Monaco GP: Top Ten Driver Quotes

Jenson Button – Brawn (1st, Q3 – 1m 14.902s):
“It’s so important to qualify well in Monaco and I am really happy to have achieved pole position here today. It means a lot to me, they all do, but this one is so important for the race tomorrow. It was definitely a lap to remember and I was really on the edge the whole way round! It was a real fight today and I thought that Rubens would have the upper hand in qualifying as he has been so strong all weekend. I struggled on Thursday to find a good balance and we had a few issues that needed to be worked on, however we made some changes since then. I really have to thank everyone at the factory in Brackley and at Mercedes-Benz for producing such a strong and responsive car which allows us to make progress quickly. It’s not going to be easy in the race tomorrow as Monaco is just so unpredictable but starting from pole is without doubt the best position be in.”

Kimi Raikkonen – Ferrari (2nd, Q3 – 1m 14.927s):
“Second place is a nice result but I m disappointed that I missed out on pole by a few hundredths. Here, there is a much bigger difference between starting from first or second place. The car has improved and that can be seen from the performance level. Today, we felt ever more comfortable as the track s grip level improved bit by bit. I had some difficulties on the first run in Q1, but then things got better all the time. In the end, I had the possibility of doing another lap, but I went long at the first corner: I don t know if I could have done a better time. Tomorrow s race will be long and tough. The start will be very important and on the short straight here, the KERS will definitely be a help, but not as much as elsewhere. All the same, it s good to be back in the fight for the top places and I will give it my best shot to try and win, because that s the only thing that matters.”

Rubens Barrichello – Brawn (3rd, Q3 – 1m 14.927s):
“Well I had a great lap today at the end of the final qualifying session so Jenson’s lap must have been fantastic! I’m very happy with my position for the race tomorrow and really got everything possible out of the car today. Of course I’m sorry that I didn’t get pole position but the car has felt really good all weekend and we have a great chance for the race tomorrow. This is my 17th Monaco Grand Prix but the special feeling that you get from driving around here never changes and it is such a great challenge. It will be a really close and exciting race tomorrow and I’ll be giving my all for the win.”

Sebastian Vettel – Red Bull (4th, Q3 – 1m 15.271s):
“As I came out of Rascasse, Nakajima was almost stopped on the circuit and, you know, if you want to get everything right here in qualifying you have to have a clear lap. That wasn’t the case on the last half of my lap when I was stuck in traffic – when that happens you lose downforce and start to slide, so it’s anything but qualifying! It was a shame today as the car was good and we could have done better – but there are 78 laps to go, so let’s see what happens tomorrow.”

Felipe Massa – Ferrari (5th, Q3 – 1m 15.437s):
“Today s showing confirms we are capable of fighting for the top places. We were in with a chance of getting into the top three, but I never managed to get a clean lap, partly because of traffic and partly through some small slip ups. These things can easily happen in Monaco and fifth is still a good place to start the race. I am confident for tomorrow. It will be a long race, but the F60 is competitive. Step by step we are getting back to where we are used to being. The accident at the start of Q1? I had new brakes and the harder tyres, which struggled a bit more to get up to temperature, so as soon as I touched the brakes, I locked the wheels and ended up against the guardrail.”

Nico Rosberg  – Williams (6th, Q3 – 1m 15.455s):
“The first two sessions went fine today, but I was not happy with the final conclusion in Q3. P6 was not where I wanted to be and it should have been better. I had some balance problems in the last run and some traffic, particularly with Barrichello on my fastest lap, so I didn t manage to make the best of the circumstances. Anyway, that s the way it has played out and we just need to make the best of it. There is still the opportunity to have a good race tomorrow from a reasonable starting position, so I am still of the view that anything is possible.”

Heikki Kovalainen – Mclaren (7th, Q3 – 1m 15.516s):
“I’ve felt really comfortable with the car throughout the whole weekend. Obviously, we wanted to be on pole but didn’t manage that – let’s see how the race unfolds and where we’ll be after the first stops. Lewis was very unfortunate this afternoon – we are always at the limit around here and a little slip-up can put you into the barriers. I touched the guardrails three times during qualifying and I’m lucky that it didn’t have any negative consequences.”

Mark Webber – Red Bull (8th, Q3 – 1m 15.653s):
“That wasn’t too bad, we knew it was going to be very tight, but we have a reasonable strategy for tomorrow. There are some different ideas going round about what tyres everyone will start the race on, as the hard and soft tyres have different characteristics in race conditions. I’m reasonably happy with what I did today, maybe we could have done a different strategy in Q3 – it was my idea to do one run, but maybe we should have done two.”

Fernando Alonso – Renault (9th, Q3 – 1m 16.009s):
“Overall I’m happy with my performance as I did the best I could today. At the end of the session I was caught in a line of traffic, but honestly our ninth place reflects where our car is at the moment because I was 12th in Q1 and 9th in Q2. It’s clear that we still need to improve and find more speed.”

Kazuki Nakajima – Williams (10th, Q3 – 1m 17.344s):
“It was a good session for me, it is of course the first time I have made it into Q3 this season, so I do want to say thanks to the team for preparing a good car. I am pleased that I achieved a top ten slot as obviously grid position is crucial here and this is not a very easy track. I am confident I can have a good race tomorrow and our start position will certainly give me the chance to improve on our recent results.”