MONACO GRAND PRIX REVIEW
30 MAY 2012
Williams F1 finished the Monaco Grand Prix with mixed feelings. Bruno Senna finished 10th, bringing home one world championship point for the team, but the pace of the FW34 had promised a lot more, as the team’s Chief Operations Engineer Mark Gillan explains.
Mark Gillan, Chief Operations Engineer:
Q: Mark, it was a frustrating weekend for Williams F1 in Monaco. So much potential, yet the team only got one world championship point. How competitive was the FW34 around the Principality’s streets?
MG: The car was good enough for a P4 or P5 qualifying position and our race pace was also good so it is disappointing not to have come away from this event with a decent haul of points.
Q: This was the first race of the year for Pirelli’s super-soft compound. Did it perform as you expected?
MG: Yes, the tyre performed pretty well (as expected) in terms of both pace and durability.
Q: Were you surprised that so many people opted for a one-stop strategy in the race?
MG: No not really, as the tyres were capable of a one stop and it was likely to have been the default strategy for the majority of the field.
Q: Pastor’s weekend was compromised by a 10-place grid penalty, following a collision with Sergio Perez in FP3. What was your opinion of the incident and the penalty?
MG: I think that the incident was avoidable and therefore disappointing and that the penalty was therefore understandable.
Q: Bruno was more competitive in race trim than in qualifying. Why was that, and what does he need to do to qualify higher?
MG: Bruno was very honest after qualifying admitting that he could have done better and he pushed hard through the race but was ultimately frustrated by Kimi who held him up. We will continue to work hard with Bruno in the simulator and on the track to help him maximise the new tyres’ performance.
Q: The Canadian Grand Prix comes next. What are the technical challenges of the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, and what can we expect from the FW34 there?
MG: The team are looking forward to Montreal as we believe that we should be strong again, but we need to deliver in both qualifying and the race. Montreal is usually an eventful race, with multiple stops, high brake wear and with the chance of a safety car being very likely.