Just a few short days after a very positive return to the racetrack for Marussia after the break, the team are up and running again in Monza for Round 13 of the Formula 1 world championship, the Formula 1 Gran Premio D’Italia. The Autodromo Nazionale Monza situated close to Milan is another majestic circuit from a bygone era, so the last two European races on the calendar really are designed to spoil deserving fans, as well as teams and drivers alike.
“Monza is quite a high speed circuit and also a very traditional circuit, with some very special characteristics such as the long straights and high speed corners. Here it is very important that a car is quick on the straights as well as good under braking. Every time it is an eventful race, so I’m looking forward to it, although it is the last race of the European section of the season. We do need to keep our expectations in check though as Monza is a completely different challenge due to the low downforce set-up required and realistically we did not look too strong in Canada, which calls for the same type of set-up. We have moved forward in a number of ways as a team and, for example, the fantastic pitstops in Spa also contributed to our strong showing there, so there are some things we can do this weekend to try to make the race work better for us. We need to see what the weather will do; normally it is hot which is good for the running we need to achieve, but it can also be quite demanding for the brakes. We will work hard to make the best possible result and enjoy a very nice track to go racing at.”
“It was very positive to see the progress we made in Spa. The team are working well together and we have a good momentum. I think we have to wait and see just how much of that performance we can carry over in Monza though, as the circuit and the demands upon the car are completely different. Much like Montreal, the low downforce characteristics are less well-suited to our car and we know that. Monza is a very special racetrack and I finished on the podium here in GP2 last year, so I am looking forward to returning this weekend. It’s the last European race, so we aim to do the best job we can and bring home a nice team result.”
John Booth, Team Principal
“It has been another tight turnaround as we head into the Italian Grand Prix weekend, but we’d better get used to that as it’s only the first of four back-to-backs in this second half of the season! This is also the last of the European races, so the remaining seven rounds will quite literally be a ‘long haul’. We’re in a good place right now and last weekend’s performance in Spa boosted everyone’s spirits. We do need to temper that, however, with the realistic expectations we have for this race, because we aren’t simply picking up where we left off. Monza is quite a different challenge as its high speed characteristics call for a low downforce set-up and we know from Canada that our car does not work as well at this type of track. We had so many areas to focus our attentions on this season and although we have seen good progress in most areas, Montreal and Monza were always going to be two races where we may not fare so favourably. Much like Spa, this is a race we always look forward to and many of us will take a bit of time out to enjoy some of the special things it has to offer, such as the old banking, which is always worth a visit.”