Thoughts from Martins, Maini and Iwasa

FIA Formula 2: A warm welcome to the top three qualifiers for the FIA Formula 2 Feature Race here at Silverstone. In third place, Ayumu Iwasa for DAMS. In second place, Kush Maini for Campos Racing and taking his second pole in as many weekends, it is our pole sitter Victor Martins for ART Grand Prix. Victor, what a week you’ve had in terms of Qualifying, you’re absolutely flying at the moment.

Victor Martins: It was another good day I would say. Friday we’ve always been quick and always been fighting for pole position. Now I have three, two in a row from Austria and now. Honestly, we did a mega job today, the team also. I’ve had a great car since this morning and in Qualifying was just all about getting a clean lap, getting there from the first push with the soft tyres and then waiting to see if I would have another opportunity or if there was traffic or yellow flags. Honestly it was quite a messy session, with yellow flags and double yellows and all those kinds of things and Red Flags, but we managed it well. We got up there from the first run and then were confident on the second one also, so it’s a nice feeling.

FIA Formula 2: As you say, you had a very nice car today but what do you need to be quick around Silverstone from your car?

Martins: I won’t say the secret but honestly, it’s to get the tyres in the window and then getting a good confidence in the car because there are a lot of high-speed corners, Maggotts, Becketts – they are quite difficult to get them right. Just warm-up procedure, to have a clean one and then delivering, just have a clean lap and on the car, having good car, a good front and a good rear. Having that good stability will bring you a pole position.

FIA Formula 2: You touched on the fast, flowing nature of Silverstone. How tough is that going to be in the races to manage that?

Martins: I have seen from last year that it wasn’t really difficult because it was quite a cool temperature. Tomorrow maybe it will rain and on Sunday, maybe also so we’ll need to adapt in terms of weather conditions but of course if it’s warmer and a lot warmer than today, it will be difficult. We have the hard tyre and I think we can bring them a long way to the end so let’s see. We need to analyse a few things about last year and again now in Qualifying and FP, what are the key points to work on for the races, and then on myself to have a clean one.

FIA Formula 2: Well best of luck with that Victor, very well done to you. Kush, coming to you now, so close at the top in the end. Just tell us about your quickest lap, do you think there was anything left in it in the end?

Kush Maini: Honestly it was a very close session first of all, but I don’t know. In Austria last week I qualified fourth and honestly that felt like a better lap than today. I really love this place. In my junior career, I’ve come up through British Championships, so I’ve got a good amount of mileage at this track and it seems to suit me, so I was very confident going into this weekend. Free Practice threw a massive spanner in the works and we were scratching our heads so super happy that the team brought it back and we were fighting for pole. So I’ll definitely take that.

FIA Formula 2: You made quite a jump on the second lap in the session today, what did you find?

Maini: Honestly, I was P6 with the first and really not happy with the balance so I came in and made a small change and it seemed to iron out a few of the issues. Like I said, it wasn’t the cleanest lap but I’m happy I completed it because it was tricky out there with the wind.

FIA Formula 2: In terms of race results Kush it’s been quite tough for you recently. Just how much do you need a good result this weekend?

Maini: I need a good result every weekend but sometimes it’s not how it goes. In Austria we had great one lap pace but struggled in the races. We had a good start to the season but I think our main focus should be the race trim because I feel in Qualifying, we have a car to compete for pole so this weekend is the perfect start. We’re on the front row so it’s the perfect place to put our stuff together and hopefully go for the win.

FIA Formula 2: Ok well best of luck to you. Ayumu coming to you now, late improvement from you during the session, just how satisfied are you with how it went?

Ayumu Iwasa: Actually I was not expecting that improvement in the second push but I think pole position was possible because as you saw, I made a big mistake at Turn 6 on the first push when I had the overall best sector one and best sector three. As a result, I was missing six-tenths compared to my best sector two, so it was a really big loss. I have a pretty big level of frustration about this, but I think what was positive was the car was amazing. We had the potential and I think it’s positive for the races.

FIA Formula 2: Well, you say the car was amazing over one lap, what do you expect from it over a race distance?

Iwasa: Of course, there are some targets in the race. The car has to be good on the long run for the tyre management but also, the driver should work on the tyre management well enough. So I think the combination between the car and the driver will be quite important in long runs. And then if I remember well the overtaking at this track wasn’t so easy last year, so I have to think about it a bit and I will try my best.

FIA Formula 2: Well, best of luck to you.