The traditional first press-conference of the weekend gathered the drivers from “the mid-field”. The main topic of conversation was a dramatic character of the races here in Baku.
The only one participant of today press-conference once could managed to come on the Azerbaijanian podium. Lance Stroll shared the memories of his first (and only so far) podium in Formula 1.
"A very memorable day – being on the podium was extremely special. Every year here there’s opportunity, the races are pretty chaotic, especially the last four or five laps. Last year, with the safety car restarts, there’s always positions up for grabs, so we’ll see what this year has to offer”.
Last two years in Baku Nico Hulkenberg had DNFs in the races. However, the driver says he enjoy the challenge of racing at this track a lot.
"It’s a special track, it’s super fast, it’s massively challenging, a little bit crazy as well, in a positive sense. Racing’s good with all the towing that’s going on, obviously into Turn One that’s your best shot, but the scenery, the setting, just makes for good racing. It’s pretty entertaining from inside the car as well here”.
Antonio Giovinazzi from Alfa Romeo spend his first Baku race as F1 driver. But he has a lot of experience here since in 2016 he had a double win in GP2 championship.
"It will be my first time in F1 but I have good memories here. Back in 2016 I took my first pole in GP2 and then double win for the races. So I’m looking forward to it; I know it’s difficult race, a lot of safety cars and a lot of things during the races, so looking forward to race here in F1”.
As for difficult Chinese Grand Prix and two races before, Antonio is sure that it’s only beginning, and together with the team they will be able to reach the better results.
"I think we are only in the beginning of the race, we are a team, and like the team is believe in me, I believe in the team. We need to just keep working and I’m sure the results will come”.
Kevin Magnussen which team also has serious problems during the beginning of the season, looks optimistic about Baku race, despite the track characteristics that mostly don’t fit Haas cars.
"Theoretically, it’s not a track that will in theory help our issues, or at least the issues we think we have. But again, we’ve scored points here with a slow car, and I don’t think we have a slow car this weekend. We have a fast car, it’s just that… You know, we’ve had both cars in Q3 at all three races this year and then we’ve been kind of like the second-slowest team in the race almost in all three races also, so there’s clearly an issue there that we need to fix. I hope and think that it will just be a matter of time until we find that problem”.