F1weekly podcast # 343




Jules of French racing

Pre-season favorite to lift the 2009 F3 Euro series Championship, the 19-year old
racer from Brignoles talks to F1 weekly about his career and goals.

By Nasir Hameed
Hameed: Two wins and two poles in your rookie year in 2008, what is your strategy for 2009? Be aggressive and win many races or cruise and collect to win the championship?

Bianchi: “My strategy will be aggressive in race one; I’ll do my best to win. Then, my aim will be to score points in race two.”

Hameed: How special was the feeling to score first win over teammate Nico Hulkenberg in the F3 Masters at Zolder?

Bianchi: “After the finish line I was crying in my helmet! For me it was really special to win in Zolder because of my family background, and because to beat Nico fairly was a really good thing for me.”

Hameed: What was your best and worst moment from last season?

Bianchi: “The best one was for sure Zolder and the worst one, Brands Hatch! At Brands Hatch, I was leading the feature race and everything was going well until I arrive in a yellow flagged corner. I slowed down but not enough for the marshals who gave me a drive through penalty.

“That ruined my race, and my week-end. It had been a very hard moment for me as it killed my possibility to fight for the championship. That’s also the price to pay when you lack racing experience as it was only my second year of open wheel.”

Hameed: You have three rookies as teammates, what advice will you give them apart from staying behind you?

Bianchi: “The first year in F3 Euro series is never easy but I have to say that my teammates are really very quick. They have to be calm in the first races and think about finishing in the points which is already a good thing as a rookie.”

Hameed: Who is guiding and managing your career

Bianchi: “Nicolas Todt is managing my career and he is like my “race father”! He has really been doing a lot for me and he’s always available for advice. Then, Olivier Maernhout is taking care of my daily needs and comes with me to every race. I would say that he is like a brother to me!”

Hameed: Who will be your main challengers for the championship?

Bianchi: “I will have many challengers. I think Brendon Hartley will be a good challenger and also Atte Mustonen.”

Hameed: Your favorite track?

Banchi: “My favorite tracks are Macau and Hockenheim.”

Hameed: Your grandfather Mauro raced at Le Mans, is that something you would like to do in the future?

Bianchi: “Yes, of course, I would like to do it but my father doesn’t really want me to do Le Mans because we lost my uncle, and my grand father had a really big crash there.”

Hameed: You raced at Macau last year, how was that experience and do you prefer street racing to traditional tracks like Spa or Dijon-Prenois?

Bianchi: “I really like street circuits because you need to be more concentrated than on normal tracks but my pleasure is the same when I’m in the car. I just love to drive.”

Hameed: Any interest in becoming the first French driver in modern era to win the Indy 500?

Bianchi: “Why not? But that’s not my aim for the moment.”

Hameed: When you move to GP2, would you prefer to stay with ART or try another team?

Bianchi: “Of course I would like to be with ART Grand Prix! That’s such a great team with great people. We will see in the future. But I will do every thing to be in this team if I go in GP2.”

Hameed: Finally, please describe Jules Bianchi, the young man, not the driver?

Bianchi: “When I’m at home, I train a lot and I also do some karting because my father runs a track! So it’s easy for me to take a go kart and drive. Then I also go-kart races with my little brother to help him. My favorite food is Italian food, it’s the best one! Then I like house music and I like to play to sport game on the playstation.

“Thank you, it was a pleasure…See you.”
For more information on Jules’ accomplishments please visit www.jules-bianchi.com

Photo: DPPI





 The pursuit is relentless

Suspension suspended: A lenient decision by the FIA World Motor Sport Council has prevented Vodafone McLaren team from being disconnected from this year’s championship. Many had feared the perpetrators of lie-gate were headed to the waste-gate following the audacity of star driver and current world Champion, Lewis Hamilton, and team’s sporting director, Davey Ryan, to continue to lie to FIA stewards despite their contradictory statements from radio communication and statements to press.

The Woking based team were handed a suspended three-race ban for bringing the sport into disrepute following the council’s meeting on Wednesday in Paris. The FIA statement read:

"Having regard to the open and honest way in which McLaren Team Principal, Mr. Martin Whitmarsh, addressed the WMSC and the change in culture which he made clear has taken place in his organisation, the WMSC decided to suspend the application of the penalty it deems appropriate.

"That penalty is a suspension of the team from three races of the FIA Formula One World Championship. This will only be applied if further facts emerge regarding the case or if, in the next 12 months, there is a further breach by the team of article 151c of the International Sporting Code."

Now let’s go motor racing in Montmelo. The Spanish Grand Prix is next on May 10th.