German Review - Gripless weekend
I've got again the same feeling I've had so many times after the Grand Prixweekend in Germany. The best thing in it is, that it's behind.
Obviously it was the most difficult weekend we have had so far. We had a toughFriday, even tougher Saturday and then, the toughest Sunday in the race.
While testing in Hockenheim the car was working reasonable well. I had afeeling it should be ok. But the race weekend made it feel like we aresomewhere else. It was impossible to find a good set-up. We tried and tried,but nothing worked.
You really need a good grip to get a good lap in Hockenheim. We missed the gripfrom the rear tyres and the car went all over the place.
It's true we have had problems to get the car going like I want it to go in some earlier races. But it has not been as difficult as it was in Hockenheim.When you miss the grip from the rear, you simply cannot go as fast as needed tofight for the top places. There where short periods it felt a little bit better,but it didn't feel as good as it usually does.
We have had some hard times in qualifying in earlier races, too, but usuallythe race speed has been there. This time it didn't happen. On Sunday theweather was warmer, but it didn't change anything. The car felt even moredifficult in the beginning of the race.
I've been able to get the rhytm and keep the lap times consistent, but thistime we were slow. We changed the strategy a little bit and in the first pitstop we took the option tyre instead of the harder one. Obviously it helpedsome and we managed to gain places. But then came the safety car and it didn'tdo any favor for us.
We had a long stop and lost some time and lost many places, while the frontwheel nut was stuck. In the final stint we managed to overtake some people andit was good to get at least some valuable points from this difficult weekend.
Now it's a different ball game for the championship, too. We are seven pointsbehind from the leader, as it was after the Canadien Grand Prix six weeks ago.We have to check and analyze everything we did before Hockenheim and find thereason why we where so slow.
Obviously something had gone wrong. Sometimes it's like this while you try toimprove the car.
I feel confident that we get the car right again. I pack my bags and test fortwo days in Jerez. We just have to take it easy and not worry too much. Ourseason looks different now, but nothing has been lost. We just have to bepatient. The motivation and the desire to win has not changed a single bit.
Last year we had six successive races without a win. Now it's six winless racesagain. Hopefully seven is my lucky number this time.