FIA F1 - Selected Post Monaco Driver Comments


PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)

Lotus’s Romain Grosjean and Mercedes’ Michael Schumacher on their first-lap collision; Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne on opting to take a gamble and switch to intermediate tyres; Felipe Massa on bouncing back from his recent frustrations to claim his best finish of the season so far; and Red Bull’s Mark Webber on taking his second victory in Monte Carlo and his first win of the season. All 24 drivers and senior team personnel report back on Sunday in the Principality…

Red Bull Mark Webber (1st) “An incredible day; this place gives you such amazing memories. There were different parts of the race where I had to be incredibly focused and make sure we really capitalised on the positioning we had. A good friend of mine sent me a text message this morning and said ‘You’re in charge, you’re in front and in charge’ and we were, but you can get bitten here very quickly. There were a few key stages around the stops that were interesting. Sebastian had his tyres very hot and was quick at that point and I couldn’t get mine going, but once he pitted I reverted my attention back to Nico and just looked after the rears until the end of the race. Then the rain came, which around here is very, very tough. But we had composure and experience and great team work on the pit wall. It’s a tough nut to crack this race, but we did it again. I had both hands on it today and I wasn’t going to let go.”

Sebastian Vettel (4th) “It would have been nice to have been on the podium today. I think the speed was there, but in the end we had the same strategy as the leaders, just the other way round. It was quite difficult as we were on older tyres, but we had some good laps and we gained roughly around eight seconds, so that was strong. After that I was in traffic and it’s difficult to pass in Monaco, as I showed last year and Mark showed this year. We were hoping some of the leaders would be forced to do two stops, but unfortunately Kimi made quite a big gap behind me, so the leaders had clean air after their first stop. That helped them and it made it more difficult for us, but we started ninth and considering it’s hard to pass here, then to gain five places was a good day. It’s definitely good for Mark to win here and also for the team to get their third Monaco win in a row - it’s impressive.”

Christian Horner, Red Bull team principal "It’s a fantastic result for the team to achieve a third consecutive victory in Monte Carlo. Mark drove an immaculate race and after a very clean get away, he controlled the race from the front. We weren’t sure if it was going to be a one or two-stop strategy heading into the race, but Mark did such a good job on the soft tyre that he bought the option to make a one-stop really work and delivered the pace when he needed to. Despite some heart stopping moments in the last few laps, he controlled his pace fantastically well and never looked under threat. With Sebastian, after a good start he was in a high speed train in sixth place until all the soft runners pitted and then he had his window of opportunity to put in some really competitive lap times on the worn hard tyre and that, together with a fantastic pit stop today, enabled him to jump both Felipe Massa and Lewis Hamilton. So first and fourth is a great team result, it’s great to achieve a result like this, especially when all our partners are here in the Principality. All the races carry the same amount of points, but some are that little bit more special to win.”

Cyril Dumont, Renault track support to Red Bull “It’s simply fantastic. It’s the third time in a row that Red Bull-Renault has won the Monaco Grand Prix. I think Mark made a very solid race; he started from pole position and managed to maintain it throughout the race. For Seb, it was much more difficult - he started ninth and so it’s a pretty good result to move up to fourth, even if we do believe that we could have finished even a bit further up. I think we could have even got a one and two today, but the main thing is that we have increased our lead in the Constructors’ Championship and that’s the main key to keep in mind for today. It’s a very special race and it’s fantastic for everybody.”

Mercedes Nico Rosberg (2nd) “It's a fantastic feeling to be on the podium at my home race in Monaco today in front of all my family and friends. The team have done a really good job this weekend to get the car working so well. Although we thought this track would suit our car, it's been better than we expected. I had a clean start but Mark drove a very controlled race today. I could keep in touch with him but we all know how difficult it is to overtake around the streets here and there just wasn't a way past. Still I'm more than happy with second place, and it's great to get another podium for the boys here, and everyone back at Brackley and Brixworth. I can't wait to get to Canada now and keep the momentum going.”

Michael Schumacher (DNF) “What can I say? It was simply a pity to end the race in this way. In any case, the fuel pressure problem had nothing to do with the incident at the start. But it made it doubly disappointing because I had secretly been hoping for a podium finish today. I will take the boost from the high points of this weekend with me to Canada. The track should suit us and I'm hoping to have a normal, clean race.”

Ross Brawn, Mercedes team principal “Nico ran a very good race today and did all he needed to do. I think we made the right calls but nothing opened up for us. It was a race that was about managing gaps and finding the right windows in the traffic; the team did a great job on that. Nico was the first of the front-runners to stop, but the harder tyre took a lap or two to come in and it wasn't enough to jump Mark. As for Michael, he was hit on the run to the opening corner which cost him positions, but was very quick when a fuel pressure problem started to slow him later in the race. We tried to continue but it was costing him too much time, dropped him out of the points and forced us to retire the car. It was very disappointing because he put in a great performance this weekend and he was still on course to score useful points. We need to make sure we eliminate the problems for him, starting in Canada.”

Norbert Haug, vice-president, Mercedes-Benz Motorsport “It was a strong race for Nico and our team, and we were in with a chance of winning until the chequered flag, but Mark did not put a foot wrong all afternoon ahead of Nico. Looking at the results today, Fernando Alonso, Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton - who lead Nico in the championship - all finished behind him, and this helped him close the gap at the top of the standings to 17 points. That translates to an average of fewer than three points a race separating Nico from the championship lead after six rounds of the championship. It was a pity for Michael: he clearly demonstrated this weekend that he has the speed to win races but his time will come again, like yesterday when he posted the pole position time.”

Ferrari Fernando Alonso (3rd) “I’m very happy with the way things have gone this weekend. We leave Monaco heading the Championship: if I’d been offered that after the Mugello test at the beginning of the month, I’d have signed for it there and then, but if I’d been told that after Melbourne, I would never have believed it! In Australia we started twelfth, then in the last two races we have jumped onto the podium and we are first in the classification. This result has to be further motivation to push even harder on the development of the F2012. We knew the start would be crucial. I got away very well and I almost got alongside Grosjean and Hamilton: the Frenchman and I touched and, for a moment, I was scared the car was damaged. On this track overtaking is almost impossible and being in someone’s slipstream causes temperature problems, both for the engine and the tyres. So, you cannot always be on the attack of those ahead, trying instead to manage the situation and push flat out only at the moments that count, such as the pit stops and that’s what I did. Could I have also got past Rosberg and Webber if I’d stayed out on track a bit longer? Maybe, but at that moment it was the right choice to make. I was definitely very quick with a clear track ahead of me. Towards the end, I was a bit worried about Vettel who was on the Supersoft, but luckily I could defend my position comfortably. Then I hoped the rain would come, because I think that could have given me a chance of winning, however, in the last five or six laps I thought it was over, partly because at every corner there might have been a surprise lying in wait. In Barcelona, a track with a lot of fast corners, we went well and this track is a law unto itself, so let’s see what the situation is in Canada, but certainly we hope to be able to confirm at this track too the progress we have seen at the last two Grands Prix. Finally, I dedicate this podium to all the victims and their families of the earthquake that hit the Emilia region last week.”

Felipe Massa (6th) “It was a good race. I felt comfortable with the car right from the start of Thursday’s free practice. I had the right feeling and it was much easier to drive than at the previous races. Maybe it depends on the nature of the track or the set-up and we definitely need to analyse everything carefully to see what we can learn from this weekend. All things considered, I could have brought home a better result, but I am happy nevertheless. It was a very difficult race and very close and I was able to match the pace of the leaders. I am only sorry I was unable to do a few laps with a clear track ahead of me when the tyres were still competitive. The start was very good and also the tyre degradation, especially on the Soft compound was minimal. A driver always wants to do the maximum so I can’t be delighted with sixth place, however these are important points. I really hope my championship has turned around and that, from now on, I can always be in the fight for the top places, as was the case here in Monaco. Now we go to Montreal, which is a different type of track to this one, because you need a good top speed but, in fact it’s not that different in terms of the set-up required.”

Pat Fry, Ferrari chassis director “A very intense race, which ended with one car on the podium and the other in the top six. There was not a moment’s respite, right from the start, with the top six all together in just a handful of seconds. We all started a bit blind in terms of how the tyres would behave, both as far as durability was concerned and how they would perform in the first laps of use. Furthermore, the rain was always lying in wait and appeared right in the final moments. Fernando and Felipe both drove impeccably, without making the slightest mistake, as was the case for the crew during the pit stops. As for the strategy, day after day, the option of the one stop became ever more clear and, in the end it was the best choice. Sure, with hindsight, it’s easy to say that if Fernando had stayed out on track for a few laps more, then maybe he could have also passed Rosberg and got on terms with Webber as well as Hamilton, given the time he did on his in-lap. I think this weather was a surprise for everyone, as was the difficulty encountered in getting the Softs up to temperature in their first laps. With just a few seconds to react, we took the most logical decision, which did all the same lead to a podium finish. It all goes to show how every detail is crucial in a championship as closely contested as this one. We need to continue pushing on the development of the car, because we are still not where we want to be in terms of performance.”

Stefano Domenicali, Ferrari team principal “First of all, I want to say that all our thoughts are with everyone who is suffering as a result of the earthquake that hit the Emilia region last week: we hope that this strong race from Ferrari will have allowed them, just for a couple of hours, to forget their troubles at such a difficult time. We are with you, in thought and deed, because our roots are there, in the ground that has continued to shake there for the past eight days. As for the race, we leave the Principality with a very positive result and, above all, with Fernando Alonso leading the Drivers’ classification and Felipe Massa having delivered a brilliant and feisty performance all weekend long. Both our drivers did a great job, from the first to the last lap and the team behind them was a match for the situation. I am particularly happy for Felipe who needed a positive result: I’m sure this weekend really represents a fresh start to the season for him. We have to be satisfied, but we must definitely not relax, especially as we are not yet the best in terms of performance, particularly in qualifying. As I usually say after a good weekend, keep calm and carry on!”

McLaren Lewis Hamilton (5th) “I had a pretty poor start - I didn’t understand why that happened - and I was lucky not to get caught up in the first-corner crash. During the race, I struggled in the low-speed corners and found looking after the rear tyres tough. To make them last as long as we did, while trying to keep up with the pace of the guys in front, was one of the trickiest things I’ve had to do in a race. I lost time at my pitstop and gave away a place to Fernando, and then Sebastian was able to get past me after he made his own stop. After that, it was impossible to overtake. Today wasn’t the best result for me - I really dislike going backwards in a race - but I think I got everything I could out of the car. We came away with some points, and there are many more races ahead, but we’ve definitely got some work to do because, race by race, we’re struggling to keep up with the leaders. The other teams are picking up serious pace, too. We can’t let them pull away from us - but we’re a fantastic team, we’ll knuckle down together, and we’ll really push on now.”

Jenson Button (DNF) “At the start, Kamui almost landed on top of me because he’d been launched off someone else. Then I almost got stuck at the exit of Sainte Devote, but I just managed to squeeze through. After my stop, I got caught behind Heikki - we weren’t really fighting, but if you position your car in the right place around here then it’s impossible to overtake. That’s quite frustrating when you’re so much quicker than the guy in front. Finally, I had a look up the inside of Turn 15, we touched, and I had a puncture. Game over. Today’s result stems from a poor qualifying performance and being unlucky at the start. Also, when you start from the mid-grid, you’re more prone to incidents. It wasn’t my day today - but hopefully it will be sooner rather than later.”

Martin Whitmarsh, McLaren team principal This year’s Monaco Grand Prix won’t go down as one of the most triumphant in McLaren’s glorious Monte-Carlo history - since, although Lewis finished just four seconds behind Mark today, in truth the smallness of that deficit was partly occasioned by the unique combination of the drivers’ need to drive with tyre conservation in mind and a circuit on which overtaking is well-nigh impossible. As a consequence, Mark was able to back the field up in the closing stages, without risking his lead. Still, Lewis scored a useful 10 points, and lies only 13 points off the drivers’ world championship lead. Jenson had a frustrating afternoon, striving to make up ground from 12th on the grid, the result of which was ultimately a lap-71 DNF. Our next stop will be Montreal, another non-purpose-built racetrack, but one on which overtaking is at least feasible. Jenson won brilliantly there last year, and Lewis won superbly there the year before - so, although we weren’t able to add to our unrivalled record of 15 wins here at Monaco this afternoon, you can rest assured that in two weeks’ time we’ll be aiming to score a hat-trick of Vodafone McLaren Mercedes Canadian Grand Prix victories.”

Force India Paul di Resta (7th) “A great result today and I’m very happy to make up so much ground on my starting position. We went aggressive with the strategy and I have to say the team really optimised it. The secret was managing the tyres and trying to find clean air when we could. The car felt really good, much stronger than yesterday, and that allowed me to push when we needed to. Fortunately the rain held off at the end because that could have had a big impact on the end of the race. It’s great that we managed to get both cars in the points and we can celebrate tonight.”

Nico Hulkenberg (8th) “It was a pretty messy start with lots of cars touching and I was lucky to make it through because I had to avoid Grosjean, who was in the middle of the track. For the first few laps I was running with Michael and we were stuck behind Kimi who was struggling on the supersofts, but it was difficult to get by. Unfortunately Kimi stopped on the same lap as me so I remained behind him and we came out in a lot of traffic, which is when Paul jumped ahead of me. The rest of the race was quite uneventful and I just focused on looking after the tyres. It’s a great result for the team and we should be happy with the result.”

Dr Vijay Mallya, Force India team principal and managing director “A very enjoyable Monaco Grand Prix and I am delighted to see both Sahara Force Indias well inside the points. Paul drove a very strong race, making up seven places on his grid position and managing the tyres perfectly. Nico was running the reverse strategy to Paul, which also worked out well, and means we leave here with ten important points. Now we look forward to the next race in Canada where we hope to continue our run of points finishes.”

Lotus Kimi Raikkonen, (9th) “Ninth was the best we could do today. I didn’t start in a great position and I had some difficulties during the race so it’s not been the easiest weekend, but at least we got a couple of points. It’s better than nothing but not exactly what we wanted. One race doesn’t change the fact that we have been pretty strong everywhere – even here at the beginning of the weekend. This circuit is completely different from any other and I don’t think we should worry too much about the fact that it wasn’t our best weekend. It is what it is – sometimes it doesn’t go the way you expected and now we should look to Canada for a better result.”

Romain Grosjean, (DNF) “We struggled to get off the line and it looked like Lewis in front didn’t have the best start either. Fernando pulled alongside him so I was then on the outside of both cars, and unfortunately Michael was on the outside of me as well. There just wasn’t enough room and next thing I’m facing all the traffic after just one hundred metres which wasn’t a nice feeling. It’s a disappointing end to the week after some positive early signs, but that’s racing and now we look forward to Canada and a chance to bounce back.”

James Allison, Lotus technical director “We’ve had five races so far this season where we’ve shown strongly. Sadly, at the sixth we were not on the pace. It was a completely joyless experience from start to finish. Romain has been metronomic this weekend, but he was out of the race before the first corner which was a massive blow to our hopes for today. Kimi had an okay start, but wasn’t able to keep the car running at a challenging pace once the sheen came off his tyres after ten or fifteen laps. We stayed out longer than we would have done otherwise on the first set of super soft tyres as we, and everyone else, were waiting for rain to come. Now we have to pick ourselves up and come back in Canada to bring both cars home in strong placings.”

Eric Boullier, Lotus team principal "We arrived in Monaco after two consecutive podiums and did not really know what to expect at such a unique circuit. Before qualifying it was obvious that the E20 was going to be competitive, but things did not go as planned. Our positions on the grid did not reflect our true pace and that put us on the back foot for the rest of the weekend. Unfortunately Romain’s race ended prematurely after contact with Michael Schumacher, and like the Stewards I think it was a racing incident. With Kimi, we knew that fighting for a podium was going to be more than difficult. It then became obvious that we were struggling with our tyres when the temperature fell. The grip was just not there and we could only defend our position. In the end, the two points we’ve scored today are disappointing but because the field is so tight we have not lost too much ground on our opponents. We have the same number of points as Ferrari in the constructors’ championship, while Kimi is 25 points away from Fernando Alonso who’s leading the drivers’ classification. Anything can still happen and the championship is wide open. We’re now looking forward to Montreal, the first low downforce track of the season, where the E20 should be strong. Finally, I wish to congratulate the team for all their hard work this weekend. Our 500th was not one of our best, but I hope the 501st is!”

Williams Bruno Senna (10th) “I’m happy we got a point from a very tough race. We deserved more and I felt we could be stronger than this, but today it didn’t happen and so we did the best we could do. It’s good to be in the top 10 but I have bitter-sweet feelings. Now we are fired up for Canada and I’m really looking forward to that race. I have a lot of confidence that we are getting there with the set-up of the car, so I can’t wait to get going again.”

Pastor Maldonado (DNF) “It was a difficult weekend from my side. I am disappointed because I was expecting something more from the race. We had a great strategy, but after a good start I was in the middle of the track, and got a bit unlucky caught up in cars fighting ahead. I locked up and couldn't stop the car on the dirty side of the track at turn six. The weekend was compromised after we received the penalties yesterday so we are now looking forward to the next race. We have a competitive car and it will be completely different in Canada, it’s a different track and a different situation.”

Mark Gillan, Williams chief operations engineer “Whilst we are pleased to get a point today with Bruno we are equally frustrated as the car and drivers had much more pace than those immediately in front of them. Unfortunately Pastor's race ended on the first lap as he hit Pedro de la Rosa who was in turn braking hard due to the Grosjean incident ahead. Bruno drove a very good race pushing Räikkönen hard all the way to the end, but could simply not get past despite trying hard. We will now regroup for Canada and hope to do a better job in Montreal.”

Laurent Debout, Renault track support to Williams “Monaco is a challenging track for engine engineers as it’s unlike any other circuit on the calendar due to the high number of low speed corners. But this weekend has been difficult overall. Starting so far back means it is hard to make up positions so one point for Bruno is a reasonable result. We’re looking forward to Montreal for a better outcome.”

Sauber Sergio Perez (11th) “We were very quick, but from my grid position it is very difficult to overtake and move forward. After the drive through I managed to make up some positions, but the race was lost yesterday. We expected and hoped for more rain in the race. Nothing much happened and it was quite a normal race at the end. It was a shame, but for the next races we can be up there as we have a very good pace.”

Kamui Kobayashi (DNF) “I had a great start and was fighting with Sebastian Vettel, so maybe could have been just behind him. First Romain Grosjean went on the inside, but suddently he came back on the outside. I tried to avoid him, but he didn’t brake, hit my rear tyres and damaged my suspension. Maybe if I had had two wheels and not four I would have been fine! It was too dangerous to continue to drive.”

Giampaolo Dall’Ara, Sauber head of track engineering “It is difficult to decide whether to laugh or cry. On the one hand we can be very happy about how quick our car was, especially on a track which historically doesn’t favour us. On the other hand if something was going to go wrong then we were in the middle of it. Kamui just had bad luck being hit by Romain Grosjean’s Lotus in the first corner. Due to a part of the suspension being damaged he had to retire after six laps. It is to Sergio’s credit that he didn’t give up today despite his difficult starting position and heavy traffic. He made some good overtaking manoeuvres. On strategy we actually didn’t help him. The ideal time for a tyre change obviously would have been earlier, but we calculated more rain would come and lengthened his stint a bit. However, later in the race this turned out to be an advantage as his tyres then were fresher than those of the other drivers. We clearly wanted points here and didn’t get them.”

Peter Sauber, Sauber team principal “Sergio not only did the fastest race lap, but for long periods of the race he was the fastest driver on the track. This clearly shows what we can achieve if everything goes right for us. Now it is up to the entire team to turn our opportunities into success.”

Toro Rosso Jean-Eric Vergne (12th) “After the start, lots of cars in front of me cut the corner at the first turn and I found myself behind the Marussia and I was losing a lot of time. I was on a one stop strategy and to try and get me out of the traffic, we made an early stop. From then on, I ran at a very good pace, which I am happy about and I was as high as seventh. I was lapping quickly and consistently. But with around 14 laps to the end, my tyres were completely gone and I had to come in for the Intermediates, but the rain was not strong enough. It’s a real shame about the laps I lost in traffic at the start because without that I could have been comfortably in the points today. I am looking forward to Canada, as it’s a track I particularly like even if I have not been there and I will go there really hungry to get a good result.”

Daniel Ricciardo (DNF) “I had a good start after which I had to avoid an incident ahead of me but I was able to make up a couple of positions from that. I was behind Di Resta who was running the Prime tyre on a different strategy to me on the Option. We had good pace and I tried to attack, but I couldn’t manage it. I tried to stay out as long as possible on the Option tyre but then I started to lose pace, so I came in for the Prime, hoping to run to the end of the race. I came out in clear air and got into a rhythm before ending up in a train behind Kovalainen and Button. I tried to pass the McLaren but it was not so easy. Then I clipped a kerb at Turn 15. At the time I did not feel anything, but one lap later the steering felt very loose so I came into the pits as the car was no longer safe to drive. Despite all that, from a driving point of view, I really enjoyed myself until my retirement.”

Franz Tost, Toro Rosso team principal “The heavier rain that finally arrived as Red Bull Racing’s Mark Webber was on the podium celebrating a great win came too late to keep Jean-Eric in the points. Because he found himself towards the back of the field in the early stages after several cars got ahead of him on the opening lap by cutting the chicane, we brought him in early to switch to the Soft tyre with which he would go to the end of the race on a one stop strategy. Unfortunately, the tyres we fitted on lap 17 were therefore not in the best condition when some very light drizzle began to fall. As he had very little grip on the worn tyres, we brought him to fit the Intermediates on lap 71, but the rain which would have helped him fight for tenth place did not come soon enough. Rain, or the lack of it, also affected Daniel’s strategy. We kept him out late on the Supersoft in the hope we would call him in for rain tyres, but it did not happen and, as those around him picked up their pace, when he left the pits he therefore found himself at the back of that same group. In the end, we elected to retire his car in the pits after impact with a kerb appears to have damaged the steering.”

Caterham Heikki Kovalainen (13th) “That was obviously a great race for the team and I'm delighted we've got tenth place back and recorded our highest finish of the season. Despite that I think we could have had even more, but the rain came at just the wrong moment for us. If it had been fully wet and everyone had pitted we'd have been able to keep 12th, possibly even made up more in the stops, but when the light rain started falling my brake temperatures dropped and I wasn't quite able to keep up the pace I'd had throughout the race up to that point. However - this is a really good day for the team, and it's great to get back to the garage and see everyone in such good spirits. This type of track was always going to give us the chance to fight, I'd said that before the race, and it was really good fighting with Jenson for as long as I did, keeping him behind me and really pushing. We have more to come from this car throughout the season, so I think we have more races like this to look forward to, and results like today make all the hard work the whole team put in worth it.”

Vitaly Petrov (DNF) “I made a good start and passed a few cars but then a Sauber came right across me and hit me as we were going into turn 1. I could immediately feel a problem with the front wing so we gave it a couple of laps to see how bad the damage was but then had to pit for a new nose on lap 3. From that point I was pushing as ha/prd as I could but then I had a low battery warning light on the dash and from that point my race was pretty much over. My engineer told me to box on lap 16 with an electrical failure and that was the end of the race. It's a real shame as I was in a strong position after my good start and as the car has felt good all weekend I would have been in with a chance of finishing really well, but these things happen in motor racing.”

Tony Fernandes, Caterham team principal "I am obviously a very happy man today. That was one of the most tense but most exciting races we have had since we came into the sport just two and a half years ago, and to be not only racing Jenson's McLaren, but to be keeping him behind us and to be able to resist his attacks is a huge achievement for a team that is still young, still growing and hungrier than ever to succeed. In fact, when Heikki passed Jenson out of the pits that was definitely the most exciting moment in my Formula 1 career and something that I will remember for ever. For Vitaly today will go down as one of those races. It was good to see him how disappointed he was to be forced out by something out of his control as it proves how hungry he is to help us keep pushing forwards, but he has had another good weekend with us and I am sure the luck will turn for him soon. On the other side of the garage Heikki put in one of the best drives we have seen from him since we started back in Bahrain 2010 and his 13th place today puts us back into tenth in the championship and gives us a very good platform to work from for the rest of the season. I am also extremely proud of how the whole team worked today. The people back at the factory have never stopped working as hard as they can to give the drivers a car that they can use like they did this weekend, and the team on track were magnificent today. Calm, professional and as good as anyone else out there in the pitlane. When Heikki had to box late on in the race for a new nose it was a pretty tense moment, but they performed brilliantly, enough to make our Chief Race Engineer Jody Egginton tell them over the radio that they had done a "fantastic job lads - pure mint", and that sentiment goes for the whole team. I am an optimist and our pit wall is full of people who would call themselves realists – I would probably say they are pessimists - but after today I have never seen so many pessimists so optimistic about the future. A great day for sure."

Mark Smith, Caterham technical director “A very exciting race and one where we showed how we are progressing. It was obviously unfortunate to see Vitaly having to retire early, had he not been hit by the Sauber he would likely have been right up there with his team mate and we had opted to start the cars on different compounds so we would have had more strategy options open to us if he had not had the electrical failure that ended his race. With Heikki we started him on the super-softs and kept him out for a long first stint as he was managing his tyres well. He was having a fantastic battle with Jenson and keeping him at bay, and the pit crew did a very good job indeed to keep him ahead of the McLaren after the stops. When the rain started falling we saw Heikki's brake temperatures starting to drop and he was telling us the car was harder to control, but had Perez not hit him and caused his front wing failure I am sure he would have retained that place - he was clearly in a very determined mood and driving to the level everyone knows he can. I am delighted for him and the whole team - this has been a strong weekend for us and one that gives us even more impetus to keep challenging as we head to Canada and the rest of the season."

Marussia Timo Glock (14th) “A bit of a disappointing end to a race that started so well. We had good speed at the beginning and for the first 10 laps I could stick with Jenson quite well. We had good pace all the way until maybe the last quarter when the front wing end plate broke. We don’t know for sure why; maybe because of the touch with Perez early in the race. We will have to see what caused it. Generally happy with my performance and that of the team, but disappointing to hold on to 10th place for so long and now drop back. That’s racing though and not for long we have to hope. Now we focus on Canada and look forward to some better luck.”

Charles Pic (DNF) “Not a great race for me, but to be honest not our best weekend all round on my side. We held out for some forecast rain but this did not come, so we were not able to try to take advantage. Our pace was better in the race than the rest of the weekend, but in the end I had to stop early due to an electrical problem. After a strong run in the first five races I am a little disappointed, but we hope for better things in Canada.”

John Booth, Marussia team principal “This has been a disappointing race all round for us in terms of how it concluded. Unfortunately, given the way the race played out at the end, despite Kovalainen’s front wing change the problems on both our cars meant that he was able to retain 13th position, which means we have slipped back from 10th place in the Championship. However, looking at the positives, the race pace on both our cars was good and Timo was in line to finish without being lapped. It was therefore very frustrating that he lost his right front wing end plate in the Swimming Pool section. We have yet to determine how this happened, although a likely scenario is damage incurred at some other point in the race that weakened the end plate and it eventually came off. For Charles, unfortunately he retired on lap 65 due to a chassis related electrical issue which caused the engine to stop. We will take the lessons we’ve learned from this weekend and apply them positively as we prepare for the next race and beyond.”

HRT Narain Karthikeyan (15th) "It was a tough race because we were very limited on our tyres. We tried to keep a constant pace, stay out of trouble and finish the race; we knew that if we managed to do that we would be able to finish in a good position. 15th position is a good result and a good way of getting over the disappointment from Barcelona. Now what I need to do is work on putting together a good lap in qualifying as that has been my weakest point this season. Hopefully I'll be able to carry the momentum from here onto the next race in Canada and continue to progress."

Pedro de la Rosa (DNF) "It was a terrible shame; I feel sorry for the team because yesterday we did a good job and today we were starting from an interesting position and I think we could have achieved a good result. Our one-stop strategy with softs first and super-softs second was good, you only have to see what Vettel did, so it was a shame not to have been able to complete more than 300 metres. It wasn't a mistake by me or the team, but one by another driver, but those things happen in races. One day it might happen to me too, the sad thing is that it happened precisely here after all the good work we'd done and how much I was looking forward to finishing in Monaco with a good result. I leave here a little bit sad because, although we wouldn't have scored a point, we could have at least finished with a good result."

Luis Perez-Sala, HRT team principal "We've got mixed feelings today. Pedro got hit from behind in the early stages, which was a real shame but, on the other hand, Narain completed a very good race and we achieved a 15th place finish, our best result this season so far. This race is always complicated and, given the forecast, we started with a strategy planned for a wet race. In the end it didn't rain and that cost us a couple of positions. But we're satisfied because we finished the race, with one car at least and only two laps off the winner, something which here in Monte Carlo is positive for us."

Pirelli Paul Hembery, Pirelli motorsport director “Congratulations to Mark Webber and Red Bull. The team managed their race and their tyre strategy perfectly, winning Monaco for the third year in a row and a race for the second time this year. Once again we saw that the cars were all extremely closely matched, equalling each other on pace throughout the race. This was despite the fact that nobody had any proper running on the supersoft with full tanks, due to the mixed weather conditions during free practice on Thursday. As a result, calculating the strategy was extremely complicated. But with the nature of the circuit, plus a tyre choice that was certainly more conservative and hardly any tyre degradation, it was clear that a one-stop strategy was the way forward as soon as the teams learned more about the performance of the supersoft after the race got underway. Obviously that led to longer stints and limited opportunities for overtaking. Although there was some rain at the end, our slick tyres still offered enough grip to carry the leaders through to a very close finish with the top six finishing within six seconds of each other.”

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