PASTOR MALDONADO WITH HIS SINGAPORE GRAND PRIX PREVIEW
Driver of car thirteen, Pastor Maldonado, looks to the challenges of Marina Bay for the thirteenth race of the 2015 season.
What’s your outlook looking to Singapore?
I’m positive. Singapore’s a fantastic event, it’s a fun circuit and we’ve got a great car. We’ve shown at many different circuits that we can perform well this year so it’s another race where we want to get out there and put in a strong performance.
What’s the key to a good lap at Marina Bay?
Traction is fundamental in Singapore, it’s a really big factor. This is because the corners are generally slow and tight, so it means the way we exit them will be critical to ensure a good lap time. It will be tough to regulate the torque and the traction out of the slow speed corners. Then you look at all the normal things for a fast lap. It’s a track where you can’t make mistakes because the walls are so close.
Is Marina Bay a big physical challenge?
Yes it is. Overall it is a very demanding track where you get no rest at all really. You are constantly turning or braking and there are only two short straights, not enough to really have a proper rest. But I like it this way because you get a rhythm going quickly. Physically it is tough because the humidity is so high and the race so long, much longer than Monza for instance.
Do you enjoy racing at night?
To be honest it is not too different to racing in the day or at night. The main reason is quite simple – when we drive we do not look upwards, we are always focusing on what is straight ahead. The big change is the temperature of the Tarmac which is slightly cooler at night. So we have a slightly different approach because of this. We have to adapt our styles a little and make sure we create heat in the tyres as much as we can.
Any issues with the body clock re-set?
As everyone knows, we stay on European time. Although some people say it is tough, I find it not to be too difficult. Once you have experienced it you get used to this way of living and it is only for a few days anyway. The physical demands are much harder because of the extreme humidity so I make sure I am very well hydrated in the days leading up to the race and of course during time in the cockpit. It is probably the most important part of our preparation.
What are your thoughts looking back to the Italian Grand Prix?
It was another race I watched from our motor home and that’s not how I want to spend my races! It was frustrating. I got a good start but received contact from another car and my race was over. We kept going for that lap but it was obvious the front suspension was damaged. I was lucky in a way as I was able to retire in the garage rather than Romain who tried continuing after the incident he was involved in, and had to park his car on track then find his way back. I could watch the race straight away! That’s motor racing sometimes. The team had worked really hard and we were well placed for a race where we could have collected a lot of points. Looking to the future, the Italian Grand Prix was the last one of the European season so the last one with our motor home. Hopefully I enjoy the remaining seven races of the season for every lap behind the wheel of my race car.