It wasn’t a good Monaco debut for Lotus Racing, after Heikki Kovalainen succumbed to mechanical problems and Jarno Trulli missed the chequered flag with a few laps to go. The Italian was running last before he climbed over the top of Karun Chandhok’s car to put both men out of the race. The Indian driver described Jarno’s move as “something silly”. “He is not an idiot, I quite like him and he is a nice guy. I think when he apologises he know he has screwed up,” the HRT man said.
“This wasn’t a great weekend for me. After we had a problem with the wheelgun in the pitstop I was stuck behind the HRTs and trying to find room to overtake – in the last lap Karun seemed slow through the second and third sector, and I’d seen he was leaving room at Rascasse, so I tried to get through but we touched and that was that – the end of the race. It was one of those things – a racing incident, but I still feel like we’re going in the right direction as a team, and I want to put the bad luck behind me when we get back on track in Turkey,” Trulli lamented.
Mike Gascoyne sounded apologetic. “I think as a team we have to take a look at everything to be able to do a better job for him,” the technical director said.
Heikki on the other hand, was forced to retire due to an issue with the steering that made it unsafe to continue. “Just before I retired I could feel the steering alignment was a bit uneven – on the right hand corners I had to use maximum lock, even in the tunnel, and it got the point where it didn’t feel safe anymore. In Monaco you can’t take a risk with it so I came in,” he explained.
“This was our strongest performance yet compared to the midfield, so obviously mixed emotions for where we finished. Heikki had a very strong race and in the middle his performance was particularly good compared to the midfield group. It’s a shame we had a problem on his car – the steering joint failed, something we’ve not seen before – but overall it was a very positive weekend for him,” Gascoyne added.