We could have this race every weekend and it would be pretty awesome
Does the novelty of driving in Monaco ever wear off?
"It doesn't - definitely not. It's pretty incredible coming here every year and thinking there's only a few of us that get to drive around here. It's kinda neat that I live here so I get to see the place quite often - but the novelty never wears off. I run round the circuit, sometimes I drive my car or ride my motorbike round the circuit... and every time I'm like: "I can't believe that we're going to be driving at 200 mph around here. There's only 20 of us that get to do it the way we do it in Formula One, so it's cool. I'm excited, as I am every year. We could have this race every weekend and it would be pretty awesome."
Will it be a bigger challenge this year with the 2017 cars?
"It's difficult to say it's a greater challenge - it's a challenge every year. We've got harder tyres, for example, so there's getting the tyres to work. I won't know until I get in the car tomorrow. But when you arrive you have to expect the biggest challenge of your life because every year it is. The weather is up and down, there's tyre usage and setup... basically, anything can happen. You have to be on your toes and ready to react to whatever comes."
I'm grateful for the ones I've had
How would you define your relationship with this track?
"I've not won here many times. With the pace I've had over the years, it's always proven to be the most... not the Achilles heel... but the unicorn of races. That one that just always gets away from you. There's definitely been, I would say, at least two - maybe three - that I should have had but other things came into play. But I'm grateful for the ones I've had. Not many people can say they have a Monaco Grand Prix win under their belt. And especially the way those two wins came about in 2008 and 2016. Sometimes quantity isn't everything. Those were real quality races that I really earned, so I'm proud of those ones. But, of course, I want to have more..."