Esteban has good reason to be in a joyous mood following a strong race at Silverstone last weekend that saw the Frenchman climb six places from his grid position. The Circuit de Catalunya is another one of his favourite tracks, and he’ll be looking to replicate his past form here where he scored his best result in Formula 1 with P5 back in 2017.
What do you like about racing in Barcelona?
Barcelona is a bit like the home for Formula 1 – in a way - with all the testing we do there in the winter. It’s a track where I had my best result in Formula 1: fifth place in 2017. I’ve always had success there and had really good feelings going there as it’s one of my favourite tracks. I’m looking forward to it and aiming for a solid result.
What are the main challenges of a lap there?
In general, it’s a big challenge for the cars and the drivers. Sector 1 and 2 are fast and tricky with the tyres generating a lot of heat through the quick corners like Turns 3 and 9. You arrive into the final sector just trying to get the car home as the rears tend to get hot and you lose a bit of grip. It’s a technical challenge, but it’s one I enjoy. Looking at how we performed in Silverstone, the car should be strong there too, especially in the low-speed Sector 3. Everyone is working hard during these three consecutive races, so we must keep the motivation for this one as well and target some good points.
How do you assess the second Silverstone race?
I was really happy after the race on Sunday. We did the best we could to climb six places and into the points. The team did a great job on the strategy call and then executing it with a lot of communicating with when I had to push or hold back. It worked well, the pit-stop was awesome and then it was about keeping focused to manage the tyres and make sure we reached the chequered flag. We know we have to qualify higher up the order. We’ll keep working on that area and hopefully it will pay off over the next couple of races.