What did your teammate do before landing a GP2 drive?
Alvaro: I think he did World Series, but maybe not all of it. And Formula 3 in England for sure.
Karun: I did two weekends in World Series… Alvaro raced in F3 in 2003. I sat on the grid next to him. And he did World Series in 06 and then he won in 07. I should get more points because I know more… I totally kicked his arse on that one
Alvaro: No! I was only getting started…
What are his greatest strengths?
Alvaro: He is earlier on track, for sure (Laughs). And during the races, he is very consistent.
Karun: I think, Alvaro’s greatest strength is how he can just wake up and five minutes later be on the track and be super fast! Can you tell us the story of your pole position in 07 in Monaco?
Alvaro: (Laughs) I got confused with the schedule… I got in quite a bit late and everyone was already lined up and putting their helmets on. I had to change in the pitlane. My boots were in the pitlane, but some things were missing. It was a bit of a mess. But at the end, we did a great job so… (Laughs)
What are his weaknesses?
Karun: Probably, maybe in the races more than in qualifying, he is very quick on one lap… He is mega. Maybe he is not as quick during the races, maybe.
Alvaro: Well… This year, maybe in qualifying, Karun wasn’t as strong as last year in some places… But even though, most qualifying sessions, we managed to be in the top so…
Karun: Unless we have a problem, we are always between one or two tenths from the pace. We haven’t been the luckiest pair.
Who gets the latest to the track?
Alvaro: Well, excuse me, but in Valencia, I arrived before Karun…
Karun: I couldn’t believe it! He called me. It was the first time ever! I got to the track and saw him there already. I really thought that he’d slept there at night: it was impossible otherwise! I’m sure he didn’t change the time zone on his alarm.
Alvaro: I thought we were going to have more traffic on the way over, but no (Laughs)
Who is the wildest on track // off track?
Karun: I don’t know. It depends… If you look at the end of season party last year? It was probably me. If you look at the rest of the year, probably him.
Alvaro: He enjoys the occasional glass of wine more than me… That’s all I’m going to say on the subject (Laughs)
Karun: The last time I was in Portugal, we went out for dinner. Some of us went to bed after dinner. Some of us went to Portimao after dinner… and came back at five in the morning. I will not say who was who, but I will say this: I was in bed! (Laughs) On track, I would say we are even in terms of wilderness.
Alvaro: This year, for me, it’s been a bit crazy. I think I made only one big mistake and another small one in Monaco. But the rest has been people hitting me. I haven’t had a great year so far. We should be more in front. Anyway, that doesn’t change anything… The year has been difficult and we lost a lot of points through no fault of our own.
Karun: People crash into you and I have mechanical gremlins… We should have had three more points, that’s for sure. And there were stupid incidents as well. But, there you go. We are definitely the unluckiest pair of the grid.
Alvaro: We should be a lot more in front.
Who is the most successful with the ladies?
Alvaro: I have no idea…
Karun: You are a smooth talker.
Alvaro: Oh and you are not? (Laughs) I’m a low profile person. I’ve heard some stories regarding Karun… But I will not tell!
Who will have the nicest car in ten years?
Karun: I don’t know… I want the world’s fastest Fiat 500. That’s what I want. When I make money, that’s the first thing I’m going to buy. The world’s fastest Fiat 500… It will be mega. I could drive from Brackley to Spa in less than five hours.
Alvaro: And you will also have a lot of tickets.
Alvaro: For me, right now, if I could buy a car, I would buy a sporty diesel – something like a BMW. I really like them. That’s what I would do right now. I had a non-diesel car. I loved it, but I was constantly at the petrol station, filling it up.
Karun: I’m driving a diesel Volvo at the moment for the same reason! 450 miles with one tank. Happy day!
Who will have the most beautiful wife in ten years?
Karun: We should let Alvaro’s girlfriend answer that one (Laughs)
Alvaro: I was going to say that (Laughs)!
Karun: I don’t even know if I’m going to be alive in ten years…!
How best would you describe your teammate?
Karun: Chilled out! I have never met a racing driver that chilled out in my life…
Alvaro: Hard worker. True professional. That’s the best way to describe Karun. And very popular with everyone. He is always happy and talking to everyone. He is very nice. I’m not (Laughs)
Who has the best fashion sense?
Karun: We are always wearing team shirt and shoes! I think your question should be “Who has the best fashion sense: Alexa or Dave?”
Alvaro: Yeah! (Laughs)
Karun: Outside the track, it’s tee-shirt, shorts and flip-flops for me.
Alvaro: Same here…
Who is the shyest?
Karun: It’s not me! (Laughs)
Alvaro: You think I’m shy?
Karun: Compared to me…
Alvaro: Oh then yes. Compared to you, anybody is shy!
Who is your favourite sportsman? Sportswoman?
Karun: Lance Armstrong and Alain Prost. As a kid I was a Prost fan which became a bit of an issue last year when I had the conversation with Bruno (Laughs)
Alvaro: I really like to watch Cristiano Ronaldo play. And in motor racing, I don’t have a big idol, but I always loved watching Senna race, and Patrese too. Federer in tennis is also very impressive. He is not as fit as Nadal, but he uses the power differently
Karun: True. To stay at the top year after year… He is a real hero.
Who tells the most jokes?
Alvaro: No, no. It’s Karun.
Karun: Alvaro is quite funny, really. Yesterday, I was changing my visor. I got the dark visor and he comes up to me and says: “It’s raining again”. So, I spend another ten minutes getting the rain visor ready. And of course, it was bright and sunny outside.
Alvaro: Sorry… (Laughs) But Karun has an English humour. It’s quite entertaining.
Karun, if you were to invite Alvaro to dinner, what would you cook? Same for Alvaro?
Karun: Portuguese are not very good with curry.
Alvaro: Yes, please, no curry. Nothing spicy…
Karun: My chicken curry is very good. I cook all the time. I make fajitas too.
Alvaro: Oh! Fajitas!
Karun: Ok, I will make you fajitas… To be honest, it’s not difficult to cook curry. I make everything from scratch. I love cooking curries. My dad always brings me some spices to England every time I run out.
Alvaro: I’ll pretend to cook Karun a meal, but actually I would have gotten it from somewhere! Some codfish… I’ll order a good Portuguese meal (Laughs)
Who has the most contacts in their phone?
Karun: Should we check?
(Both run to their phones and check)
Alvaro: Where can you see that?
Karun: I’ve got 1558.
Alvaro: Jesus! One thousand how many?
Alvaro: Ok, well then, there is no need to check mine!
(Karun helps Alvaro find the number in the Portuguese’s phone)
Alvaro: I lose… Big time!