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2013 F1

Qualifying quotes – Williams, Caterham, Marussia

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cate-vand-monz-2013-3-886x590Williams
Pastor Maldonado (15th – starts 14th after Sutil penalty, Q2 – 1m 25.011s)

“We were penalised when we were stopped at the weighbridge during Q2 which meant we weren’t able to complete the extra laps we had planned. Realistically we could have been nearer to the top ten as this more we looked better. Even during qualifying the car still felt quite good but unfortunately that was all we could do today.”

Valtteri Bottas (18th, Q1 – 1m 25.291s)
“On my fastest laps on the option tyre in qualifying I had a good clean lap with no mistakes which I really thought would be enough to get through to Q2, but the lap time wasn’t there. We need to look at the data tonight because it felt much better than what the time showed. Our race pace looks good for tomorrow and there’s plenty of opportunities to overtake so I still think that we can have a good race.”

Xevi Pujolar, Williams chief race engineer
“We did some tests with the rear wing level in FP3 and both drivers were happy with the balance of the car going into qualifying. We knew it was important to put everything together in one lap as the times were very close. Valtteri was struggling for grip in Q1, particularly on the option medium tyre. Pastor did a good job in Q1 but then after his warm up run in Q2 we were stopped at the weighbridge. We allow a margin for this, but the length of the stop then didn’t allow us enough time to get the car back and out in time to do the three lap run we had planned to get the optimum grip in the tyre. There is still a chance of rain for the race so even though we are further down on the grid than we would like, it will be about tyre management and we still have a chance to get some points tomorrow.”

Caterham
Giedo van der Garde (19th, Q1 – 1m 26.406s)

“FP3 started okay for me. We still had some understeer in sector two and there was too much front locking so we corrected that for run two. The real issue was still managing the front tyre warm up which is obviously critical in maximising performance, but throughout the session we kept working on it and by the performance run we were happier with where we were.
In quali we went for two runs on the mediums, going out early in the session for three timed laps and the car felt pretty good. There was a bit more to come in sector one and we put more front wing on for the second run and on the first flying lap I nailed it. A mid-26 was about as good as we could have hoped for so I’m really pleased with how quali went. It’s another session where I’m building my experience and my confidence in the car so I’ll go into the race feeling really good.”

Charles Pic (20th, Q1 – 1m 26.563s)
“The team worked very hard last night going through all the data from yesterday and after my first FP3 run it was clear we’d made good progress. The car felt better balanced, particularly in the medium speed corners and it improved again throughout the session. By the time we went for the performance run we’d found a setup that was working pretty well, much closer to what we wanted to see so we went into quali feeling quite positive.
Between FP3 and quali the track temps increased and when I went out for the first run in Q1 the car balance wasn’t there anymore. It had changed from the morning and I felt like I couldn’t really push. We’d opted for two runs on the mediums and my quickest lap on the first run was okay. We added a bit more front wing for the second run and I put in my quickest time on the final lap of run two, but there was definitely more to come if we’d had the same sort of balance we’d had in FP3. Despite that, the main target for the team was to finish ahead of our direct competitors and we clearly did that today.”

Marussia
Jules Bianchi (21st, Q1 – 1m 27.085s)

“Unfortunately we just ran out of time to keep working on striking a good car balance here. It is clear that I am fighting the car a little and losing time because of this, but I am more hopeful that we will be slightly better off in terms of race pace tomorrow. Quite disappointing, as this is such a fantastic circuit and one I feel is particularly special to me, but all we can do is our best tomorrow and hope that some chances come our way.”

Max Chilton (22nd, Q1 – 1m 27.480s)
“After such a positive start yesterday, I was hoping for a better result today, so it’s a little disappointing and frustrating to have fallen back a bit. I do take some comfort though in the fact that much of that can be attributed to a fuelling issue, which we only discovered at the end of qualifying. 19.5kgs will have made all the difference today and it is easy to do the maths and gauge the impact that has had relative to the cars directly ahead on the grid tomorrow. So I will take some encouragement from that and the fact that our race pace yesterday did look slightly more promising. We will have our work cut out tomorrow for sure, given where we are now starting, but we will do everything possible to recover some ground.”

John Booth, Marussia team principal
“This morning with both cars we continued working through various mechanical set-ups in order to try to improve the balance of the car from yesterday. It is fairly clear that the car is quite difficult to drive in these low downforce conditions and despite very different set-up directions on the two cars we haven’t been able to arrive at a good compromise set-up overall. Into qualifying it is clear that tyre warm-up is a significant factor and this called for slightly longer runs than usual. On the second run we tried something a little different in order to try to gain more temperature but it seems that wasn’t quite enough and several laps were still required. Neither driver improved on their second runs and we will spend some time analysing what went wrong. On Jules’ second run, we had an issue with the DRS, which we are currently investigating and at the end of the session we also discovered a fuelling error on Max’s car – in the order of 19.5kgs. This will have significantly impacted upon Max’s lap time and our overall delta to the cars in front. There’s nothing we can do about it now but it does give us some confidence that, going into the race, the gap is not quite as big as we had perhaps feared. Coupled with the question mark over the forecast for tomorrow afternoon’s race, we look forward to what will hopefully be a more rewarding day.”

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