Maldonado reflects on his maiden victory in Spain
By Berthold Bouman
Pastor Maldonado scored his maiden Formula One victory during the Spanish Grand Prix, also giving Williams their first victory in eight years. A flawless drive by the 27-year old Venezuelan, and certainly not a lucky strike but a solid and convincing win from a man who has always been labeled as the ultimate pay-driver. “I don’t focus on these comments, I prefer to do my talking on the track and do the best job I can for the team,” Maldonado commented in a by Williams conducted interview.
Maldonado silenced his critics and beat the big teams and experienced drivers like Fernando Alonso, Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel. Also a flawless performance from his Williams team, who managed to get Maldonado ahead of Alonso again during the final pit stop at the Circuit de Catalunya.
Maldonado visited the factory in Grove, UK, and he was surprised by the warm welcome. “I arrived at the factory this morning and everybody I have met has been congratulating me and there seems to be a lot of optimism about what we can achieve this season. We had a gathering this morning with all of the people in the factory to celebrate our win and this allowed me to thank all of them for their hard work,” Maldonado said.
Maldonado also admitted the complete overhaul of the Williams technical department has led to his success, “We have a new technical team and they seem to be making a very positive impact already. I also have more experience now compared to last year and this is certainly helping me. I don’t think there is one single thing that has led us to improve this year, but a number of little changes that when put together have made us more competitive on track.”
During the first race of the season, the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne, Maldonado was also chasing Alonso, but he made a small mistake and crashed, losing fifth place in the process. “In Melbourne I was pushing very hard to get as many points as possible for the team and perhaps pushed a little too hard. After last year the team were desperate for a strong start to the season and I wanted as many points as possible,” he said.
And he added, “I learnt from that and the experience certainly made me a stronger driver in Barcelona. Fernando is a tough competitor with a lot of talent so it was a tough battle but this time I came out on top.”
And asked whether he can be successful again the next race, the Monaco Grand Prix, he answered, “We will certainly do our best. Our package is definitely getting better and although we don’t have the quickest car right now, we are improving very quickly. I have always liked Monaco and after Sunday I am certainly full of confidence.”