After the race in the “Temple of Speed” in Monza, MotorLAT had access to a virtual press conference with F1 Head of Trackside Engineering of Alfa Romeo Racing Xevi Pujolar. The result was a captivating talk on the team’s actual situation, the Italian Grand Prix and the arrival of Valtteri Bottas.
The last races have been tough on Alfa Romeo. It started with Kimi Raikkonen still unable to race after being tested positive to Coronavirus and Robert Kubica jumping in the car, while Antonio Giovinazzi had a crash in the beginning of the race.
It would have been frustrating to miss an opportunity to score some points by going out in the first lap of what could have been a pretty solid result.
“Yeah, we think so, – Pujolar said – it is such a waste to miss these opportunities but it is what it is. We usually have a solid day on Saturday and we need to consolidate on Sunday. Hopefully, this can happen on the next race.”
MotorLAT asked the engineer how much did the initial impact affect the race and what result could have arrived for the Italian driver if the race would have gone as planned.
“This is difficult to say. I think we could aim to get at least behind Carlos Sainz and Lance Stroll. But it doesn’t matter now. We didn’t have the pace we have been trying to get for the whole weekend but we will go on and improve.”
The pace in the beginning seemed to be good. Was there any damage to Giovinazzi’s car after the impact?
“Yeah, the impact with Carlos Sainz was on the front of the car,- Pujolar explained – this means that we lost the performance, in terms of pace, it’s just not the position.”
Robert Kubica is at his second consecutive weekend racing, so he was better prepared this time.
“Performing without having the time to prepare was not ideal for him. We could see that on the long run. We needed to qualify and have more running and he did a good job”, he stated.
At the beginning of the weekend, there was the official announcement of Valtteri Bottas joining Alfa Romeo next year. MotorLAT was curious to know how are they preparing for him and if Pujolar had the chance to meet him already.
“No, I did not yet. At the moment, I am fully purposed to finish this 2021 season.”
Now, it’s time to move on and eye the Russian Grand Prix. Alfa Romeo will be ready to show the good pace and solid positions they deserve.