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2018/06/24 15:10:00

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French GP 2018 – Advance

19 June 2018
You raced at Circuit Paul Ricard in a GT car. When was that, what team was it for and what do you remember about the race? “It was in 2010 with Matech Competition. I don’t think we had an amazing race, but it’s great to be going back there racing.” How do you prepare for a venue you’ve never been to before in a Formula One car? “The simulator is our only option, and I spent last Wednesday in the simulator.” How does the simulator compare to actually being in a racecar, at speed, at a circuit? “It gives you a rough idea, but it’s not initially super easy when it’s a new circuit because the correlation may not be at its best. It gives you an idea where it goes, but it’s not like Barcelona, for example, where we do the same lap time and get the same feeling.” Is the simulator most used for understanding a circuit’s layout and braking points, or is it more involved than that? “It’s more involved than that. It’s more for the setup of the car and for developing the car rather than for driver feedback, or the driving itself.” Haas F1 Team is still relatively new, but Circuit Paul Ricard is new for everyone. Do you feel the French Grand Prix is perhaps the most level playing field because everyone is, theoretically, starting from the same slate? “Actually, it’s the opposite. The more experience you have, the more you can prepare for a new venue. We’ll do our best. We’re in a good place with the car, so I think we should be good.” The French Grand Prix is your home grand prix. You’ve talked about how much you’re looking forward to it, but now that it’s here, what are your expectations? “I want to get a good weekend, have some luck, get my first points of the season, and get a lot of support from the fans.” As much pride as there is with a home grand prix, there are also more demands on your time. How do you balance all of the outside influences with what you need to do behind the wheel of your racecar? “Well, we go to a grand prix to race, and to race well. That’s the number one priority. Of course, I want to give as much as I can to the fans, but the racing on Sunday is what I’m going for, and that’s what we need to focus on.” While the most recent grand prix in Montreal didn’t produce the result you would’ve liked, it did seem to be a race weekend where you felt the most comfortable in the racecar. Is that accurate? If so, was there anything in particular that made you feel right with the car? “I liked the updates we had. It really felt like it gave me what I was lacking earlier on in the season. I thought P7 in Montreal would be ours. Not being able to

Canadian GP 2018 – Review

12 June 2018
“We didn’t really know quite how long we could go. We had been planning to go long, but not as long as that. The tires were holding quite nicely. There was only a bit of front degradation. I was happy with the pace. I was easily managing keeping up with the Renault in front and the Force India behind. If qualifying had been as I was expecting with a P7, it would’ve been a P7 today, for sure. Anyway, we tried to come back, but our strategy didn’t quite work. When we came out of the pit we had a lot of blue flags and so on. I couldn’t really come back through the field. We did our best. The car is fast and I enjoyed driving it.”

Canadian GP 2018 – Advance

4 June 2018
You’ll have some updates on your racecar for the Canadian Grand Prix. When new parts and pieces are added to your car, how important is that FP1 session to understand how they affect the car in an actual race setting? “FP1 is normally about tires and aero, and with having updates on the car, we need to make sure in FP1 that it’s working as expected.” Another relatively new wrinkle for Canada is the Pink hypersoft tire. You got a lot of experience with it at its debut in Monaco. Did it perform as you expected it, or did it present some new challenges you hadn’t seen before? “I think it worked as expected in qualifying, even though I don’t think we got the best of them. We’ve got to get a bit more understanding of them before heading to Canada. In the race, I’ve got to be honest, the three different compounds just didn’t work for us. We were just cruising around, not driving, not pushing as hard as we wanted.” The Circuit Gilles Villeneuve is a semi-street circuit. Is there anything you can take from Monaco and apply to Montreal, especially considering Pirelli is bringing the same tire compounds from Monaco? “Tire compounds are going to be the number one priority for us to understand with the new package. The circuit is very different. It is much more high speed with much more curb riding, so the setups are quite different.” It was warm in Monaco, but that’s not always the case in Montreal. How does the outside temperature affect the Pink hypersoft? “Temperature affects all tires, and we’ve got a little bit less understanding of the hypersoft right now. We’ll see how it goes in Montreal. It can be very warm or very cold there. Hopefully, it’s going to be a nice sunny weekend.” We’ve talked tires and engines this year, but one thing we haven’t talked much about this year is brakes. That’s a good thing, isn’t it? After the team’s travails with brakes the last two years, is it safe to say you’ve found the right package for this year? “Absolutely. I’m loving the brakes we’re running. I haven’t had an issue with them, and the feeling has been perfect. That box is ticked.” Canada is known as the hardest-braking grand prix of the year. What do you need to make the most of your car’s braking capability, and how do you manage your brakes for the entire, 70-lap race? “Canada is very hard on the brakes, but our cooling should be better. Sometimes you can do some lift-and-coast, especially when the car is full of fuel at the beginning of the race. You want to try to save the brakes a bit and not overheat them, so they’re good by the end of the race when you’re trying to push them, or by pit stop time.” A good brake package gives a driver confidence. Has getting a handle on the team’s brake package allowed

Monaco GP 2018 – Review

28 May 2018
“It was a tough race. We struggled and didn’t have much pace. Unfortunately, with no crazy thing in the race, we were always going to be in a difficult position. I think we should have a good car in Canada.”

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