• Italian Grand Prix

Senna rejoices after scoring first points

ESPNF1 Staff
September 11, 2011 « Di Resta thanks 'aggressive' strategy | »
Bruno Senna narrowly avoided damage in the first corner but did lose positions © Sutton Images
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Bruno Senna believes he proved himself as an F1 driver after coming back from a difficult first lap at the Italian Grand Prix to score the first points of his career.

Senna started the race tenth and finished ninth, but a first corner pile-up and an early pit stop meant he raced into the points from 15th after the safety car period.

He started the race on the medium tyres but once he had lost positions in the first corner melee his team called him in for a set of soft tyres and he made three stops in total. Towards the end of the race he had a tyre advantage over Paul di Resta in eighth but couldn't quite close the gap before the chequered flag.

"I'm happy to score my first F1 points today, especially as it was only my second race for the team," Senna said. "Although I started 10th, it was not been an easy job to finish ninth. We suffered some bad luck in the first corner; everybody was cutting the chicane which forced me to drive on the outside, and in the process I lost all the places I had fought so hard for in qualifying. It makes me very happy to know that I am able to put myself in the position of scoring points, and also to fight with the guys who have been doing this for a long time.

"The pace of the car was clear for all to see, but I wish the race was just one lap longer because I may have been able to pass Paul (Di Resta) for eighth. The team chose a great strategy, the tyre was fast enough where I needed it to be and I am very happy to get my name on the points board. The team did a great job and I am really looking forward to Singapore."

His team-mate Vitaly Petrov was one of the casualties of the first corner crash and was sideswiped by an out-of-control Tonio Liuzzi. He had qualified seventh and said there were plenty of positives the team could take into the final six races.

"Naturally I am very disappointed with what happened today. I had a reasonable start and, as I was heading into the first chicane, Vitantonio's HRT came from nowhere and hit me big time, which brought my race to an end. There's nothing I could have done to avoid this. First of all, I'm happy not to be injured, as the impact was quite strong and it could have been a nasty accident. We have put in so much effort since Spa, at the track, Enstone and Viry, so I'm sorry that wasn't translated into points today.

"This is part of racing, but I can't help thinking that we could have secured a good result. We must now concentrate on Singapore, which will be a real test for us. We will be bringing another technical upgrade with us, before going on to quicker tracks like Japan and Korea, which should suit our car better. On the upside, the car has felt good since the first practice session here; we definitely made a step forward performance-wise and we should have a strong end to the season."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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