Kovalainen praises Renault progress

Finn Heikki Kovalainen praised Renault's progress after a strong performance in the Turkish Grand Prix

Kovalainen praises Renault progress

Kovalainen finished in sixth place, right behind championship leader Lewis Hamilton, and the Finn even led the race after a late pitstop.

"This was a really good race for me," said the Finn, now two points ahead of his teammate Giancarlo Fisichella in the standings.

"The start was quite exciting, as Heidfeld pushed me very wide on the run to the first corner, and I had to back off quite a lot.

"But I defended my position aggressively and once the tyres started working properly after a few laps, the car balance was stable and the pace was consistent.

"Both types of tyre worked well on our car today, although it felt a little more comfortable in the final laps on the softer one. The team did a great job with the pitstops, and the strategy was spot on.

"Ever since Nurburgring when we introduced some new developments, we have been looking for the chance to prove they were a step forward, and I think this race has done that. Now, we need to get our heads down and try to make another step at Monza."

Teammate Giancarlo Fisichella did not enjoy a good day after making contact with Jarno Trulli's Toyota at the start.

The incident dropped Fisichella down the order and the Italian had to settle for ninth place.

"My race was compromised by what happened at the first corner," said Fisichella. "Jarno braked very suddenly in front of me, I had nowhere to go and ended up hitting him, which cost me positions and made him spin.

"That ruined his race, and I am sorry, but it also cost me the chance of finishing in the points. After that, it was tough: I just had to drive flat out, and hope for retirements. Unfortunately that didn't happen, but the pace of the car was not too bad."

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