GP2 Series: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the press conference for today’s feature race here in Silverstone. Joining us today are race winner Jules Bianchi from Lotus ART, in second place we have Christian Vietoris from Racing Engineering, and in third place we have Marcus Ericsson from iSport International. Jules, congratulations on your first win in GP2: how does it feel?
Jules Bianchi: Really good! It was a tough race: the beginning was quite tough with the rain conditions, which was really bad, but it was safety car start which was easier for me, and after that I made a big gap to I think 8 seconds, but after the stop I was really slow. Christian pitted earlier and he was really quick, so we had a small fight (laughs) which was quite good, really fair, and in the end I finished first so it was a good strategy. I think maybe we could do better pitting one lap before, but I’m really happy: I really want to thank the team because the car was really good, we were quick in both conditions, rain and dry, and this was important. Now we will work tonight for tomorrow, because we still have to improve a bit, and we’ll see.
GP2 Series: It’s always hard to set up a car for these conditions, but as you say you had the pace in both the wet and dry: how were the tyres in both conditions?
Jules: Obviously it was a lot better in the rain than when the track dried up, because I was a bit slow, and the behaviour of the car was a bit forced but still good: I could do a gap with Christian after our fight, so at the end I think we were really well balanced.
GP2 Series: How important is this victory for you and the team after everything that has happened so far this year?
Jules: Really important, because at the beginning of the season, which was quite difficult for me, it was important to show everybody that we are still here, we are still fighting for the victory if maybe not for the championship because we are quite far away, but anyway I will do my best, I will take it race by race to see what happens, but for sure it’s good for everybody that they can see that we are here.
Starting from pole, Jules won race 1 of GP2 in the rainy Silverstone! It was his first win in GP2 Main Series. Well done, Jules!
GP2 Series: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the press conference for today’s qualifying session here in Silverstone. Joining us today from pole position is Jules Bianchi from Lotus ART, in second place we have Alvaro Parente from Carlin, and in third place we have Romain Grosjean from Dams. Starting with you Jules, congratulations on pole position today: it wasn’t quite the session we were all hoping for, but how was it for you
Jules Bianchi: It was a really difficult qualy for everybody, I think. We started and I tried to push a lot from the first lap, then on my second lap I saw that maybe I would have some traffic in the final few corners but I didn’t: it was quite a quick lap and it was pole position! I think we did the right strategy, and we thought a lot about it before the qualy with the team: I really want to thank them because we did a really good job, the car was really good and now we are pole for tomorrow!
GP2 Series: We didn’t get to run with the slicks this afternoon: how were the wets performing?
Jules: The tyres were good: I could feel some little degradation! (laughs) We’ll see tomorrow: if it’s raining it will be tough, but we have to see how to reduce this degradation in the rain. Anyway I’m really happy, because after some difficult races it’s good to be back on pole.
GP2 Series: You’ve got a big opportunity with the front guys on the leader board a bit further back: what are your hopes for tomorrow?
Jules: Obviously I don’t think a lot about the championship because I’m really far away: I’ll just take it race by race and try to do my best, try to do some good results, and that’s it. Tomorrow I start from pole, I will want to win and get some points: that’s it!
aims to turn things around at Silverstone
This GP2 series reaches a critical point in the season with no less than three rounds taking place in the next four weeks, with a maximum of sixty points up for grabs. It will be a challenging time for teams and drivers who set up camp at Silverstone as from today, with track action for the fifth round of the season getting underway on Friday.
Jules Bianchi returns to Silverstone, having run there last year for the first time. “It’s a track I liked right from the start,” said the 21 year old FDA student. “The sequence of fast corners is demanding but gives you a great feeling. The only downside of the English track is that’s it’s difficult to pull off an overtaking move. The corners are very high speed and so, following a car closely produces a significant loss of aerodynamic downforce. That makes the car harder to control and increases tyre wear.”
After an unlucky weekend at the Valencia street circuit, Bianchi summed up the situation, analysing a less than satisfactory period. “My position in the first part of the championship has been compromised by several errors on my part. As far as the driver and the team are concerned, there are no problems in terms of performance, because, mishaps and the unexpected aside, things have always gone very well. This has pretty much compromised my expectations for the championship, but I’m not beating myself up over it. On the contrary, with a clear mind, I want to start winning as soon as possible.”
The Silverstone timetable sees a 30 minute free practice session at 10.55 on Friday, with 30 minutes of qualifying at 14.55. Race 1 takes place on Saturday at 14.40, run over 29 laps, with Sunday featuring the second and final race of the weekend at 9.30 over 14 laps. (all times are local GMT.)
On selected Thursdays across Formula 1’s European season, GPUpdate.net shares an insight to the up and coming stars of tomorrow. This time it’s a Frenchman who’s part of Ferrari’s exclusive young driver programme, dominated the 2009 F3 Euro Series and is now quick – if not a tad controversial – in GP2.
Name Jules Bianchi
Born 3 August 1989, Nice, France
Current series GP2
Career in a nut shell Karting -> French Formula Renault 2.0 -> Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 -> Formula 3 Euro Series -> GP2 Asia Series -> GP2
Did you know? Bianchi is the son of Mauro Bianchi, a triple GT World Champion. He is a great nephew of the late Lucien Bianchi, who competed in 19 F1 Grands Prix between 1959 and 1968, finishing on the podium for Cooper in the 1968 Monaco Grand Prix which was won by Graham Hill. Lucien also won the Le Mans 24 Hours.
Two minutes with Jules Bianchi…
How did you get interested in racing?
My father had a go-kart track, so I started very early when I was three years old. My family has always been involved in motor racing because my grandfather and great uncle were drivers around the 1960s, so I’ve been there all my life.
What is your greatest achievement so far?
For me it was probably Zandvoort 2009, when I won the two Formula 3 Masters races – starting P8 for one of them. So that was the greatest moment for me.
Do you have any racing heroes?
Yeah, Schumacher. Schumacher was my example and my favourite driver, for sure.
And finally…tell us something ridiculous about yourself please…
I always use the same underwear for racing. On a race weekend I wash it in the evening and that’s it, I then use it the next day. Why? It’s a superstition, that’s it really.