Issued by Trident Racing.
Q: You were one of the “men to watch” in this winter’s silly season. Can you explain why you chose to join Trident Racing for your 2008 title bid?
A: We kept all our options open at the end of last season, testing with a few teams to evaluate the opportunities. I didn’t test with Trident, but obviously know their capabilities and how good their package is, and I know they want to win are always pushing hard to achieve that.
Q: What do you expect from this partnership and what are your goals for the 2008 season?
A: I expect to build a good relationship, bonding quickly and getting on the pace with the new car. We’ll have to push to get on top of the car as quickly as possible, so we can be winning races straight away.
Q: In the 2007 season you had, for the first time, to deal with a new car, a lot of unknown circuits, a whole new environment. How difficult is to be a successful rookie driver in the GP2 Series?
A: It is quite difficult as a rookie in GP2. The car isn’t easy to drive, you don’t know the track and need to learn while staying focused. There’s not much track time so it’s not easy, but easier at tracks that you know, like Silverstone where my results were better. I’ll still have a couple of tracks without any prior experience. The street race in Valencia will be new to everyone, and Hockenheim will be new to me.
Q: What about your driving style? What’s your favourite kind of racetrack?
A: I like all the circuits which are a challenge and enjoy all sorts, from the fast, flowing tracks like Silverstone and Spa, to the tight, twisty Monaco with its close barriers. I particularly like Turkey, one of the newer Hermann Tilke circuits, that was fun to drive.
Q: When and why did your motorsport passion start?
A: I started karting as a hobby when I was young, having been introduced to it by my Dad. Like many young boys, I had a passion for cars. I was quickly hooked on it and after a few lessons, my Dad bought a car. We didn’t have much money, so we put the seats down on our car and put the kart in the back of it to go racing. It was something to do outside of school and I got to spend time with my Dad, preparing the kart for racing.
Q: What’s your opinion over the great moment had by several young British drivers in the motorsport panorama?
A: I think Nico Rosberg was the first of the younger generation to grab an F1 seat, then he was followed by Lewis, and there’s also Vettel in there now as well. So there’s a move for younger drivers to reach F1 and GP2 is recognised as one of the prime series to draw from. It’s great to see British talent coming through.
Q: You have two famous drivers like Mark Blundell and Martin Brundle in your management group. How important is their influence on your career?
A: Mark and Martin have a wealth of experience, both on and off the track, they’ve been around for many years, so they understand the way that motorsport works and are at every F1 race, so are on hand to give advice and support me at my race weekends. They are always on the end of a phone for me and we talk daily to keep abreast of plans and activities, and they have been very valuable to me in concluding agreements, such as this one with Trident.