How was your first Blancpain Endurance Series weekend at Monza in April?
“Good. My priority this season is the commitment I have to BMW in the Blancpain Endurance Series and in the Italian GT championship. So far, result wise, in Monza we were pretty unlucky because we had a big crash in the second stint. But for my stint I was pretty good and came from P42 to P25.I and the team were happy with the pace I showed and with 60 cars at Monza it is not easy to find a clear lap.
“Also it was not really our track, not best suited for the BMW. So, it was not an easy weekend and although the performance of the car was not bad and the performance of our drivers was not bad either. I think that in Silverstone it will be a bit better for the ROAL Motorsport BMW Z4, so it might be easier to make a better result. We can do that; we proved that last year in the 24 Hours of Spa even if we were also ultimately unlucky there.
What are your first impressions of the Blancpain Endurance Series? The standard? The opposition? The level?
“I think it is amazing. The first impression was that I saw many drivers and many teams, all of a very high standard. I was a bit shocked by the number of cars because racing with 60+ is really a challenge. It is a challenge to find a good lap; it is a challenge to stay away from trouble during races, so you are maximum concentration all the time.
“Even if it is an endurance race, I could see from the first lap, as I took the start, which was a great experience, it was like a sprint race really, everyone was fighting like hell. Having a result in the Blancpain Endurance Series can be a very important thing for both the drivers and the teams. “
You know the ROAL Motorsport team pretty well. Roberto Ravaglia and what he achieved in motorsport must be an inspiration to you? It must be very valuable to have him as a team manager and to listen to his experience?
“I can say that Roberto together with my father is the person who taught me the most about racing. He is a great teacher. He was the first person to treat me like a professional driver, because usually when there is a woman driving, people are less serious. Roberto was really respectful from the first moment, believing in me and my potential so it was a huge opportunity for me to race for him and I will never thank him enough for that. He was one of the greatest drivers in my view and I can say that having been in many teams that he is the best team manager that I have ever worked with.”
We’ve got 3 female drivers this year, Rahel Frey (WRT), Marlene Broggi (Boutsen-Ginion) and yourself. It is a good, strong sign for motor sport isn’t it?
“I have seen that in the last few years female drivers are coming up more and more, and there is also a bit more competition between us. In Blancpain yes we have one of the most competitive women, Rahel Frey, who was in DTM, so I really respect her. Marlene I don’t know her very well but she seems to be doing a good job. Still though there is a distinction between male and female drivers because we don’t see successful women drivers too often. So the only thing that we have to do is to try to get the best results possible and to be considered as the among top drivers. Once you get the results, you also get respect.”