• Hungarian Grand Prix

Buemi rates drive through the field as one of his best

ESPNF1 Staff
July 31, 2011 « Damage played on Massa's mind | »
Sebastien Buemi drove from 23rd to eighth © Sutton Images

Toro Rosso driver Sebastien Buemi rates his drive from 23rd on the grid to eighth at the chequered flag as one of his best.

After getting knocked out of qualifying in Q1 on Saturday and serving a five-place grid penalty for a an accident with Nick Heidfeld at the previous round, Buemi's chances of points looked slim starting from 23rd. However, he was 14th by the end of the first lap and ninth by the time he made his first pit stop. He then made up positions by staying out on slicks during a brief shower towards the end of the race when other cars stopped for intermediates.

"A fantastic race, one of my best," he said. "Starting right from the back row I got a super start and I passed around ten cars on the opening lap. After that, I got into a good rhythm and was able to pass more cars on the damp track. Then, as it began to dry, I felt the set-up was not perfect and I had too much understeer. I tried not to get upset about it and then the team did a very good job, working at the pit stop to change the wing angle which helped me to save the tyres better and the stop was quick enough for me to jump up a few places. When the rain returned, I again felt the car was working very well and I was able to run at a good pace again, which helped me get into the points."

The result puts him two points clear of team-mate Jaime Alguersuari in the drivers' championship.

"It's nice to go on holiday now with another 4 points in the bag, especially starting with that five place grid penalty," he added. "There were plenty of exciting moments, especially my passing move on Kobayashi. I was too slow to catch up with him on the straight so I had to pass him under braking which was right on the limit. It's great to have this result, which owes something to such a good strategy."

Alguersuari reckons there was a chance he could have finished ahead of Buemi but said his final stop unfortunately coincided with a brief shower.

"Congratulations to the team for getting both cars into the points," he said. "Today, it was clear in my mind that I could have finished seventh. I made one of my pit stops just as it began raining slightly again. With the tyres not yet up to temperature, at that point it was hard to stay on the track and I went off. But I carried on fighting and towards the end, it was unfortunate that I lost another place after the collision with Kobayashi, but as a team performance we can consider we did a good job today, so it is a nice way to go into the short break, although I can't wait to start again in Spa."