A solid fourth place for Max but a disappointing mechanical failure for Daniel after a great charge from P19 to P6 at the Hockenheimring meant we left Germany with mixed feelings.
In those circumstances the best solution, to paraphrase the Foo Fighters, is to move on, on to the next one. So just a few days after packing down in the pouring rain in Germany we’re busy building the garage and getting the cars prepped at the Hungaroring.
It’s a circuit that has always been kind to the team, and with two wins and seven other podium finishes to our credit over the past nine outings we’re definitely looking forward to a better race in Budapest, as are our drivers…
The Hungarian Grand Prix is one you’ve generally done well at, with a win and two third places, so you must be looking forward to getting back to Budapest?
I like the Hungarian GP. Everyone always says it’s Monaco without walls, but it’s not, it’s Hungary! It’s fast, it’s normally really hot and even though it’s a tight track there’s still quite a lot of overtaking and always a bit going on.
It’s a hard race for drivers in the heat, and the tight, snaking layout means it’s tough, physically. What’s your favourite section?
The middle sector is one of the best of the whole year. It’s pretty fast, with really quick changes in direction. The track used to be pretty bumpy but it’s improved a lot recently.
Are you a fan of Budapest itself?
I’ve always liked the circuit but the city is also really cool. Budapest is amazing; it’s very pretty, there’s really good food and I always enjoy spending time in the city centre. Because it’s just before the summer break there’s also always a good feeling in the paddock before everyone takes a well-earned holiday.
After some power tracks, the Hungaroring is a lot slower in terms of average speed and the winding nature of it makes it one of those circuits where the driver makes a real difference. How do you feel about it?
It’s very difficult to master. It begins with very hard braking into Turn 1 before an off camber Turn 2, which tries to push you off from the inside. It is important to be precise in order to be on the right line for the next corner. Turn 4 is almost blind so you need to be cautious and build up throughout the weekend.
Daniel mentioned Sector 2 as being his favourite part of the track. Would you agree?
Sector 2 is pretty narrow and twisty so you need to take extra care there. Turn 11, the fast right-hander is probably my favourite corner on the track, when you get it right it is a nice feeling. A good exit from the final corner is important as the straight is long so carrying speed is vital.
Will you get a chance to go out in Budapest?
It’s a cool city, it has a reputation as a bit of a ‘party town’, but I have not had the chance to experience that yet! Walking on the banks of the Danube is nice and gives a chance to see both parts of the city, Buda and Pest. I’ll always try to fit in a good helping of Goulash while I’m in Hungary as I really enjoy this dish, usually on Sunday evening.