something that the team told you because they saw your problem?

KM: No, no, not at all. At McLaren there are no team orders. It was a simple truth: I had an engine problem and he had more power than me. He managed to pass me because I had an engine problem - I didn't 'wave' him through!

Q: You said that there is a clear upward trend with the car, so you must be looking forward to Canada?

KM: I definitely am, as we are really going forward. That might be a bit hard to see from the outside because things keep happening that distract us from showing our potential - but there is real progress that we're making.