2011 FORMULA1 MONACO GRAND PRIX
• MONACO, 26th – 29TH MAY 2011 •
• NICK: “The atmosphere is amazing and it’s a crazy race” • Vitaly: “When people think of F1, they think of Monaco” • Eric Boullier: “I think our car will be good here” • James Allison: “Historically our strong performance at Monaco owes much to our cars’ capability on bumpy tracks” •
Q&A: Nick Heidfeld
Lotus Renault GP • Race Driver • Car 9
“The atmosphere is amazing and it’s a crazy race” NICK TELLS US HOW MUCH MONACO IS A GREAT SPECTACLE AND EXPLAINS THAT HIS RACE IN SPAIN HAS FILLED HIM WITH CONFIDENCE GOING INTO THE 6TH RACE OF THE SEASON You made a strong performance in Spain after starting the race at the very back of the grid?
Talking about the tyres, which is a hot topic at the moment, how do you expect them to behave?
Yes, I was satisfied with finishing eighth after starting last. I had to be determined and fight through the field with a number of overtaking manoeuvres so it was good fun for me behind the wheel – I enjoyed the race a lot. And similarly to Turkey, with one or two laps more I could have gained a couple of positions from the two Mercedes cars, but it was still a good result and gives me lots of confidence going into Monaco.
Well, over the course of the weekend, the track surface has historically improved more than any other circuit on the F1 calendar. This time around it will be interesting to see by how much and in what way it improves because these Pirelli tyres work very differently from the Bridgestone tyres we used previously. I expect tyres will be a key factor in Monaco, as they have been at the other races too.
Monaco is a very different track from the Circuit de Cataluña. The circuit is not a dedicated race track which means it is used by public vehicles. It is more bumpy than a race track, but the surface is actually very smooth meaning it is very slippery. We will be using Pirelli’s softest tyres for this race, and this will be a key factor. It will be interesting to see how we can compete there, but in the past the car has been well-suited to the circuit and I’m confident it will be the same this year.
Well Monaco is one of my favourite circuits and it usually a really fun race. The schedule is unique as we run on Thursday (starting a day earlier than usual) but we do not drive at all on Friday. We then return to action on Saturday – with P3 and Qualifying – and the Race
Looking ahead to Monaco – how do you think the team can compete there?
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Tell us more about the experience of the Monaco Grand Prix – it’s known to be quite a busy few days…
on Sunday. Even though I have competed here many times, it does feel different to the other races and a little strange when you are used to the normal race schedule. But, you have to remember Monaco is its own race – it is and will always remain unique.
What elements of the Monaco race make it so special and memorable?
Well, if I had to recommend a race for spectators to go to I would tell them to go to Monaco – it is such a special event. The location is fantastic and there is such an amazing atmosphere all around us, it’s a really crazy race. It is not the easiest circuit for the team to work at, as it’s such a small location, but it is an essential part of Formula 1 and it is a great spectacle for everyone involved.
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Q&A: Vitaly Petrov
Lotus Renault GP • Race Driver • Car 10
“When people think of F1, they think of Monaco”
Vitaly describes the special feeling surrounding Monaco, and how he believes the team can compete at the top end this weekend
You had a difficult race in Barcelona at the weekend – what was your take on events there? Yes, it was difficult and naturally I was disappointed that I could not take advantage of the strong position I secured for myself in qualifying. I could have had an even higher position going into the race, but in qualifying the middle sector of my last lap was weak. In the race itself, I did not drive so successfully in certain parts after I stopped, but what I did learn from the experience is that ideally we would like to have more new, fresh tyres. Tyre degradation was a real factor there, and I think it affected my drive on Sunday.
What are going to be the key aspects to concentrate on in Monaco? It’s a different type of race, a one-off. Qualifying will be very important. I feel we can qualify
for the race very strongly and near to the front – this will be the key here, of that there’s no doubt. If you don’t qualify well, it makes it very difficult to move up a long way because there are not too many overtaking opportunities. It’s a tight circuit and opportunities are at a premium so Saturday will be an absolutely crucial day for us.
Do you feel driving at Monaco is something special? It is, it really is. It’s an unusual race, different to the others because of the layout, the schedule over the weekend and how close spectators are to the action. It is a place where, as a driver, you really have to concentrate because it is a tight circuit. But, I have good memories there because I finished second there in GP2 back in 2009 so I’m looking forward to coming back and trying to achieve some more
success. What you also have to remember is that Monaco is a massive fixture not just in motorsport but in all sport. When people think of F1, they think of the Monaco race. For that very reason, we know this is the big one.
How would you compare being an F1 driver now compared to this time last year?
Well, we have the KERS and Drag Reduction system (DRS) to deal with so there is considerably more for a driver to think about in the cockpit. At the moment, it is good having them (KERS and DRS) because it helps the overtaking considerably, so I think it’s a good thing. For me, this is not the main issue at the moment – the tyres are what we have to understand because these are affecting the outcomes of races.
“ Qualifying will be very important. I feel we can qualify for the race very strongly and near to the front”
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Team Principal and Managing Director
A wORD WITH THE BOSS
After mixed fortunes in Barcelona, Eric looks ahead to Monaco – a race that traditionally fares Enstone cars well
“in Free Practice and Qualifying, DRS use is unrestricted. The teams will therefore attempt to use the wing as much as possible around the lap”
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It was a race of contrasting fortunes in Spain, what are your emotions following such a mixed result?
As we look to Monaco this week, what are your thoughts going into this unique race?
On the one hand it was frustrating. Vitaly qualified sixth on the grid and could have been even quicker on his qualifying lap on Saturday. During the race he dropped some places, so considering these factors, we did have greater expectations with his car. On the other hand, we are pleased for Nick who started the race at the back of the grid and came all the way up to 8th before crossing the line, so that was positive. On top of that, he was fast chasing both Mercedes so it could have been even better.
Historically Enstone cars have been good in Monaco, and I think our car will be good there this time too. The tyre strategies will be very complicated, but it could also work well for us so we will see how we get on. The track itself is so different to anything else you will see in the sport’s calendar – it is twisting and turning with very few chances to pass other cars. Not only that, but the track evolves over the weekend – because of the fact it is a public road normally – so we can expect to see cars improve their performance after Thursday. As a team, we can hardly wait for the weekend.
The season is looking more settled now, and a pattern appears to be emerging with race results – what does the team need to do to keep up with the improved Mercedes team? We’re not very far away at all. Our car seems to be fast, we just still need to find some consistency in our way of creating successful strategies and, of course, pit stops. If we do that, we will be there. If we do not miss any laps (in qualifying), we will get a good grid position for the race, and during the race itself it looks like our car can compete for top six. Once we are all in line together, we will be there.
As a Team Principal, what is the experience like at the Monaco GP where you feel that much closer to the action?
The Monaco weekend is like stopping breathing! We have a very busy weekend, with less sleep and lots of work to ensure we get the best we possibly can out of it. I’m confident we will do well here.
How significant is the Monaco race to the sport of F1?
Monaco is one of the key races we have in the calendar, for historical reasons, for glamour reasons and even for sporting reasons because it’s a very specific track. It’s a very unique race on the calendar, which makes Formula 1 magic.
With DRS authorised for the race, do you think it can be used safely and at what stage of the lap can we expect to see it? The concern about DRS usage in Monaco is focussed on its potential use in the tunnel. This will not be a factor in the race, as the DRS sector will be on the main straight only. However, in Free Practice and Qualifying, DRS use is unrestricted. The teams will therefore attempt to use the wing as much as possible around the lap. There will be some places where it will be possible to use without difficulty, and other places where the drivers will not feel confident. In this respect it is identical to every other track so far this season – the driver has to judge where he can safely activate the DRS. All attention is focussed on the tunnel, as there will be a good lap time benefit for using the DRS here if the car can manage it. Some feel that the incentive to benefit will force drivers to take unnecessary risks. My own view is that the drivers will build up their confidence gradually during free practise and by the time qualifying arrives they will know in how much of the tunnel they can safely use the DRS wing. Often in the past the tunnel has been very tricky to take flat out at the start of the race weekend when the track is poor. This has not caused the drivers to crash, they have simply built up their pace gradually until they were confident that it could be taken flat – I think the same approach will emerge with the DRS.
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“Historically our strong performance at Monaco owes much to our cars’ capability on bumpy tracks” James discusses LRGP’s opportunity leading into the F1 calendar’s most unique track
Monaco is the first real high downforce race of the season – what changes can we expect to the car, and how long does it take to develop such a package? There won’t be big changes to LRGP for Monaco. We will run a higher downforce top rear wing, but the days of highly specialised bodywork kits for Monaco are a bit behind us. Monaco is less power sensitive and more downforce sensitive than other circuits. However, the profit from this is not massive and the opportunity cost of producing Monaco specific parts has to be carefully considered. In general it is a better strategy to spend your aerodynamic resources attempting to produce improvements that benefit the widest possible range of circuits.
Historically, Enstone cars have performed well at high downforce tracks – will we see a repeat of that here?
I hope so. The historically strong performance of our cars at Monaco and Hungary probably owes more to the bumpy nature of the tracks than to the downforce level in particular. Our cars have tended to handle
well over the bumps and this gives the drivers confidence to push the car to its limits.
Pirelli’s supersoft tyres will make an appearance – what impact do you expect this to have? We ran the super soft during winter testing and, as you might expect, it offers grip gains over the soft tyre at the expense of increased wear and degradation rate. Monaco is less demanding on the tyres than the winter testing tracks, but I suspect it will still prove to be a stern test of the durability of the supersoft.
With frequent pit stops becoming a regular feature this year, will this make the race more of a lottery?
All pit stops carry with them the risk of substantial loss of time and track position as a result of errors. These errors can have a decisive effect on the outcome of a race. All the teams know this, and are all working hard to try to eliminate all sources of error. At LRGP we had a couple of poor races at the start of the year with our pit stops. Since then our crew has put in a lot of effort to bring us back to the correct level. The prime focus is to make repeatable stops first
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and foremost before gradually chipping away at the stop times.
Much has been placed on the use of tyres in Qualifying – will this take on an added importance in Monaco? I’m not sure that it will have added importance, but it will remain an important consideration. If the indications from free practice reveal that the tyres are hanging together in race trim, then the inherent difficulty of overtaking at Monaco will mean it is less crucial to conserve virgin tyres. If the tyres look critical in free practice, then there will be a very strong incentive to save sets for the race.
With the proximity of the barriers and risk of contact, is the suspension modified for Monaco? Monaco always involves a few brushes with the armco and sometimes a bit of contact with other cars. LRGP has historical information about the sort of loads put into the suspension as a result of these minor incidents and the strength required to withstand them is factored in when the suspension is designed at the start of the year.
“If the tyres look critical in free practice, then there will be a very strong incentive to save sets for the race”
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TURNs 8 + 9
The contrast of heading from daylight into the darkness of the tunnel is a unique aspect of this circuit. The tunnel is more of a corner than many expect it to be. Taken flat out, this is the fastest part of the track
MONACO A set-up guide
Bumpy as cars come into Mirabeau. Cars take a special line here to avoid a bump on the normal racing line
Special front suspension needed for hairpin bend – the slowest and tightest corner on the F1 calendar
Monaco is a circuit where good torque and driveability are required
The lack of straights mean that the brakes are reasonably hot throughout, because there is insufficient time to allow cooling down. The heaviest braking takes effect coming out of the tunnel into the chicane
TURNS 10 + 11
Some good kerb riding needed here at the chicane
Due to the low speeds, and low aerodynamic grip, good mechanical grip is essential. The surface is unique and bumpy, so softer springs are needed to allow more travel and better ride. Special front suspension, with extra steering lock, is needed for the hairpin turn 6
2 3 4
Called ‘The Swimming Pool’ or ‘La Piscine’, this is very quick. Cars come into it at 220kph before braking very hard at the exit
6 5 5. TYRES
Monaco is easier on tyres than other places on the calendar. Pirelli will take their softest compounds
DRS is used coming out of this turn on the pit straight
TURN 18 4. REAR WING
DRS is used in Monaco as it is at other circuits, though its impact will be low due to minimal overtaking possibilities
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6. FRONT WING
Known as La Rascasse, this corner is very tight and taken slowly
The cars tend to run with almost maximum front wing because of the slow speeds
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monaco GRAND PRIX THE REST OF THE NEWS
TOTAL TAKES YOU TO THE MOON Get ready to be amazed. By visiting www.total-moon-race.com you will be taken to a new experience created by TotaL – OFFICIAL Partner of Lotus Renault GP
Sir Jackie Stewart and Gérard Lopez
SIR JACKIE STEWART As you’ve probably noticed by now, one of the most famous names in motor racing, Sir Jackie Stewart, is on board with Genii Business Exchange, strategic partner of Lotus Renault GP Sir Jackie, Formula 1 world champion in 1969, 1971 and 1973, had a remarkable racing record, with 27 wins from 99 starts but subsequently became well known in international business circles, and it’s this unique combination of talents which makes Sir Jackie Stewart and the Genii Business Exchange a perfect match. “It is a pleasure for me to work with Genii Business Exchange,” he says. “This association allows me to enter new fields of business. As Formula One visits four continents per annum it offers a fantastic platform to engage with some of the most progressive, successful and established individuals in the world of commerce.” Sir Jackie’s achievements on and off the race track earned him a royal knighthood in 2001. “Motorsport developed for me an almost unique platform to develop from being a sportsman that allowed me to enter the
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world of business and commerce,” he says “I was fortunate that it was Formula One Grand Prix racing that I chose as my specialty within the world of motorsport. “Formula One has global reach and is tied to the automotive industry which is the third largest manufacturing industry in the world. Unlike many other sports, its high technology has exceeded beyond most people’s vision or even dreams. I believe my new association with Genii Business Exchange offers us both exciting new opportunities. “Genii’s success in the field of high technology companies is unsurpassed in the world of sports. The new technologies that we are using today have global reach because of the internet, websites and the new discoveries of finding other ways of
harlie Sweetheart is a 10-year-old boy who is a passionate Formula 1 fan, fascinated by the conquest of space. When his mother tells him to come down for dinner, he is lost in his dreams. Sitting in his single-seater ready to race in the first Moon Grand Prix, the pressure mounts. Charlie knows that the Total Moon Race is his race that his moment of glory is at hand. The greatest are there, but Charlie who’s steeped in the feats of his heroes is fully prepared. May the best man win! On this breathtaking short movie, the action has been configured to replicate the Moon’s low gravity, transporting viewers to a new dimension and launching them into the extreme conditions of an incredibly realistic Formula 1 race. For Total, it’s a way of illustrating both its commitment to Lotus Renault GP and the efficiency of its products. The virtual race serves to highlight the critical and very real role played by Total fuels and lubricants in improving engine performance to reduce fuel consumption and CO² emissions. Just before the action starts in the film, a few introductory words set the tone: “Tomorrow’s fuels and lubricants will be the result of a judicious blend of innovation, enthusiasm, experience, and boldness. And because dreams have always inspired invention, who knows, maybe one day we’ll be testing our products on the Moon…”
doing business. “Historically I have been a strong believer in long term relationships with blue chip, well established multinationals, such as my 40 year relationship with the Ford Motor Company that I retired from in 2004. I am with the Rolex Watch Company who I have been contracted to since 1968 and I am on the board of Moët Hennessy in the UK, through a relationship that has existed since 1969. “Formula One is constantly progressive in a technologically challenging environment and constantly breaking new ground. Success takes leadership and success does not come easily. I have always believed you seldom go wrong if you under promise and over deliver. You exceed peoples´ expectations.”
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MONACO GRAND PRIX THE REST OF THE NEWS
MONACO IN NUMBERS 3 44.7 60 285
This is the highest g-force the drivers experience in the lap at turn 4 for 3.5 seconds That’s the percentage of the lap spent at full throttle
This is the number of gear changes per lap In km/h this is the top speed, just after the tunnel
13 50 270 500
Lotus Racing GP fan Nick Tarielashvili sent us this picture of a Rodgersia – the prosperity symbol of Lotus Renault GP – we rather like it. Nick wins a signed cap and will be part of our Facebook competition at the end of June.
The percentage of the lap spent braking In km/h this is the lowest apex speed at turn 6 In km/h this is the highest apex speed at turn 2 This is the longest distance on full throttle
WHERE CAN YOU FOLLOW US?
On our website, to start with:
The five golden rules for Monaco
(English, French, German, Russian and Polish versions)
The four-time French F1 World Champion has won in the streets of the Principality on no fewer than four occasions: 1984, ‘85, ‘86 and ‘89. He tells us the five golden rules that must be followed in order to triumph at the most challenging track in the world 1. Avoid the traps at the start: In Monaco, you could say that half of the race is already decided when the lights go out. It’s so difficult to pass on this twisting and turning circuit that every place gained at the start is a huge bonus for the rest of the race. In addition, collisions are frequent at this stage of the race. 2. Keep concentration: Drivers must view Monaco as a very unique race. It is a long weekend, they have to get in the right frame of mind and prepare themselves from a psychological point of view. During the race itself, some drivers find it very difficult to retain concentration for almost two hours, and it is towards the end of the race that mistakes can prove very costly. There are more distractions in Monaco than anywhere else – you can see the giant screens, the spectators – a lapse of attention for a second and you will go off from the track. Experience is a great help here for both drivers and engineers. Shrewdness rather than brute force pays off better here.
3. Do your homework: This year, the Thursday sessions will
between race and qualifying trims. With the first session, you’ll need to make sure that you can start from a high enough position on the grid. With the second, you have to ensure that you can reach the finish line in the best possible condition. You should never be surprised, and be prepared to react instantly to any event.
4. Look after your tyres: One of the secrets of success in the Principality is not to drive at the limit from the first to the last lap. Unlike traditional circuits, you have to decide on a multi-faceted race plan – push when the track is clear or just before a pitstop and base your speed on that of your rival. Pushing like crazy all the time will only have one outcome – contact with the guardrail and retirement from the race. Setting up the car is critically important.
5. Keep something in reserve: The most important thing in taking up this challenge is to have confidence in your car and never drive beyond your capacities. Also, bear in mind that the track is different with every lap – it changes constantly from the start to the finish.
be even more important than before. It will be crucial to split the work Alain’s son Nicolas will drive a Lotus Renault GP F1 car during the World Series by Renault taking place in Nurburgring on 17-19 June 2011
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On Twitter: twitter.com/OfficialLRGP On Facebook: Lotus-Renault-GP-The-Official Vitaly on Twitter: twitter.com/vitalypetrov10 Nick on Twitter: twitter.com/NickHeidfeld Bruno on Twitter: twitter.com/BSenna Romain on Twitter: twitter.com/Rgrosjean
GUIDE TO MONACO Describe Monaco in three words Sunny, hilly, adrenalin
Favourite restaurants and bars in Monaco? I like some very simple places, with a relaxed atmosphere, and good, simple food. I like to go to Sass café, La Saliere and La Spiaggia. What do you think of the track? It’s my favourite – it’s a flowing track and very challenging. It requires a huge level of concentration at all time. The slightest mistake means a crash. It is also very technical. Winning in Monaco is something every driver wants to do. The place, the atmosphere, the fans, make the race something really quite special. Best memory of Monaco? Without a doubt, winning GP2 there in 2008. It was quite emotional to hear the Brazilian national anthem, knowing what my uncle had been able to do in these streets in days gone by.
Who’s who at LRGP ? • Gerard Lopez Chairman • Eric Boullier Team Principal and Managing Director • Patrick Louis Chief Operating Officer • James Allison Technical Director • Naoki Tokunaga Deputy Technical Director • Martin Tolliday Chief Designer • Dirk de Beer Head of Aerodynamics • Steve Nielsen Sporting Director • Alan Permane Chief Race Engineer • Gavin Hudson Chief Mechanic • Jean-Marc Bories Chief Marketing Officer • Stephen Curnow Chief Commercial Officer • Stephane Samson Head of Communications TRACKSIDE Hospitality • The girls in our hospitality who will look after our guests are Simona, Adriana and Daniela
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More images available online: www.lotusrenaultgp.com
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Team Principal and Managing Director
Lotus Renault GP Press Office Address Lotus Renault GP Whiteways Technical Centre Enstone Oxfordshire OX7 4EE UK Telephone
+44 (0) 1608 678 000
+44 (0) 1608 678 609
Media contacts Stephane Samson, Head of Communications +44 (0) 7827 307 185 email@example.com Clarisse Hoffmann, Senior Press Officer +44 (0) 7747 468 273 firstname.lastname@example.org Ben Nichols, Press Officer +44 (0) 7748 920 072 email@example.com Andy Stobart, Press Officer +44 (0) 7703 366 151 firstname.lastname@example.org Website lotusrenaultgp.com Facebook facebook.com/pages/Lotus-Renault-GP-The-Official Twitter twitter.com/OfficialLRGP
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