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F1 | Portuguese GP | Latifi: “The car was driving me the whole race. I was surprised I kept Mick behind for so long”

Canadian driver Nicholas Latifi finished the Portuguese Gran Prix as 18th the same position he was starting from. Overall, the race was a “struggle” because as soon as the winds pick up, it becomes “very challenging” and “some analysis to try and find a solution” are needed.

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F1 | Portuguese GP | Latifi: “The car was driving me the whole race. I was surprised I kept Mick behind for so long”
Fuente imagen: twitter.com/@WilliamsRacing

The Canadian driver Nicholas Latifi was a bit disappointed during the post-race debrief, but the team was “expecting a difficult race” anyways.

“The race was tough from a team’s perspective. Whatever flaw the car has, we need to find it out.

“However, we don’t need to be too surprised with this performance”

“It started off as a very difficult weekend for me, already on Friday”, commented Latifi.

“It was difficult out there today. We always struggle with the opening laps and that was evident with George starting much higher up and then after the first few laps he was back where I was”.

As reported by his teammate George Russell, even Latifi confirmed how their car is extremely sensitive from an aerodynamic standpoint.

“We knew all weekend we would be struggling with the wind…We were expecting it, of course, we hoped it wouldn’t happen but yeah...it happened”.

The car felt very unstable but it will be interesting to see how it will evolve in a circuit the teams knows more like Barcelona’s.

We definitely need to assess what is going on. It feels very on edge and we need to do some analysis to try and find a solution.

“If you look at my times, I started off decently on Friday and then overnight I was 1,5 seconds off. And then we made a big change from FP1 to FP2, without however making real changes to the car…so, yeah, there is something wrong”

Clearly, there is something we are missing at the moment, and we need to try and improve it ahead of Barcelona.

“Maybe I unlearned how to drive overnight…but yeah, it was a difficult difficult weekend”, said Latifi ironically.

Towards the end of the race, we witnessed some action at the back of the grid with Haas’ driver Mick Schumacher overtaking Latifi and finishing P17.

The German driver commented on his move saying he has “tried to put pressure on Latifi” but the latter said: “well, actually, he overtook me because I made a mistake”.

Not because I was under too much pressure. To be honest I was even surprised I managed to keep him behind for fifty-something laps.

The car was driving me the whole race, so it was a miracle I only made that one mistake”, the driver added.

But what caused the drastic change in performance from Imola to Portimao? For Latifi, the “track layout definitely played a role” but mostly “it was the weather condition that hindered today's performance”.

Formula One has officially announced on Wednesday that the Canadian GP is cancelled for the 2021 season and confirmed it will be replaced on the calendar by the Turkish Grand Prix in Istanbul.

Nicholas Latifi hadn’t had the chance to race at his home circuit since joining Formula One as a rookie last year, because the GP got cancelled in 2020 as well.

Well yeah, I’m a bit disappointed for obvious reasons but I hope I will have the chance to race there in the future. I and the team haven’t talked about contracts yet…I haven’t been thinking about it, to be honest. I am just focused on the next race”.

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