Hi everyone. Season in RIOL is over, everyone starting be ready for FIFA in Russia, it’s time to relax and forget about races. I decide start seria of interviews with interesting drivers. Firstable – I planned ask smash to do interview, but he’s busy to fight in AOR F2, so i decide to talk with one of veterans who watch Formula 1, very long time. It’s time to talk with guy who debut in RIOL, and become new superstar here. It’s Mark from Italy.
Mark: Hi, everyone and thank you for hosting me this season, a special thank to Nik and Orion. It was an exciting season full of surprises, as you know it is my first ever, very fair and fast drivers and great battle almost every GP with Vettel in which I had a lot of fun, thanks Vettel, very fast and clean pilot, that was a great battle for the 2nd place until the last in Malaysia.
Do u have some special or particular question about season Nik?
– Actually, no. Because you had a great season. But I cannot decline that seria A in crisis.
Mark: I hope to be there next season and I hope you can handle everything as well as you did until now, great and hard work for u. I expect an F1 2018 with less bugs and more realism, i like if games are more difficult. I have to congratulate with Smash for how he won the title, very very fast driver, too quick for all of us, great drive, good luck for his season in AOR.
What do u expect from next season Nik? Do u think in some new rules? I really hope in a fun season like this and with more fast drivers, I like if races are more hard to stay in front
– Well actually I think about new rules, but I’ll announce later.
I planned to talk only about you, because for these months you become for me as friend. I have questions not about championship because you interesting person. I remember how we talk in last interview about your brother which, he now work in mclaren. And I decide to quest some questions about you, you was born in trieste. Say man it’s a beautiful town there?
Mark: It is a beautiful city and I suggest you come here one day, a multi-ethnic city like all the border towns, we have sea and hills and good italian food 😉 I have a good news, 2 weeks ago I became an uncle from my brother , a little girl 🙂
– hahaha, congrantilions mate.
Mark: I do not heard so much my brother, is very busy between London and Paris and is very under pressure at work now and the new arrival in family…… Where are you from Nik? And how old are you? You know I’m one of the oldest here. hehe
– Well I’m 22 year old guy (6 june i had birthday), and i live in Nizhny Novgorod in Russia. But this city wheather maybe is good, but if someone needs live in russia, i want say it’s hard life there. But mark, can I end this answer and question, because very much I need write….
Mark: happy birtday 🙂
– Mark, I remember that you told – That you watch F1 from 1979 (probably) when Gilles Villenueve drove in Ferrari, do you know who was his first teammate?
Mark: Probably scheckter in the 1979 and worl champion maybe that year
– Right. It’s true
Mark: The last champion before schumacher maybe too in ferrari.
– Is right too. And if you watch F1 since Kimi Raikkonen come in our world, i have question to you F1 fan. How did Formula 1 change for you while you were watching it? For better or for worse? Can you tell me more about it?
Mark: My desire is that the F1 come back to being like in the 80s with the security of now, the big problem of our F1 is the big difficult to follow close other cars, aerodynamics it affects too much, and maybe not have any obligation of tyre compounds or just 1 tyre compound on every race, let us see the real drivers performance and not just a car that seems runs almost alone or for “all”, yeah we have now great drivers like Hamilton, Alonso, Vettel but…..What we want and need to see on GP during season? Great battles and overtakes, impossible overtakes like 20, 30, 40 years ago, today those overtakes are very rare or impossible.
Maybe more drivers like Verstappen it could help for absurd, but do u remember guys battles with Villeneuve, Senna , Prost Mansell etc etc?
– I do, I saw old races
Mark: I want just to see who is the best driver, sure with the best car, but please let me see the real drivers on track. Now drivers are like engineers in cockpit….we need more human drivers
– So for you F1 going in worst way?
Mark: Not for safety but for it is not spectacular for who watching, Did you ever fall asleep during a GP?
– Well few races – yes. I even change channel because race boring
Mark: Yeah , exactly what I thought. I don’t know who like this F1, I just think must change…..I don’t know how but must change
– A fair opinion.
Mark: Who is your favorite driver?
– I force only for Bottas, Raikkonen, RIccardo, Leclerc (now) and Sirotkin
Mark: And of all time?
– Yes, expect Bottas in 2013, when Bottas debut I though he’s like Ericsson, nothing more, but with good motor, he improve that he deserve be in F1, Leclerc i saw he’s winning road in F2, and i force him because is my memorial to jules, Kimi – from my first race together with Schumacher. Riccardo – from 2014. Well mark I have another question. Did you force only for ferrari, or another teams\ or guys too?
Mark: in this season Ricciardo and Leclerc too, I’m expecting in the future Sainz too with a good car.
– From all your experience you force for who, did you remember?
Mark: in the past u mean?
Mark: When I was young , I remember Alboreto maybe in the 1985 close to win the title but he was italian other driver maybe Massa, very unlucky driver, and he gave all in ferrari
– I don’t know maybe you force for Minardi?
Mark: No, always in love with Ferrari
– For another teams, you never force?
Mark: Drivers yes but no teams
– Ok how about Jean Alesi, he gave very much to ferrari, too
Mark: yes I remember but they were not good years at Ferrari because of the performance, maybe just one victory in ferrari for him
– Okay, next question, mark. I know all the Italians are crazy about Ferrari, though there are those who support Mercedes, McLaren, Toro Rosso, Haas, Sauber, or other teams. How do you feel about these people, for you they are not enemies, by chance?)))) I talk about only italians guys.
Mark: I honestly do not know many italian fans of other teams but sure is and it has never been a problem, i respect everyone. One my friend is maybe one of the biggest fan of Michael Schumacher and he was never a ferrari fan.
– There is another question, I understand that many are rooting for Ferrari, but there were moments when Ferrari frankly disappointed and made mistakes, not only mechanics but also pilots. Have you ever criticized the pilots you were rooting for?
Mark: Sure like every supporter, the criticisms if constructive must help to grow and improve
– Can you tell me who and when you criticized?
Mark: Now I remember Schumacher at Spa (1998) with Coulthard or Jerez with Villeneuve (1997) or past year start in Singapore, just 2-3 examples.
– And that’s it?
Mark: No there are more examples but I don’t remember all bad moments now, I try to remember just the best moment 😉
– Well, I would like talk about Jerez 1997, when son Gilles Villenueve – Jacques won F1 title and do what his father not did.
Mark: Yes I remember that season
– Two questions: The first-reaction when Michael did it and the Second: You do not frustrated that the son of Gilles Villeneuve, and did not drive a Ferrari?
Mark: Well, honestly I was not too surprised by Michael , for what he did but the criticism was heavy from all over the world.
– Schumacher do like in 1994, with Damon Hill.
Mark: Yes Schumacher does a similar crash with Hill in Australia but there he was “lucky”. And won the title.
Jacques in Ferrari? A dream maybe for we supporters but that was the Schumacher era, together was impossible. One of my dream like supporter of Ferrari? I want to see Hamilton in red.
– (laugh), but as lewis said it’s impossible
Mark: I know and he is right but the best dream would be hamilton with vettel. Two car fighting all race
– Ok mark, talk about ferrari drivers, I just can’t ask you another question about that. What was the worst signing in Ferrari for you in the last 8 years, who wouldn’t you want in Ferrari?
Mark: Hard to say now after Schumacher era, maybe Marchionne, Montezemolo was a gentleman leader and supporter. New rules in F1 did not help Ferrari too after 2008 maybe
– But I talk about drivers, not gys like domenicalli, marchionne or something like that…
Mark: Well , do u know my brother worked in Ferrari from 2006 to 2015, what did he tell me? Nobody like Schumacher, Alonso is a great driver others are good sparring partners (Raikkonen never smiles haha)
– Your brother like alonso?
Mark: Yes, And now they work again “together”.
– Ok so from you – no worst driver signing for ferrari you remember?
Mark: Bah, maybe Stefan Johansson
– Only drive which you not like?
Mark: Sure Raikkonen, overvalued
– Wow…. I’m Shocked. Why Raikkonen?
Mark: I don’t say he is slow, I just don’t like his approach on races, always too slow and far from Vettel, how can win constructor championship Ferrari? It cannot always be bad luck
– But kimi was a champion in 2007
Mark: With a super great car and his first year in Ferrari. One of my brother favorite car that Ferrari 2007. But Kimi now, is not same guy like in 2007 – 2009 era.
– Alright, I think we end this question. And going back to Jacques Villeneuve. Did you think that Alonso going in same way like Jacques?
Mark: Do u are talking about Indy cars and Le Mans? Yes. He has already win in Le Mans next step is the Indy500…
– No man, I mean that Jacques Villeneuve and Alonso ruined own careers in F1
Mark: Why do u say so? They were perhaps forced choices
– But Villeneuve has drove in BAR in 1999 – 2003, and nothing got, only 2 podiums. Then Renault, and Sauber where he lose teammates. Alonso – after his quitting from ferrari his career in bad way….
Mark: I don’t know about Jacques but Alonso after Ferrari had no space in the top teams, McLaren and Honda was a good challenge, even full of memories, but we know how it went.
– Well Villeneuve told that in 1998, he have offer from Mclaren but he decline. He told that
Mark: Thinking about it now was definitely a wrong choice that excluded him from the top teams, like Alonso probably. Where do u think have a chance to drive in the future Alonso? a top team? Not in F1 now
– Personally, I think he’s quit from F1 soon. To WEC in Toyota or IndyCar.
– Next question, in few moments i remember in monza, tiffozi force not only ferrari drivers, was few precedents in Monza. Do you remember 1988?
Mark: Sincerely i dont remember , maybe drivers was Alboreto and Berger? And maybe in the same year was dead the Drake? i m not sure
– Who is drake?
Mark: Enzo Ferrari the Drake
– Yes, I talk about first italian GP after death Enzo Ferrari
Mark: Probably in that year was a McLaren domination with Senna and a victory by Ferrari in Monza is always special but more special after the death of Ferrari.
– Correct, and was Miracle 1988 there’s Jean-Louis Schlesser help win Ferrari, with senna’s collison
Mark: Maybe now I remember a collision at the end of the race, in a chicane? That was a miracle in Ferrari.
– I heard also after that Schlesser was a hero in Italy. After 30 years after that tiffozi remembers him?
Mark: I do not remember this but if so i can only “thank” him again from all the fans. haha
– Ok, next question. Which seasons for you was the best do you remember?
Mark: Hard to say, 1985 when Alboreto fought for the title, i remember great seasons with Senna and Prost in McLaren, Prost and Mansell in Ferrari, there are many but maybe the one to which I am most loving of is that of 2000. It was a long time for us tifosi were waiting for a world champion driver and that season I lived it with real passion also because I was watching the races of Monza and Imola.
– How you feel about prost-senna battle?
Mark: Two of the greatest drivers that can remember,I miss so many drivers like them and cars like those and those fantastic wheel-to-wheel duels even beyond the limit allowed. I really miss that F1
– And + Senna was half – italian
Mark: yes italian origins but i dont remember from where exactly
– Neida Da silva was italian, it’s his mother
Mark: From his mother surname – yes
– Well, if we talk about senna. I have a hard question, i don’t know how you react. But as you know F1 even in 80’s was not much saftety sport like we see now. What was worst thing that you saw in F1?
Mark: What a question Nik….hard to say….well, the safety of that era would have to make some drivers think more, I do not find a moment when I can say that the pilot has done a huge crap. Drivers say that once the visor is pulled down only thinks of staying in front how when we play ( i know we are just in a game and have no risk ), stupid things I have seen many but I have seen great drivers and no calculators or robots like today ( these cars don’t helps )
– Do you saw moments when dies a popular drivers in f1? And you miss imola 1994?
Mark: Fortunately not live but only on TV. Impossible to forget that tragic weekend, I remember I was working those days and I had a small black and white TV.
– You don’t have comments about this?
Mark: Only I can say – ” I miss Senna and Ratzenberger, R.I.P.”
– And sadly to say – Jules bianchi, too… Hard to believe that he was in 20 anniversary of tragic events in imola, and 5 months later bianchi going in fatal crash…That was avoidable, don’t you think?
Mark: And many others Nik, but who makes this sport knows the risks to which it goes against. Fortunately it has been done a lot and you will still have to do it for safety but you can not foresee everything. Do you remember the Massa incident in Hungary, how do you foresee it?
– Yes I do, but thankfully massa still alive.
Mark: yes… I can only tell you that my brother had the honor of working with Jules.
– Jules’s death was and your personal tragedy?
Mark: In my life or in F1?
Mark: As a sportsman I tell you that all those who die while doing so create a void but family tragedies are another thing, I cannot compare them (relatives and friends)
-Well even after those tradigies, I have simple question. Why you stay after that in F1?
Mark: Simply because it is a sport that I love like football and many others but not for this they have stopped doing it and I to watch it.
– Well, I glad that you answers of this questions. And I want know how your family support this, I mean your wife supports this))?
Mark: i know my wife from 25 years and after long time she knows my passions, sometimes she became angry when i play many hours on pc hahaha
– How much years you married?
Mark: Honestly we are not married but is as if we were with 2 beautiful children
– Both daughters?
Mark: son and daughter, 14 and 10 yo
-Ok, next: Did you drove with all family in F1 GP, and tell me when was that?
Mark: No never happened , I need concentration when i drive in ur league 😉
– I talk about real GP, not about online race (laugh)))
Mark: No I was ever lucky to drive a real F1 nik and I always went with friends to see the GP, but 2 times I took him to Ferrari day at mugello
– Your son or your daughter like F1?
Mark: Absolutely no, i am the only in my family. But those 2 times at mugello with my brother was very interesting for them
– And if one of your children will change their opinion, and someone thinks that formula 1 is an interesting thing, you’ll be happy about this fact? Or if someone will take your place from the family in online races?
Mark: I will be happy to help them as in all the things in which they put passion. And maybe one day I will challenge them (laugh).
– I have another question. Your brother not curse Vitaly Petrov in 2010, when he not let Alonso become third time champion?
Mark: I do not remember I ever talked about how the races went to other riders but just how they worked at Maranello and how stressful it was
– And Vitaly Petrov, what do you remember?
Mark: Now i dont remember, track?….ahh you mean last race in Abu-Dhabi? (2010)
-Yes, I talk quest this, because he’s first ever russian he drove in F1
Mark: Ah ok… It was a bad strategy in ferrari, not a fault by Petrov, Alonso has stopped too early.
– Thank god, i remember how Alonso’s fans call Vitaly Petrov a huge strong language. And thankfully you not told about him this. Personally it was a chance for vitaly to prove himself, but sadly that he quit from f1 quickly….
Mark: No reason to do this, he is a driver like Alonso.
– Glad that you answer this question.
Well mark, the time of this interview, is going to end. How this of interview – I know was saddest questions in that part.. But do you like this? In generally interview was beatiful? I would like to know how it was…..
Mark: Dont worry Nik, interview was perfect, this is just some part of F1 history that we will never forget unfortunately….
Now you know me a little better and you know how I live the sport. My second interview in my life with Nik was long but fun and interesting 😉
Good job like always Nik, I hope to be part in RIOL next season and really hope u will be here.
– i’ll be don’t worry and I wait in any races. Like royal rumble race and summer tournament
Mark: I hope i really hope to be, how do u think will work royal rumble? Seria A and Seria B drivers?
– Yes, well mark. Let’s we end in here interview
Mark: Thanks Nik and see u soon with good news, bye bye, see you next time.
– Thanks for interview, Mark. See you later.