Williams’ strong finish to the 2012 season continued with their second consecutive double points finish, and their fourth of the year. Pastor Maldonado and Bruno Senna were ninth and tenth respectively and Chief Operations Engineer Mark Gillan was impressed with the way they fought back after a tough first lap.
“Both drivers didn’t have the best of starts. Whilst Pastor managed to maintain position on the clean side of the grid he was eventually pushed wide by Massa at Turn 2, which meant that he picked up a lot of dirt on his option tyres which subsequently took a long time to clean up. Both drivers drove very good races but unfortunately we were not able to clear Hulkenberg. It’s good to have both cars in the points but ultimately we wanted more. We now concentrate all our efforts on the final race of the season.”
Maldonado scored in back-to-back races for the first time in his career and was particularly delighted to do so in front of the fans that had travelled from Venezuela.
“After today’s race I’m happy for the team, for the Venezuelan fans and for myself. I hope that this will be one of the best racing venues for Formula One. On the first lap I ran wide which meant I had to fight for places throughout but I enjoyed it because it was a good race and we were competitive. At the beginning I lost many places but I managed to recover quite well. On the last lap I was fighting with Hulkenberg but there wasn’t enough time to get the place. I am looking forward to the last round in Brazil and we are ready to fight again there.”
Senna was overtaken by his teammate late on but wasn’t prepared to risk such a good team result by fighting him.
“Unfortunately starting on the dirty side of the grid hurt my race in the early stages as it was quite messy into the first corner. We had good pace though and were overtaking when we needed to. Unfortunately we came out of the pits behind Hulkenberg which was frustrating as he was just quick enough exiting Turn 11 each lap and we couldn’t overtake him which damaged my tyres allowing Pastor to catch us both. I knew Pastor would make a move and I wasn’t going to close the door as we needed the points for the team. Overall, it was a pretty difficult race but it was good to end with both cars in the points which is what we are aiming for.”