Grosjean: Monza should suit our car better than Spa
"I still have a massive smile on my face!"
Fresh off the back of his Belgian third place, Romain Grosjean sets out his targets for a similarly strong performance in Monza.
How goes the high after your Spa podium?
I still have a massive smile on my face about it! What a race and what a performance from everyone in the team. We have a great car in the E23 and it worked so well around Spa Francorchamps. Everything came together so well. I probably drove the best race of my career, but it was thanks to the hard work of everyone at Enstone that I was able to perform at the top of my ability on that day. It felt almost like a race win.
Could you have passed Sebastian Vettel if he hadn’t had his tyre issue?
I was closing in on him pretty quickly and I’d have done everything I could to get past him. He’s a pretty tough competitor, but I was VERY determined at that point. It’s only a shame that he did have his tyre issue on track as I was really looking forward to fighting him for that position and I’m convinced I would have taken the final podium spot.
How do you like Monza, the Theatre of Speed?
I like Monza a lot because it is so distinctive. It’s a great track that has a lot of racing history. This makes it nice for us to compete at a place where all our heroes raced too. There is a lot of atmosphere around the track and to race in the setting of the royal park makes for a really special ambience. Of course the Ferrari fans are a big part of it and it is really nice competing at such a legendary venue.
Any special memories from Monza?
One of my first ever races in cars was at Monza back in 2003 when I was driving in a category called Formula Lista where I won and then went on to win every race of my rookie season in that formula. I have had some other big results at Monza too throughout my career, so it holds lots of good memories.
What aspirations do you have for Monza this weekend?
On paper, Monza should suit our car better than Spa so in theory a podium could be possible again! Of course, we don’t know how our performance relative to our rivals will stack up until we get there, but I’m certainly going out for the strongest result possible, as I always do.
What’s the key to a strong result in Italy?
You need your car to be as slippery as possible and quick in a straight line, and in that regard we’ve looked pretty strong so far in 2015. Then we have to manage the tyre degradation. Also for us it will be tricky in the big corners like the Lesmos and the Ascari chicane because the less downforce you have then the more difficult it is to get good grip in the turns. It is a tough compromise but one I am sure that the team will get the best solution possible.
Pizza or Pasta?
I know a great Pizzeria close to the track, so it is pizza all the way for me. But I am always careful because it can catch up very easily on the weight side of things! Italy is a magic place and the cultural aspects are a big part of that. Like a lot of drivers I did a lot of racing there, even since karting days so I feel like I know the country very well. I don’t know anyone who does not enjoy being in Italy.