Spanish Grand Prix Formula One qualifying report
Today’s report from Formula One teams & drivers at Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona.
Formula One teams Spanish Grand Prix qualifying results
|10||Di Resta||Force India||1:22.233||1.515|
|19||Van der Garde||Caterham||1:24.661|
Red Bull Racing
SPANISH GP – QUALIFYING
Car 1 SEBASTIAN VETTEL, Position: 3rd, (3rd Practice – P5, 1:22.229)
“I was pretty happy with the last sector, as historically it’s been a bit weak for me. Now finally, after the last couple of years, I understand the last few corners a little better. I’m quite happy as yesterday and this morning I wasn’t too comfortable, particularly in the last sector, but we improved the car. We had a pretty smooth qualifying session, we took a slightly different approach to some others using option tyres only – whether that helps us tomorrow we‘ll have to wait and see, but it will be an interesting race and a lot will be about tyre degradation. It’s good to start a little bit higher up, so let’s see what we can do tomorrow.”
Car 2 MARK WEBBER, Position: 8th, (3rd Practice – P3, 1:22.044)
“Qualifying went well today apart from Q3. I was disappointed with the lap in Q3 and lost a lot of time in the last sector; I’m normally quite strong there, but I was in trouble with the rears. It’s a sensitive game these days and you need to get everything lined up. So, in the end I’m disappointed with the last lap, but everything else I was happy with. It will be an interesting race tomorrow.”
CHRISTIAN HORNER: “A very interesting qualifying. Sebastian put in a phenomenal lap at the end of Q3 to line up third on the grid, which was beyond what we expected after Q1 and Q2. With the two Mercedes ahead of us and Kimi and Fernando behind it makes a fascinating grid for tomorrow’s race. For Mark, having looked competitive in Q1 and Q2, unfortunately his lap in Q3 was just that little bit off and, on such a close grid, the differences are marginal. Hopefully both drivers can have very strong races from their grid positions tomorrow.”
(Renault) THIERRY SALVI: “Although we know Barcelona well from winter testing, there are several challenges to setting the engine up here and a number of things we need to stay on top of. There are a variety of corner speeds and some heavy braking zones, and the third sector is a big challenge drivability wise. We’ve worked to make the engine as smooth and driveable as possible to counter these issues and generally everything is working well. Based on tyre wear and grid position we seem to be in good shape for tomorrow’s race, which is again likely to be very exciting.”
JOB SWAP: SEBASTIAN AND ROCKY
Sebastian becomes the race engineer and Rocky becomes the driver, as Sebastian Vettel and his engineer Rocky swap places. Rocky takes to the Barcelona circuit in the Red Bull simulator – guided by Sebastian. Can Rocky beat last year’s qualifying time? Watch this to find out…. www.youtube.com/redbullracing
We asked @redbullracing followers who they would like to swap jobs with. Some of the most popular answers were: Felix Baumgartner, Adrian Newey, Travis Pastrana, The Queen, Christian Horner, Sebastian Vettel, Mark Webber, Richard Branson, Ozzy Osbourne…
Spanish Grand Prix – A result matching expectations
ALONSO – Chassis 299 MASSA – Chassis 300
Q1 P5 1:22.264 New Hard – 3 laps P7 1:22.492 New Hard – 3 laps
Q2 P3 1:21.646 New Medium – 3 laps P8 1:21.978 New Medium – 3 laps
Q3 P5 1:21.218
New Medium – 3 laps
New Medium – 3 laps
New Medium – 3 laps
New Medium – 3 laps
Weather: air 22°C, track 35/38 °C. Sunny
Stefano Domenicali: “First of all, I want to wish the best of luck to Pat Fry, our Technical Director who will be undergoing an appendectomy this afternoon and we wish him all the best for a rapid recovery. As for qualifying, we knew we couldn’t be in the hunt for the very front: we definitely cannot be satisfied with the result, but the third row is still a good starting point on which to build in tomorrow’s race. It was not a surprise to see the two Mercedes being so quick, as it was also the case in winter testing at this track. Looking ahead to Sunday, we are reasonably sure we can count on the potential we have seen so far and as usual, the start will be very important to try and make up a few places. Tyre degradation will still be a key factor and so we must stay focused and make the most of any opportunity.”
Fernando Alonso: “It’s a well known fact that Saturday afternoon is our weak point and fifth place is more or less what we were expecting. We were well aware that Red Bull and Mercedes would both be very strong, but while it’s true we have to start taking back points on Vettel, we are not too scared of Mercedes, who usually have higher tyre degradation. The team and I are optimistic for tomorrow as our race pace is good and usually we manage to go better on Sunday. We start from the clean side and hope that will allow us to get off the line well, because what we need here is to make up some places at the start and then put in a few clean laps in the early stages or at half distance. We will also have to defend against Raikkonen: so far he has gone very well in the races and the Lotus doesn’t seem to suffer too much on the tyre front. As usual this season it will be very important to choose the right strategy, because there is only one lap difference in terms of degradation between the two tyre compounds”.
Felipe Massa: “I can’t say I’m pleased with this result, because I was expecting more after the times I did this morning. Unfortunately, in the third sector I had slight understeer which was costing me time, but all the same, I feel very confident because our car seems competitive. Now we must concentrate on tomorrow’s race, because it will be a long one and anything can happen. As for the Stewards’ decision relating to what happened with Webber in Q2, it was not my intention to get in his way and in all honesty, I can’t recall having affected his qualifying. When I saw him in the mirrors, I thought I’d get through the corner before letting him by, which was the only course of action at such a narrow point. On top of that, he was on worn tyres at the time and I don’t think he was doing a quick lap. I’m not surprised at the pace of the Mercedes, as they were already strong here in winter testing and their car is always very competitive in qualifying. This result shows once again that, on Saturdays, our rivals prefer to take a more conservative approach in the morning before revealing their true potential in the afternoon”.
Vodafone McLaren Mercedes
2013 SPANISH GRAND PRIX – QUALIFYING
Circuit de Catalunya, Saturday May 11
“We’ll be looking to maximise our potential tomorrow”
- 14th 1m23.371s (+1.470s) 21 laps
- Q1 14th 1m23.116s (on Options)
- Q2 7th 1m21.790s (on Options)
- Q3 9th overall 1m22.069s (on Options)
“We’ve had a difficult couple of days – I had problems throughout practice – so to get through to Q3 was a great result, and something we really weren’t expecting. I’m very pleased because I got absolutely everything out of the car.
“So we’ll go into the race tomorrow looking to maximise our potential. If we can manage that, I think we should be satisfied.
“The whole Vodafone McLaren Mercedes team is determined to keep on fighting. I’ve seen how hard the guys in the garage, and everybody back at MTC, are working to get us back to the front – so today’s result just makes me even more hungry to justify all their efforts.”
- 12th 1m23.151s (+1.250s) 13 laps
- Q1 15th 1m23.166s (on Options)
- Q2 14th overall 1m22.355s (on Options)
- Q3 -
Congratulations to Checo – he did a great job, particularly in Q2. He did everything right this afternoon and showed that some of our recent upgrades are definitely working. It’s not yet enough, but it’s rewarding to see that we’re making some progress.
“For me, the car felt okay in Q1, but, in Q2, I couldn’t find the grip for my final run. It felt as though the tyre pressures may have been too high, but to be honest we’re not yet quite sure exactly what happened.
“So, tomorrow, from 14th on the grid, whatever we do will be difficult. It’ll be a tricky afternoon, but we’ll definitely do our best to make the best of it.
MARTIN WHITMARSH Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes
“Checo did a fantastic job in qualifying today – especially in Q2 during which he drove a sensational lap to be seventh-quickest.
“In Q3 we considered taking the tactical option, in other words not running him at all in order to conserve an extra set of tyres. But, in the end, on the basis that he was driving so well, we decided to go for it in the hope that he might repeat his Q2 form relative to his principal opposition.
“As things panned out, he lost a little time in sector three on his best Q3 lap and ended up in P9. But, anyway, I want to say ‘Well done Checo’, because he was extremely impressive here this afternoon.
“Jenson had a difficult qualifying – and, although we haven’t yet had a chance to examine his data thoroughly, it would appear that perhaps his tyre pressures may have been set a little too high. But, whatever the problem turns out to have been, I’m certain that, had he felt comfortable in his car, he’d have been able to go through to Q3 as Checo did.
“Having said that, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes’ ambitions extend to a great deal more than merely going through to Q3, and it’s clear that our MP4-28 still requires a lot of development before it becomes as competitive as we need it to be. But we’re gradually understanding more about its shortcomings, and I’m sure we’ll get there in the end.
“In the meantime, both Checo and Jenson will give 100 per cent tomorrow in their efforts to score as many world championship points as possible for themselves, for the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes team, and last but not least for Vodafone McLaren Mercedes’ many fans all over the world.”
Lotus F1 Team
Power On Me – Spanish Grand Prix
Kimi Räikkönen will start from fourth on the grid and Romain Grosjean sixth after qualifying for the 2013 Spanish Grand Prix. Romain posted the seventh fastest time of the day, but was promoted one place after a penalty for Ferrari driver Felipe Massa.
On a warm and dry day at the Circuit de Catalunya the E21 proved pacey and reliable, with both drivers proceeding through Q1 using only the hard compound tyres.
Kimi Räikkönen, E21-03. Q: P4, 1:21.177. FP3: P2, 1:21.907
“Our race pace has been pretty good all year so let’s try and get on the podium”
“That was more or less all we could do today. I didn’t make any mistakes on my fastest lap so that was pretty much all there was to come from the car. I wouldn’t say it was a perfect lap, but I don’t think we would have been much higher up the order if it had been. The Mercedes, as we’ve seen before, seems to be pretty fast in qualifying but hopefully in the race we can turn it around. Our race pace has been pretty good all year so let’s try and get on the podium. I’ll have to make a good start, then let’s see what happens.”
Romain Grosjean, E21-02. Q: P6, 1:21.308. FP3: P4, 1:21.069
“I think we could have done a bit better and maybe sit one or two rows further towards the front”
“We did a good job today throughout qualifying but on my last lap I made a mistake into turn one, so I decided to back off and save the tyres. Otherwise, I think we could have done a bit better and maybe sit one or two rows further towards the front. I was happy with the car and all the work we’ve done since Friday. For tomorrow, we will see what happens as the competition is very tight. As we have seen, conditions are variable this weekend and once more the tyres should be key.”
Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director:
“There’s certainly the potential to have a very good race tomorrow”
How was qualifying for the team?
We’re pretty happy with today’s performance. We made some changes from yesterday then had a productive morning validating them on track. It was a reasonably straight-forward qualifying session with both cars saving two sets of the medium tyres for Q3 and no real dramas to speak of. Unfortunately Romain had a lock-up on his last lap, otherwise he would have been right on Kimi’s pace, but to have the slower of our two cars starting from P6 certainly isn’t a cause for concern.
Looking at race strategy, does the new hard compound or allocation of the hard and medium present any issues?
It doesn’t cause us any problems. The new hard compound seems better suited to this track than the previous version, certainly with the temperatures we’ve experienced here. It works well for us. The allocation of the hard and medium compounds is not a life changing scenario either.
What’s possible in the race?
P4 and P6 starting positions are pretty decent for us when you consider the race pace and tyre management we’ve been able to show so far this season. There’s certainly the potential to have a very good race tomorrow.
Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team
2013 Spanish Grand Prix: Qualifying
Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton locked out the front row of the grid in Barcelona today for MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS.
Nico scored his second consecutive pole position and the team’s third in a row at the Circuit de Catalunya this afternoon
With Lewis in second, both Mercedes will start from the front row for the first time since the 2012 Chinese Grand Prix
Both drivers used three sets of option tyres during qualifying and saved four fresh sets of the prime compound for the race
Drivers No. Chassis No. Qualifying 1 Qualifying 2 Qualifying 3
- Nico Rosberg 9 F1 W04 / 03 1:21.913 P2 1:21.776 P6 1:20.718 P1
- Lewis Hamilton 10 F1 W04 / 04 1:21.728 P1 1:21.001 P1 1:20.972 P2
- Weather Warm
- Temperatures Air: 19-21°C Track: 33-38°C
It’s a great feeling to be on pole again. So far this weekend has been very positive and it’s a pleasure to see that the team is improving and fighting through the problems together. I know everyone back at the factory and at home will have been watching this afternoon and it’s a great feeling for all of us. However, we know that this is only half of the job completed and have the painful memory of what happened in Bahrain to prove that. We’ve worked very hard on our race pace but this track is tough for the tyres, particularly with graining. So it will be a big challenge tomorrow and our goal is to make the most of the opportunity we have from starting at the front and get a strong result for the team.
A great job by the team and I’m so happy that we got a one-two qualifying result today. It’s a real bonus for us to be so high up, and that’s all down to the hard work that the team have put into this car, I can’t thank them enough. Of course, I’d like to be one place higher but Nico did an awesome job and really nailed his lap. I’ve not been totally happy with the balance of my car all weekend, even today, so we need to look at it this evening and see what we can do for the race. Limiting the degradation is going to be my major challenge as the general pace isn’t too bad. It’s going to be tough to keep these positions tomorrow but we’ll give it our best shot.
A great job by the team and both of our drivers today: I believe we have the strongest driver pairing in Formula One this year and they demonstrated it today. However, we know that it’s tomorrow afternoon that counts and we have worked diligently this weekend to find the right solutions to improve our performance and consistency in race conditions. I don’t think we will be the strongest team in the race but we are starting from the best possible position. Now we need to get through the first stint, which will certainly be interesting on the option tyre, and then see how our race develops.
It was a nice surprise for us to see both cars at the top of the times this afternoon but we know that Sunday afternoon is a more complicated challenge for us. We have worked all weekend with the race in mind but it is clear that we are harder on the tyres than some of our rivals. Tomorrow will show us what progress we have made on improving this situation and our pace in the race.
Sauber F1 Team
- Spanish Grand Prix – Qualifying – Saturday, 11.05.2013
- Weather: partly cloudy, then sunny 18-21°C air, 20-38°C track
Qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix yet again showed how much of a difference a few tenths of a second can make. Sauber F1 Team driver Nico Hülkenberg ended up 15th, just five hundredths of a second slower than P13. Esteban Gutiérrez finished in 16th. On the positive side, the updates the team brought to Barcelona are working as expected.
- Sauber C32-Ferrari (Chassis 01/Ferrari 056)
- Qualifying: 15th in Q2 (1:22.389 / medium tyres)
- 3rd practice: 16th (1:23.388 min / medium tyres / 18 laps)
“Qualifying went according to plan today. It is disappointing, as we are simply too slow. The updates this weekend were a step in the right direction, and the set up of the car during qualifying was good, but not good enough as the other teams might have improved even more. I am very satisfied with my lap in Q2. It was the perfect lap. We used two sets of mediums in order to try to get a better grid position, but in the end it wasn’t enough, because we were missing pace. Other than that, I think we can be satisfied with what we have done, but we simply need to find more speed.”
- Sauber C32-Ferrari (Chassis 03/Ferrari 056)
- Qualifying: 16th in Q2 (1:22.793 min / medium tyres)
- 3rd practice: 13th (1:23.371 min / medium tyres / 21 laps)
“Qualifying today was tricky. Yesterday and in FP3 this morning I felt quite confident and the laps seemed to be consistent. Overall I think the updates are a good step forward. I could have got more speed out of the last set of tyres, but it’s a delicate position when you are driving on the limit and I tried to get the best out of what we have. I’m not satisfied, as I want to be further in front. We simply need to keep pushing to get more speed.”
Monisha Kaltenborn, Team Principal:
“We cannot be satisfied with P15 and P16. Especially on a track like this one, it will not be easy to achieve a lot from where we start. Both drivers showed great performances today. This shows we have reduced the gap in qualifying, but still have to improve more.”
Tom McCullough, Head of Track Engineering:
“Yet another tight qualifying session where a few tenths move you a long way up the grid. We can take positives from the fact that all the updated parts on the car are working as intended. Both drivers drove well during both sessions. Tyre management will be key tomorrow in the race. So along with that and the strategy we’ll now look at the best way to move ourselves forward from where we are starting.”
Sahara Force India F1 Team
2013 Formula 1 Spanish Grand Prix, Qualifying Report
Qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix saw Paul Di Resta qualify in tenth place ahead of teammate Adrian Sutil in P13.
P10 Paul Di Resta VJM06-04
- Q1: 1:22.663
- Q2: 1:22.019
- Q3: 1:22.233
Paul: “I think we can feel pretty pleased with tenth because we achieved our target of reaching Q3. I did not quite get the maximum from Q3, because it was difficult to optimise the final sector on my out lap, but we are still in a good position for the race. Tyre wear will play a big role tomorrow because this place is one of the hardest tracks for the tyres. Hopefully that will work to our advantage and we can make some progress with a good strategy and not spend too much time in the pit lane. There will obviously be a lot of cars behind me with new tyres, so the race to the first corner will be crucial.”
P13 Adrian Sutil VJM06-03
- Q1: 1:22.952
- Q2: 1:22.346
Adrian: “Q1 went well and my run on the hard tyres gave me some good information before I fitted the mediums. Then Q2 was a bit disappointing because my position on the track for the final run was not ideal. Vergne pulled out of the pits just as I was leaving and I had Nico [Hulkenberg] pushing from behind. Also Webber was on a flying lap and it was difficult to find a gap. I think that’s the main reason why I missed out on Q3 because we had the pace to be in the top ten. I’m sure my car is going to work well tomorrow, but it’s so tough to overtake here and qualifying position is very important.”
Robert Fernley, Deputy Team Principal
“It’s good to see Paul make it through to Q3 – the first time the team has done so in Barcelona – and it means we’re in a good position to go and fight for points. Adrian has been matching Paul’s pace in all the sessions but his Q2 lap was compromised by track position – he couldn’t get a clean lap and that cost him a few rows on the grid. I expect us to be strong tomorrow and hopefully we can demonstrate the sort of race pace we’ve shown in the previous four races. The car is nicely balanced, we are working the tyres well, and there’s every reason to believe we can come away with two cars inside the points.”
Spanish GP Qualifying
- Valtteri Bottas qualified 17th with Pastor Maldonado 18th for tomorrow’s Spanish Grand Prix.
- Both drivers pushed hard, but ultimately there was not enough pace in the FW35 to progress into Q2.
- The team will continue to push, both here and at the factory, to move forward tomorrow and over the coming races.
Mike Coughlan, Technical Director: After winning here last year, to go out in Q1 is really disappointing for us. On such a close grid, in which Valtteri only missed out on Q2 by half a tenth, we need to be making bigger steps forward than those around us if we want to be able to show any improvement in results. Our race pace is more competitive than what we have shown today so we still aim to fight for points in tomorrow’s race, but everyone at Williams, both here and at the factory, knows that there is a great deal of work to do in order for us to move forward this season.
Valtteri Bottas: Unfortunately the result from today shows where we are compared to others, but I still think we’ve made a step forward and we’re heading in the right direction. It seems everyone else has improved as well which means we are in similar position to the first four races. Hopefully we can keep making the same steps race-by-race. We will try our best tomorrow and I still think we can climb up the grid as our race pace looks good.
Pastor Maldonado: We’re having a difficult time with the car at the moment, but we have been working very hard to improve things. We were missing a lot of grip which made it difficult to get a good time today. In terms of performance, we’re not there but we will keep focussing on the work needed to move us up the grid.
Scuderia Toro Rosso
2013 SPANISH GRAND PRIX – SATURDAY 11/05/2013
Daniel Ricciardo (STR8-04)
- Third Practice Session
- Best lap: 1:23.767, pos. 18th, 17 laps
- Best lap: (Q1) 1:22.905, (Q2) 1:22.127, pos. 11th
“I was pleased with the way the session went overall, particularly Q2 and I think we got the most we could out of the car. While yesterday was a good day for us, this morning was nowhere near as positive, as I had problems with the balance on the car. So we had to play catch-up and this afternoon we managed to get it right. I was happy with my lap in Q2, even though you can’t help feeling a little bit disappointed to miss out on Q3 by such a small margin. But we are close and we can have a good race tomorrow. We have made progress and we are once again looking as competitive as we did in China.”
Jean-Eric Vergne (STR8-03)
- Third Practice Session
- Best lap: 1:22.759, pos. 10th, 15 laps
- Best lap: (Q1) 1:22.775, (Q2) 1:22.166, pos. 12th
“We have made a good step forward which means we start the European part of the season with a stronger car, so that anything is possible tomorrow. There are a lot of positives to take from this afternoon, starting with the fact my car’s set-up will be even better suited to race conditions than to qualifying. Twelfth is a good place to start and points should be on the agenda tomorrow. The team has done a fantastic job to bring some updates that have worked well, but we still need to do a bit more to be genuine contenders for Q3, but so far it has been a good weekend and I am feeling very confident for tomorrow.”
James Key (Technical Director): “We brought a lot of new bits here, making significant changes to the car, as part of a plan established a long time ago for this weekend in Barcelona. With such a big change, we didn’t know if everything would work as planned and yesterday we saw that, fundamentally, it seemed to work as we hoped. After a satisfactory Friday, this morning Daniel suffered a bit with the balance on his car. However, Jean-Eric has been comfortable with the car all weekend, doing a very good job. Our qualifying result has highs and lows, because it’s our best overall team result this year and Jean-Eric did very well to be so close to his team-mate, but on the other hand, it’s a shame to be out of Q3 by the blink of an eye. It is satisfying that we have made a good step and we are still learning about the package. In our favour for tomorrow is the fact that, being just outside Q3, we can choose our own tyre strategy for the start and we are ahead of all the other cars in that same situation, while we have also saved a new set of Medium tyres. We don’t know quite what to expect from the tyres in the race, as they both seem to be working well as a race tyre.”
Caterham F1 Team Partner information
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FP3: Sunny / overcast, dry: min / max track temp 27° – 36°, air temp 20° – 22°
Q1: Dry, sunny; min / max track temp 35° – 37°, air temp 22°
Fastest laps / positions:
FP3: PIC 1.24.775, 19th / VDG 1.25.250, 22nd
Q1: VDG 1.24.661, 19th / PIC 1.25.070, 22nd
FP3: PIC 18 / VDG 18
Q1: VDG 6 / PIC 6
Charles Pic, car #20, chassis CT03-06
1105 – 1117: Run 1, 7 laps (hard tyres)
Changes: front wing flap angles, front / rear brake duct blanking
1129 – 1139: Run 2, 6 laps (hard tyres)
Changes: front wing flap angle
1151 – 1200: Run 3, 5 laps (medium tyres)
1407 – 1413: Run 1, x laps (x tyres)
Changes: front wing flap angle
1418 – 1423: Run 2, x laps (x tyres)
Giedo van der Garde, car #21, chassis CT03-04
1105 – 1115: Run 1, 6 laps (hard tyres)
Changes: front wing flap angle, front / rear ride height
1128 – 1140: Run 2, 7 laps (hard tyres)
Changes: front wing flap angle, front / rear ride height
1152 – 1201: Run 3, 5 laps (medium tyres)
1407 – 1413: Run 1, 3 laps (medium tyres)
Changes: front wing flap angle
1418 – 1423: Run 2, 3 laps (medium tyres)
Charles Pic: “It’s been a bit of a tough weekend so far. We’ve put a few new parts on the car and have tried several setup options to get the most out of them and find a balance I can use, but it hasn’t worked yet. FP3 was ok – I didn’t have a completely clean lap so we knew there was a bit more time to come after that session, but in qualifying the car just didn’t feel like it was working as well as it had in the morning session. I’m not too sure why but we’ll go through all the data and find out if there’s anything we can do for tomorrow.
“On the positive side, we know we have good long run pace and I think we can have a decent race tomorrow. The weather’s supposed to be a bit warmer and that’ll suit our car better than the cooler conditions we’ve had so far this weekend. Our pitstops have been good all year and our tyre degradation here has not been too bad on both compounds, so I think we should be ok for the race.”
Giedo van der Garde: “I’m obviously really pleased with how today’s gone, both in FP3 and qualifying. We made a few changes to the car overnight to try and find a balance with the new parts and it’s worked out really well. I’m not running the same package as my teammate here – I have most of the new package except the front wing so we went a slightly different way than Charles on setup and even though I didn’t get a really quick lap in during FP3 I could feel we were going in the right direction. In qualifying it came good and on the second run I had a clean outlap, got the tyres working well, and then a really good run to set my best quali time of the season so far.
“Days like today show how my learning curve keeps improving. I’m working better with the engineers in every session on track and they are finding out more about how to help me get the most out of the car. This is the sort of performance I’d targeted for when we had new parts on the car so I’m really pleased for me, the whole team and everyone who’s backed me that we can deliver like we did today. There’s more to come, in the race tomorrow and with more new parts for the rest of the year and this is a great way to kick off the European season.”
Marussia F1 Team
- 2013 Spanish Grand Prix – Qualifying
- Circuit de Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain
- Saturday 11 May 2013
- BIANCHI MR02-02 P20 1:24.713 6 laps
- CHILTON MR02-03 P21 1:24.996 6 laps
The Marussia F1 Team’s Jules Bianchi and Max Chilton ended the day in P20 and P21 respectively at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona today, in the build-up to Sunday’s 66-lap Spanish Grand Prix.
The Team are fielding a new development package here this weekend which they have spent the past two days of practice optimising. Some changes made overnight paid dividends in this morning’s FP3 session, although there is still work to be done on the balance.
Jules Bianchi #22
“We had a good Free Practice 3 session this morning and the changes we had made seemed to move us on quite a bit from yesterday. We found more grip but the car is still not well-balanced and this is the most I could get from it today. The balance was quite variable in the first and last sector on different laps and I’m still not happy in the high-speed corners. We need to go through the data and understand what I can do in the race tomorrow to manage these situations. We need a good start to get ahead of Van der Garde but I think we will see some improvement tomorrow in terms of our race pace.”
Max Chilton #23
“We’re not there yet with the balance of the car but I am pleased with the progress we have made since yesterday. My first lap in particular was strong and I’m definitely feeling the benefit of not having lost track time this weekend. I feel like I’ve been able to demonstrate more of my progress. I’m really looking forward to the race now.”
John Booth, Team Principal
“We were pleased that the analysis we did overnight on our upgrade package showed that we continue to enjoy good correlation with our development tools. The upgrades we have for this race have certainly brought more performance to the car and last night the feeling was that if we’d had more time to work on the developments during FP1 and FP2 there would be more to come. We haven’t really found a great balance on the car yet, however we did have a very positive FP3 session where we made good improvements to the car. Jules was unable to get a good lap together in qualifying due to a difficult balance and Max had to be a bit more aggressive on his out lap due to traffic to find clean air. So neither driver quite got the lap they wanted today but it’s good to have them so close to each other and I think we can look forward to a good race tomorrow.”
2013 Spanish Grand Prix – Qualifying
THREE-STOP RACE LIKELY IN SPAIN
Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg has clinched his third career pole position, ahead of his team mate Lewis Hamilton. Pole position was set on Pirelli’s P Zero White medium tyres, which have been nominated alongside the new P Zero Orange hard tyres this weekend.
Rosberg’s pole time of 1m20.718s on the medium compound was more than a second a half quicker than the 2012 pole position set by Williams driver Pastor Maldonado (1m22.285s) on last year’s soft, despite the fact that usage of the DRS was unlimited last season. Historically a strong qualifying performance is vital in Barcelona, as only once has the race been won from beyond the front row of the grid.
Ferrari driver Felipe Massa went quickest in the final free practice session this morning, sealing fastest time by just 0.006 seconds from Lotus’s Kimi Raikkonen right at the end of the hour, using the medium compound.
Pirelli’s motorsport director Paul Hembery said: “The teams had their preparation time for qualifying limited by wet weather yesterday morning, so there were still a number of question marks today. As expected we saw a considerable degree of track evolution, with this year’s pole time in Barcelona the fastest-ever since Pirelli came to Formula One in 2011. The teams have quickly got to grips with our latest evolution of the P Zero Orange hard, which should make it easier to maintain the tyres within the optimal working temperature range and so use a wider variety of strategies. With plenty of lateral energy through the rubber, an abrasive surface, and warm temperatures Barcelona is quite challenging for the tyres. We would expect to see three pit stops tomorrow – as was the case last year. The race has never been won from outside the front row, so it will be interesting to see if any drivers can reverse that trend through the use of strategy.”
The Pirelli mystery strategy predictor:
The fastest strategy for the 66-lap race seems set to be a three-stopper in Spain this weekend, as was the case last year. It goes as follows: start on the medium tyre, switch the medium on lap 16, medium again on lap 33 and a final stop for hard tyres on lap 50.
Alternatively, there is another effective three-stop strategy. Start on the medium tyre, switch to the medium on lap 17, switch to the hard on lap 34 and a final stint on the hard tyre from lap 50.
Fastest compounds in FP3:
|1.||F. Massa||1m21.901s||Medium New|
|2.||K. Raikkonen||1m21.907s||Medium New|
|3.||M. Webber||1m22.044s||Medium New|
Top 10 tyre use:
|N. Rosberg||Medium New||1m20.718s|
|L. Hamilton||Medium New||1m20.972s|
|S. Vettel||Medium New||1m21.054s|
|K. Raikkonen||Medium New||1m21.177s|
|F. Alonso||Medium New||1m21.218s|
|F. Massa||Medium New||1m21.219s|
|R. Grosjean||Medium New||1m21.308s|
|M. Webber||Medium New||1m21.570s|
|S. Perez||Medium New||1m22.069s|
|P. Di Resta||Medium New||1m22.233s|
Renault Sport F1