Maldonado optimistic of breaking F1 points duck in Hungary

Pastor Maldonado is confident that the similarities between the Hungaroring and Monaco - where he was denied a possible top six finish by being pushed into the wall by Lewis Hamilton - could help him to score his maiden Formula 1 points this weekend

Maldonado optimistic of breaking F1 points duck in Hungary

The Venezuelan, who won the GP2 feature race at the Hungaroring last year and also claimed victory in a Euroseries 3000 race there in 2007, believes that the characteristics of the track could allow him to fight for position higher in the midfield than he has in recent races.

As well as being a track dominated by slow corners, Pirelli has allocated the supersoft and soft tyre compounds that were used in Monaco. This means that despite the Hungaroring not requiring the same precision driving between barriers, there are plenty of features in common with the track where Maldonado starred two months ago.

"It is not exactly the same, but in terms of set-up Hungary is very close to Monaco," said Maldonado when asked by AUTOSPORT if he thought he could recapture his Monaco form in Hungary.

"The track is very bumpy and it's very difficult mentally and physically, so on that side of things, it's very much like Monaco. Having the supersoft and the soft tyre should work better with our car. So I hope to close the gap a little bit more [to the front] than in the previous races at normal tracks."

Maldonado has shown impressive Saturday form so far this season, outqualifying his vastly more experienced team-mate Rubens Barrichello five times in 10 races. But he has called on the team to improve the performance of its car in race trim, with tyre degradation a particular weakness.

His best race finish this year has been 14th, which he claimed at the Nurburgring and Silverstone, but he has qualified in the top 10 on three occasions, showing that the car struggles on long runs.

"The car is a bit more competitive in qualifying than during the race," said Maldonado. "We are working hard to improve on that. If we could be more consistent during the race, it will give the engineers more chances strategically. Our strategies in the races can be very limited because we have to work with the tyres. We have been progressing on this, but not enough."

"Tyre wear will be one of the most important things during Sunday's race, so it will be a tough weekend for everybody. We need to manage that situation really well."

shares
comments
Thursday's press conference - Hungary
Previous article

Thursday's press conference - Hungary

Next article

Hamilton cautious on victory chances in Hungary despite German GP win

Hamilton cautious on victory chances in Hungary despite German GP win
Load comments
How Ferrari gained a new edge over McLaren in the best-of-the-rest F1 2021 battle Plus

How Ferrari gained a new edge over McLaren in the best-of-the-rest F1 2021 battle

Supremacy in the McLaren vs Ferrari fight over third place in the constructors’ championship has ebbed and flowed between the two teams so far in the 2021 Formula 1 season. But for several key reasons, right now it seems the advantage has swung decisively back to the Scuderia and McLaren knows it.

The 70s US superteam that tried and failed to crack F1 Plus

The 70s US superteam that tried and failed to crack F1

Vel’s Parnelli Jones Racing was briefly one of the biggest names on the US motorsports scene, but its ambition outstripped its resources. STUART CODLING relates the story of a Formula 1 campaign cut off in its prime

Formula 1
Oct 26, 2021
The key details that boosted Red Bull and held back Hamilton in Verstappen’s USA victory Plus

The key details that boosted Red Bull and held back Hamilton in Verstappen’s USA victory

As the 2021 Formula 1 title battle winds towards its climax, the United States GP added another thrilling act in the Lewis Hamilton-Max Verstappen battle. Although Hamilton aced the start, Verstappen and Red Bull took the initiative with strategy and were richly rewarded, despite Mercedes' best efforts as the race went down to the wire

Formula 1
Oct 25, 2021
US Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

US Grand Prix Driver Ratings

On a baking hot afternoon at the returning Circuit of the Americas, Formula 1 drivers were tested to their limits. As the pressure on the title contending squads reaches an ever-greater level of intensity, the foremost challengers again showed their class, but were outshone by a standout drive from the upper midfield

Formula 1
Oct 25, 2021
Why F1's misunderstood party animal will thrive in retirement Plus

Why F1's misunderstood party animal will thrive in retirement

Three years on from Kimi Raikkonen's last Grand Prix victory at Austin, he is now six races away from ending the longest Formula 1 career in history. His friend and former Ice1 Racing rally team PR man ANTHONY PEACOCK explains why there’s nobody quite like the 2007 world champion and why F1 will miss him (but he won’t miss it)

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert Plus

The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert

It's 50 years since Jo Siffert was killed in his prime at Brands Hatch. The Swiss scored just two world championship wins in a Formula 1 career spent largely with privateer teams, but showed on numerous occasions in single-seaters and in sportscars with Porsche that he could beat any of the best drivers of his era given the right equipment

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: How Red Bull’s ace has become F1 champion material Plus

Verstappen exclusive: How Red Bull’s ace has become F1 champion material

As Red Bull and Honda go all-out for victory in the Japanese engine manufacturer’s last season of its latest Formula 1 dalliance, Max Verstappen finds himself thrust into a compelling title fight with Lewis Hamilton. He told OLEG KARPOV about his evolution into a world championship contender and why Red Bull's no compromise ethos suits him down to the ground

Formula 1
Oct 23, 2021
How Mercedes went from Austin practice domination to "very tight at the front" with Red Bull Plus

How Mercedes went from Austin practice domination to "very tight at the front" with Red Bull

Mercedes has been on a roll of late in the ultra-tight fight to win the 2021 Formula 1 world championship. It started off well in practice at Austin for this weekend’s US Grand Prix, but Red Bull got closer as Friday unfolded and even seemed to find an edge in one critical area of what seems set to be another close contest

Formula 1
Oct 23, 2021