Interview with Williams’ Mark Gillan
30 May 2012 – Following on from their win in Barcelona and despite the huge garage fire after the race, Williams were tipped for more strong results when F1 reached Monte Carlo. Chief Operations Engineer Mark Gillan sheds lights on why the team ended up leaving the Principality with just a single point more than they had arrived with.
Mark, it was a frustrating weekend for Williams in Monaco. So much potential, yet the team only got one World Championship point. How competitive was the FW34 around the Principality's streets?
The car was good enough for a P4 or P5 qualifying position and our race pace was also good, so it is disappointing not to have come away from this event with a decent haul of points.
This was the first race of the year for Pirelli's Super Soft compound. Did it perform as you expected?
Yes, the tyre performed pretty well (as expected) in terms of both pace and durability.
Were you surprised that so many people opted for a one-stop strategy?
No, not really, as the tyres were capable of a one-stop and it was likely to have been the default strategy for the majority of the field.
Pastor (Maldonado)’s weekend was compromised by a ten-place grid penalty following a collision with Sérgio Perez in FP3. What was your opinion of the incident and the penalty?
I think that the incident was avoidable and disappointing and that the penalty was therefore understandable.
Bruno (Senna) was more competitive in race trim than in qualifying; why was that and what does he need to do to qualify higher?
Bruno was very honest after qualifying, admitting that he could have done better, and he pushed hard through the race but was ultimately frustrated by Kimi (Räikkönen) who held him up. We will continue to work hard with Bruno in the simulator and on the track to help him maximise the new tyres' performance.
The Canadian Grand Prix comes next. What are the technical challenges and what can we expect from the FW34 there?
The team are looking forward to Montreal as we believe that we should be strong again, but we need to deliver in both qualifying and the race. It is usually an eventful race, with multiple stops, high brake wear and with the chance of a Safety Car being very likely.
Interview provided by the Williams F1 press office