I got back home from Canada on Monday, which meant I was in plenty of time to watch Brazil’s first game in the World Cup against North Korea. To be honest, I expected something better, as their style of play was not that exciting and not very “Brazil.” Anyway, the important thing is that we won, which is what counts at the end. Probably the fact it was the first game meant the teams are very aware they need to make a good start and so do not play as well as they are able. We are up against two good teams next, Ivory Coast and Portugal so it will be important to do well in this first qualifying stage.
If I expected something better from the football, you could use the same words to describe how I felt about the Canadian Grand Prix. It was a bad weekend, especially when you consider I had a very good car for the race and was expecting to pick up a significant number of points. But then I was caught up in the accident at the first corner, sandwiched between Button and Liuzzi, which removed any chance of a clean race and a strong finish. I had a good start and was making up places on the way to the first corner, but then I had to pit for a new nose and that was it. Even after that setback, I was heading for the points in the closing stages: I was tenth, but Michael (Schumacher) who was ahead of me was much slower, maybe three seconds and Buemi in front of him was also slow, so I was in with a chance of finishing eighth. But then came the problem with Michael. He closed the door on me too much. He braked on the right and moved across to the left where I was. There was nothing I could do, as I was already on the limit of my braking and when he moved across even more, he broke my front wing.
On the positive side, the car was much more competitive in Canada than in Turkey, which is a good basis on which to go to Valencia for the next race. The street circuit there is not so different in terms of its characteristics to the Montreal track and on top of that, we expect to have some more updates for the F10 to make it even more competitive with those ahead of us in the championship. Valencia has not produced very exciting races so far, but I enjoy the track, as the only time I have raced there, in 2008 – it was one of the races I missed last year after my accident – I won. It would be nice to think we could be in with a chance of doing the same again this time.
Before going to Valencia, today I am in Maranello to prepare for the next race on the simulator. I enjoy this preparation, as it is very similar to doing a normal day of testing at a real circuit, as you drive from early in the morning until the end of the afternoon. We see how the car works, starting with a set-up mainly based on the previous year’s race and then we can change just about everything, as you would do in real life at the track. We even use it to test new components that have never been fitted on the car before and I am linked by radio to my race engineer, just as I would be in reality. Then I will return home to spend the weekend in Monaco, probably watching more of the World Cup, after which it will be time to head for Valencia and the chance to make up for the disappointment of Canada. With the unpredictable nature of this year’s championship anything can happen and I am sure we can be in the fight for the top places come Sunday in Spain.