Both Toro Rosso drivers are highlighting the importance of a good qualifying session at the Hungaroring this weekend.
Carlos Sainz started last year’s Hungarian Grand Prix from sixth position and finished in the points. However, Daniil Kvyat was handicapped by 12th place on the grid, and ended up a long way off the top ten.
“I’d say last year’s qualifying in Hungary was one of my highlights of the season,” said Sainz. “The track is one I like, especially in qualifying. It’s quite an intense lap!
“I remember being P15 in FP3 and suddenly, out of nowhere, putting one of the best laps of my life together in quali with the intermediate tyres.
“I ended up P4 in Q2 and making it into Q3 – something nobody was expecting!” he added. “I then went for it on slick tyres on a damp track and ended up P6! I enjoyed it a lot!
“The race itself, if it doesn’t rain, isn’t so special,” he admitted. “It’s quite difficult to overtake there; a bit like Monaco.”
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His team mate picked up on a similar theme.
“The track is a very interesting and challenging one,” said Kvyat. “It’s very narrow; I describe it like a ‘Monaco without walls’.
“It’s very difficult to overtake in Hungary, so it’s important to have a good qualifying,” he agreed. “You have to get everything right and hopefully we will have a clean race there.”
But while last year’s race might not have been a success for the young Russian driver, he has cause to remember his 2015 outing.
“In Hungary I scored the first ever podium of my F1 career,” he pointed out. “I have very cool memories from that race weekend and it’s always good to go back there.
Even if the lack of overtaking opportunities in Hungary is a frustration, both drivers are still big fans of the venue.
“Budapest is one of my favorite cities in the world,” stated Sainz. “It has many historic attractions, good restaurants.
“The fans are also incredible there: I have a picture on Instagram where you see all the fans around me and it’s difficult to find me in the photo!
“This makes it a special weekend and I feel very loved in Hungary. I have a lot of fans there, which is nice!”
“The fans are very passionate there,” agreed Kvyat. “It’s great to see. The signing sessions are always fully-packed with people cheering us on and this is something very special to see.
“It’s one of the highlights of the weekend, definitely!”
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