Pedro de la Rosa: The best achieve success in Monaco

Pedro de la Rosa: The best achieve success in Monaco

Pedro de la Rosa, Aston Martin F1 Team Ambassador, spoke from a driver’s perspective about the upcoming weekend in Monaco. The Spaniard once played six times for teams such as Arrows, Jaguar, Sauber and HRT – albeit not very successfully.

Question: How does a driver feel during the Monaco Grand Prix?
Pedro de la Rosa: From the very first training round you will feel both inspiration and pressure. From the moment you arrive at the track until the end of the weekend there is no time to relax. You have to constantly push yourself and gradually try to get into the right rhythm, so that only then can you start looking for the limit of what is possible.

In Monaco you have to be extremely focused. When an engineer tells you over the radio that you need to change engine settings or adjust brake balance with the steering wheel switches, timing is very difficult. This Grand Prix is ​​a real test for a Formula 1 driver.

Question: The Monaco Grand Prix has been on the Formula 1 calendar since 1950, from which the history of the World Championship dates back. What has changed since then and what remains the same?
Pedro de la Rosa: The asphalt surface has become much smoother. Some parts of the track used to be quite bumpy and at the start of the race weekend, when the track was still dusty, it was difficult to go full throttle as the cars bounced on the bumps and lost their stability.

The safety level on the highway has also become much higher. The organizers are working very effectively to surround the course with Armco barriers, fenders and safety nets to prevent a repeat of Alberto Ascari’s flight into the harbor waters, as was the case in 1955.

Otherwise, the circuit hasn’t changed much since the very first race in Monaco, and this is its distinguishing feature. It’s great that this song has its own unique character; the configuration is very similar to how it was from the beginning. If Ascari or Juan Manuel Fangio saw the track today, they would recognize it immediately. You can’t mistake it for anything.

Question: How will the AMR24 perform on this narrow and twisty track?
Pedro de la Rosa: The average speed in Monaco is very low and this requires unique chassis settings not used anywhere else. Lance Stroll and Fernando Alonso are very experienced drivers and after the first few laps of practice the team knows what to expect as it doesn’t take long for the drivers to get up to speed.

There will also be an opportunity to collect information about the operation of recently introduced technical innovations at the Monaco circuit. And the key to success in the race is good results in qualifying.

Q: Qualifying in Monaco is one of the most exciting motorsport shows. Tell us about the difficulties the riders will have to overcome on Saturday?
Pedro de la Rosa: Qualifying in Monaco is very important, and there you have to pay maximum attention to the settings that allow you to show good speed in one fast lap.

Before the start of qualifying you have the same fighting spirit as before the start of the Grand Prix and you are no less worried. Your state remains like this for the entire session, after which you feel extremely exhausted because the job is essentially 90% done. The most difficult part of the weekend is over and it is very difficult to sleep on the night from Saturday to Sunday because you have given everything and the adrenaline level is still very high. In general, qualifying for Monaco is the most important and exciting test.

Question: To what extent does success in Monaco depend on the skill of the driver?
Pedro de la Rosa: Perhaps more depends on the driver in Monaco than at any other circuit. The condition of the asphalt surface changes quickly, and if you manage to take advantage of this and gain an advantage, it can bring very tangible benefits during qualifying. If you manage to choose the right moment and start the decisive attempt in the last seconds of qualifying, you have the chance to do a nice lap.

This is one of those circuits where you have to arrive as late as possible in qualifying and give it your all. You have to attack to the limit. This requires maximum concentration and is associated with great stress, but if you manage to optimize the car settings for each corner on the track during a fast lap, it will pay off. Although this is extremely difficult to achieve.

This is possible only for those who can concentrate on solving these problems and at the same time go to the extreme, rushing within a few millimeters of the barriers. That’s why the best drivers always succeed in Monaco.

Source: F1 News

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