Maldonado banking on Monaco experience to target points
|By Edd Straw||Tuesday, May 21st 2013, 11:54 GMT|
Pastor Maldonado is hopeful his Monaco expertise will allow him to score the Williams team's first points of the season in Sunday's race.
The Venezuelan has a good record at Monaco, with wins in both Formula Renault 3.5 and GP2 as well as a sensational run to sixth place in his first F1 appearance before being taken out by Lewis Hamilton.
Even though the Williams has proved uncompetitive this season, Maldonado believes Monaco is a track where the driver can make a bigger difference.
"I hope to be more competitive and to be in the top 10 and it is possible," said Maldonado when asked by AUTOSPORT about his hopes for Monaco.
"It's one of the most different races during the season.
"I have always been very strong on that track in the past and I hope to be closer to the top 10 there."
Maldonado is satisfied that the team did improve the car with its upgrade package at the Spanish GP two weeks ago.
He described the car as stable at corner entry, but also found it nervous mid-corner thanks to the relative lack of downforce.
But he is unsure whether the handling characteristics will be suited to Monaco given the inconsistency of a car he labelled "undriveable" earlier this year.
"It's difficult to say because I have had a different feeling with the car at different tracks," said Maldonado of the car's suitability for Monaco.
"I hope to have a controllable car in Monaco.
"Normally, if I feel safe with the car there I can make the difference [at Monaco]."
Even though Williams has struggled so far this season, Maldonado believes that its race pace is good enough to fight with midfield leader Force India.
But its raw performance in qualifying is still poor, with both Maldonado and team-mate Valtteri Bottas failing to make it out of Q1 in Spain.
"In some races, it is quite consistent in terms of laptime but the big problem is that you are starting from near the back," he said.
"But we are quite close to Force India on race pace - it's just that if you start five places behind, it's very difficult to recover."