Subscribe

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe

Brazil Sunday quotes: Renault

Heikki Kovalainen - DNF: "We were planning to run a very short first stint, and with the car light on fuel, I made a good start. I went right on the way to turn 1, hoping it would then give me the inside line through the next corner, and was running alongside Ralf Schumacher

"I think Fisico got hit because his car suddenly moved over, setting off a chain reaction and Ralf hit my car. At first, I thought the front left suspension was broken, but as I drove back to the pits I thought it was maybe just a puncture. That proved to be the case, so we fuelled the car longer and went back out.

"Unfortunately, the time I had lost put me right in a group of cars lapping me, so I drove with blue flags all the time for the first stint: I was quicker than the guys in front, but because they were a lap ahead, I had to let them all past! Eventually, I got out of the traffic, and was just looking to bring the car home to the finish.

"But then, going through turn 2 I felt a vibration at the left rear, and as I lifted off, the back end snapped and put me in the wall. It's a real shame to retire like this and not manage to finish all the races, but that's the way it goes.

"All I want to do now is move on to the next challenge: firstly the New York Marathon in November, and then focusing on next year. If I want to become world champion, which is my aim, I need to be even better prepared mentally and physically than I was this year. I want to start working towards that goal as soon as I possibly can."

Giancarlo Fisichella - DNF: "This has been a difficult season for the whole team, but I had hoped that the last race would last for a bit longer than two laps. I got hit in the rear at the start, which damaged the car. Then, on lap 2, I went off fighting with a Williams on the way into turn 1.

"The car was very hard to control or slow down on the grass, with very low grip, and that meant that when I came back onto the track, I was involved in a collision with another car.

"It was just a racing incident, and I am sorry that it ended both of our races. It is a shame to leave the final race empty-handed, after a year when we had to fight so hard. But thank you to all the guys: no matter how hard it got, they never stopped working, and they deserved more from the end of the year."

Flavio Briatore, Managing Director: "We have had a difficult season, and it finished with a hard race. The team expected a tough end to the year because we have been working towards 2008 for a long time already, and when you start in the midfield, the kind of incidents we saw today can happen.

"In spite of this, though, we were prepared to take some risks today and perhaps they could have paid off. The most important thing after a year full of challenges is that we demonstrated our character and determination.

"The support from Renault, from ING and our other partners never wavered, and we thank them for their commitment. Our next challenge is to show that we can come back stronger next year, and regain our place at the front of the field. I am confident we can deliver."

Pat Symonds, Executive Director of Engineering: "Giancarlo's race was very short: when you have two accidents in two laps, it's probably a sign that it's not going to be your day. As for Heikki, after his problem in qualifying we decided to do things a little differently as there were no points to be had from a conventional approach.

"We intended to run a very short stint on the supersoft tyre, and it turned out to be even shorter than expected, as he was forced to pit with a puncture on lap 1. He continued to race hard, even when a lap down, but ultimately he crashed at turn 3.

"We need to find out why, but it appears to have been the result of a car problem. We set our standards high at Renault and while our championship position is nothing to be ashamed of, it doesn't meet the goals we set ourselves. It only makes us more determined than ever to come out fighting in 2008."

Be part of the Autosport community

Join the conversation
Previous article Webber laments 'unbelievable' retirement
Next article Mixed feeling for the Toyota drivers

Top Comments

There are no comments at the moment. Would you like to write one?

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Autosport Plus

Discover premium content
Subscribe