Kovalainen targets podium at Monza

Heikki Kovalainen is positive of a strong result at the Italian Grand Prix, where the Finn is aiming to score his first podium of the season

Kovalainen targets podium at Monza

"I have a positive feeling about this race," Kovalainen, who finished second behind Sebastian Vettel at Monza last year, said ahead of Friday practice.

"Last year, I was trying to win and after qualifying we were in as strong position. I felt that for the race we had a strong opportunity to fight for victory but Sebastian was stronger.

"I've always liked this circuit, I had a good time here in GP2 and I did a lot of testing here for Renault. It's a different type of circuit; low downforce, the car moves around, it's high-speed so you need to get used to the different feeling.

"I'm looking forward to it, but this year you just don't know what is going to happen."

When asked if a podium finish was possible, he said: "That has to be our target. You have to target the best result - so pole position and victory is always our target. But let's see how we get on in practice."

The McLaren driver admitted having KERS this weekend will be an advantage, but he feels it is not such a crucial element compared to the aero package.

"It helps the most here out of any circuits," he said. "In theory we get the biggest benefit because there are quite a lot of low-speed corners leading onto long straights. When you use the KERS you can keep the advantage for quite a long time on the straights before the speed levels off.

"It helps, but I think it's still the aero package and efficiency on every other car is going to be crucial. If we don't have strong efficiency or enough straightline speed to the downforce we have it's going to be difficult.

"The KERS has helped us in every circuit apart from Silverstone this year and it's going to be the same here."

shares
comments
Theissen hopeful team will stay in F1
Previous article

Theissen hopeful team will stay in F1

Next article

Q & A with Heikki Kovalainen

Q & A with Heikki Kovalainen
Load comments
Unpacking the technical changes behind F1 2022's rules shakeup Plus

Unpacking the technical changes behind F1 2022's rules shakeup

Formula 1 cars will look very different this year as the long-awaited fresh rules finally arrive with the stated aim of improving its quality of racing. Autosport breaks down what the return of 'ground effect' aerodynamics - and a flurry of other changes besides - means for the teams, and what fans can expect

Why new era F1 is still dogged by its old world problems Plus

Why new era F1 is still dogged by its old world problems

OPINION: The 2022 Formula 1 season is just weeks away from getting underway. But instead of focusing on what is to come, the attention still remains on what has been – not least the Abu Dhabi title decider controversy. That, plus other key talking points, must be resolved to allow the series to warmly welcome in its new era

Formula 1
Jan 20, 2022
The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022 Plus

The Schumacher trait that will give Haas hope in F1 2022

Mick Schumacher’s knack of improving during his second season in a championship was a trademark of his junior formula career, so his progress during his rookie Formula 1 campaign with Haas was encouraging. His target now will be to turn that improvement into results as the team hopes to reap the rewards of sacrificing development in 2021

Formula 1
Jan 19, 2022
The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push Plus

The “glorified taxi” driver central to F1’s continued safety push

As the driver of Formula 1’s medical car, Alan van der Merwe’s job is to wait – and hope his skills aren’t needed. JAMES NEWBOLD hears from F1’s lesser-known stalwarts

Formula 1
Jan 15, 2022
When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push Plus

When BMW added F1 'rocket fuel' to ignite Brabham's 1983 title push

There was an ace up the sleeve during the 1983 F1 title-winning season of Nelson Piquet and Brabham. It made a frontrunning car invincible for the last three races to see off Renault's Alain Prost and secure the combination's second world title in three years

Formula 1
Jan 13, 2022
How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner Plus

How “abysmal” reliability blunted Brabham’s first winner

Brabham’s first world championship race-winning car was held back by unreliable Climax engines – or so its creators believed, as STUART CODLING explains

Formula 1
Jan 10, 2022
The steps Norris took to reach a new level in F1 2021 Plus

The steps Norris took to reach a new level in F1 2021

Lando Norris came of age as a grand prix driver in 2021. McLaren’s young ace is no longer an apprentice or a quietly capable number two – he’s proved himself a potential winner in the top flight and, as STUART CODLING finds out, he’s ready to stake his claim to greatness…

Formula 1
Jan 9, 2022
The original F1 maestro who set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton Plus

The original F1 maestro who set the bar for Schumacher and Hamilton

Juan Manuel Fangio, peerless on track and charming off it, established the gold standard of grand prix greatness. NIGEL ROEBUCK recalls a remarkable champion

Formula 1
Jan 8, 2022