Gastaldi: It is always nice to come to Silverstone
"It is the home event for the factory"
Deputy Team Principal Federico Gastaldi previews the British Grand Prix.
Were any mountains climbed in Austria?
I would say we got half way up it! Pastor had arguably his best race of the season so far. He showed that he could fight for points and he was actually unlucky not to get his first of the season. I would not say that we came away with too much satisfaction because we were not rewarded with points but for Pastor the maximum was extracted from his race in Austria, so positives could be taken. Pastor was one of only four drivers to achieve his theoretical best lap in qualifying which shows when everything is right he can deliver. The team fought back with typical spirit from a really tough time in Montréal which says a lot about the team and the spirit we have. This gives us a good platform to achieve our aims and objectives for Silverstone, which is to add to our points tally. But first we have to match the slower speed corner performance of the E22 to the high speed performance.
Were you impressed by Romain’s tenacity from the pit lane start in Austria?
Yes I was. It is never easy coming back from the technical set back he suffered. Yet Romain showed the fighting spirit which he is famous for and which the team really appreciate. He made easy work of those immediately in front of him but then had some brake issues like a lot of our competitors did during the race. Romain remains upbeat and he knows that although it is taking longer than anyone expected, he can exploit the potential that exists in the E22. He is as hungry as ever.
Silverstone is not too dissimilar to Barcelona in that it is a technical circuit albeit quicker in nature. What can we expect back in England?
The momentum we got from the Spanish Grand Prix and the test afterwards was forgotten slightly after the tough three races since then. But we know that at a track like Silverstone we should be able to see similar performance and exploit the capabilities of the E22 and the powertrain package with the help of Renault Sport F1.
Will racing at home and so close to the factory be an advantage?
It is always nice to come to Silverstone, first and foremost because it is the home event for the factory and we get so much support. It is also good to race at iconic venues like Silverstone which has been hosting World championship Grands Prix since the start in 1950. It is very important to keep the heritage and history of circuits like Silverstone, Monza and Monaco going. It is part of the fabric and lifeblood of the sport.
From a motivation point of view we never lack that, wherever we race. But still I suppose there is an added ambience to a race that is on our doorstep. We want to achieve something for everyone at Enstone to have an extra special spring in their step on the Monday after the British Grand Prix.
Finally… things are going well in the World Cup for your home nation of Argentina so far. Any predictions?
I never predict! So far so good though but we have three more matches until the final. The quarter finals are over the Silverstone weekend but I doubt I will get the chance to see much if we are playing. Of course I hope we win though. At least we won’t play England which might have put me in danger at Silverstone!