Q and A with Pastor Maldonado
Q. Your debut season had a great turnaround after the win scored at Monte Carlo; did you expect an easier start, or were you prepared to fight some initial problems?
Pastor Maldonado: During the winter testing I always tried to push very hard, and in the last sessions I was constantly in the top-5; that gave me a lot of confidence. I really didn't expect to meet reliability troubles, that prevented me from showing the real potential of the team and, of course, mine.
I'm sure that without these issues we would have been able to fight for the top, as happened at Monte Carlo and in the following races. In the last rounds things got progressively better, and my standing position improved as well.
Q. In the last four rounds you scored four points finishes, climbing up several positions in standings; what was the difference with the first rounds?
PM: When you don't finish races, it's difficult to show your true potential, and make anyone aware of how your good work is putting you in the right direction. I was sure, together with the team, that everything would have been fine at Bahrain. Unfortunately, it took until Monte Carlo to have visible results, but nothing really changed for me between the first two races and the rest of the season so far.
Q. You're currently 5th in standings, sharing the top-rookie honors with Nakajima. What's your goal for the remainder of the season?
PM: My first goal has always been to win races, and I always force myself to analyze problems and find a solution, together with the team. I don't have immediate expectations for the rest of the season, I'm simply going to do the best I can to win any single race in the schedule, and then - after the last race at Valencia - I'll turn back and evaluate my year. I'm confident I'll be quite satisfied.
Q. In the first race of the season, at Bahrain, you and your teammate Kohei Hirate were involved in an hard fight, while last week - at the Nurburgring – anything went on with a lot of fair play. Did something change in the relations you have with him?
PM: Actually, nothing has changed; we respect each other a lot, as drivers and as individuals. What happened in Bahrain was the result of a misunderstanding, and I don't think it will happen again. I also have to recognize that the team is filled with a great atmosphere since both of us started to achieve good results
Q. Where and how do you figure yourself in 2008?
PM: It's never easy to anticipate future, and if you're in motor racing, it's even less easy! In the last few years, I tried to do all I could to realize my dream and have a chance in Formula One. That's my goal for life, and people know that one of my life principles is to never surrender.