United States GP – The statistics

January 2, 2014

United States GP – The statistics

United States GP – The statistics

4 the races in which Felipe Massa has failed to score points out of the 18 so far this season. The no-score in Austin comes on top of the ones in Sakhir, Monaco and Nurburgring. Today also brings to an end a run of eight consecutive races in the points for the Brazilian.

5 the number of consecutive races without a Ferrari driver on the podium. The last top three finish dates back to the Singapore Grand Prix, where Fernando Alonso finished second. That was also the last time the Scuderia’s points total topped the 20 mark (26.)

6 the number of top three finishes for Fernando Alonso in the Drivers’ World Championship. Today’s fifth place seals his third second place out of four seasons with Ferrari, that go along with his two title crowns with Renault and a third for McLaren.

Abu Dhabi GP – Searching in the dark

January 1, 2014

Searching in the dark

Abu Dhabi GP – Searching in the dark

Yas Marina, 1 November – In 2008 we first saw the night lights of Singapore, so obviously when the UAE decided it wanted a slice of the Formula 1 pie it had to come up with something different and so the “twilight” race was born. Just as the first race under the Marina Bay Ferris Wheel attracted speculation that this new idea of electric lighting might be dangerous to race under, so too the thought of drivers adapting from daylight to night time in Yas Marina was seen as potentially tricky. Of course, that has not proved to be the case so far and again today, F1 fans at the track and at home were treated to the sight of daylight retreating and the night settling in very quickly. All it requires is for the drivers to switch to a less tinted visor.

The showbiz setting and timings did little to alter the hard technical realities on track, with the champion elect, Sebastian Vettel certainly not taking it easy five days after securing the Drivers’ crown in India. He was fastest this evening, ahead of Red Bull team-mate, Mark Webber, the only non-world champion in the top four on the time sheet, as in third and fourth places respectively were Lewis Hamilton for Mercedes and Kimi Raikkonen in the Lotus.

One has to skip past the two McLarens to find Fernando Alonso in eighth place, two ahead of his Scuderia Ferrari team-mate, Felipe Massa. Both men had a trouble free time, but neither of them was happy with the performance level of the F138. Although conditions are the same for all 22 cars on track, it’s true that the unusual effect of a track temperature that drops as the session progresses, when usually the opposite is true, certainly complicates the task of finding those precious fractions of a second needed to propel the Prancing Horse up the order when it comes to tomorrow’s Qualifying session.

Like today’s final practice, the grid deciding hour also begins under the sun and ends under floodlights. At the moment, there is little doubt that the Soft Pirelli will provide the quicker lap time, by well over a second for most runners. However, unlike a week ago in Greater Noida, there should be no tactical qualifying on the slower Medium, so as to start the race on it, as even the stickiest of the two compounds here should manage a decent first stint length on the marble smooth Abu Dhabi track surface.

McLaren Preview Korean Grand Prix 2013

December 31, 2013

2013 Korean Grand Prix preview

 Korea International Circuit facts & stats

The Korea International Circuit is one of seven tracks on this year’s calendar to have been designed by German architect Hermann Tilke. It was built in 2010 and it has three distinct sections: long straights in sector one, some fast corners in the middle of the lap and a twisty section towards the end that has a street circuit feel.

 Car set-up is a compromise between straight-line speed and slow-corner grip, which is made even more critical by the smooth track surface. For the fourth and final time this year, Pirelli are taking their Medium and Supersoft compounds to the race. The more durable Medium compound is likely to be the better race tyre, but the Supersoft rubber will give the cars more grip over one lap in qualifying.

 After the excitement of Formula 1’s only night race in Singapore two weeks ago, the Korean Grand Prix starts at the more conventional time of 1500hrs. However, the early sunset in the southwest corner of Korea doesn’t give the race organisers much flexibility should the weather turn bad, as it did in 2010. A one-hour rain delay during the inaugural Korean Grand Prix resulted in the race ending at 1758, five minutes after the sun had set!

 Race distance       55 laps (308.630km/191.783 miles)

Start time               15:00 (local)/06:00 (GMT)

Circuit length        5.615km/3.489 miles

2012 winner           Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull RB8) 55 laps in 1hr36:28.651s (191.939km/h)

2012 pole               Mark Webber (Red Bull RB8) 1m37.242s (207.873km/h)

Lap record             Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull RB7) 1m39.605s (202.941km/h)

 McLaren at the Korean Grand Prix

Wins                       –

Poles                      1 (2011)

Fastest laps           –

 Car 5: Jenson Button

Age         33 (January 19 1980)

GPs         241

Wins       15

Poles      8

FLs         8

 “If there’s one circuit on the F1 calendar that hasn’t been particularly kind to me, then it’s the track in Korea. I had a pretty tough race there in 2010, an average race there in ’11, and I didn’t even have a race there last year – someone smashed into me at Turn Three on the first lap, and my race was over.

 “Of course, it would be easy for that to make your head drop, but, in fact, the opposite is true: I travel to Korea next week even more determined than normal to reverse the trend, get the absolute maximum from the car and get a good result. I think we had a solid weekend in Singapore, the engineers, the strategists and the mechanics got the best from the car, and we couldn’t have realistically expected more. That’s the aim again next weekend.

 “This is the first of three pairs of back-to-back races that conclude the season. I think it’s very important for us to further consolidate our position in the championship, so getting points in both Korea and Japan will be important.

 “We go into this weekend with maximum commitment.”

 Car 6: Sergio Perez

Age         23 (January 26 1990)

GPs         50

Wins       0

Poles      0

FLs         2

 “The Korea International Circuit is an interesting venue – it’s got two very distinct elements, the first half, which is basically a couple of heavy braking zones and three extremely long straights; and the final section, which is a long, undulating section with a mix of high- and medium-speed corners.

 “It’s a somewhat technical course, one that rewards precision more than it does commitment, so the main challenge comes from dialing the car into the track, which is satisfying when you get it right because there’s a lot of time to be had from running a well-balanced car.

 “The aim is also to have a car that works well in the principal overtaking areas – into Turns One and Three – which means making a little bit of a compromise to the set-up. That’s particularly important because it’s very difficult to overtake once you get into the twisty section, as there’s really only a single racing line.

 “The Korean Grand Prix is a very tough race – it might not have that reputation, but, make no mistake, to do well here is always extremely rewarding.”

 Martin Whitmarsh

Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

“This final leg of the world championship – in which we’ll race in six grands prix in just eight weeks – is an incredibly tough physical feat. After 13 races, and with the prospect of many more weeks spent on the road and thousands of miles spent away from home, it’s essential to remain fit, focused and dedicated in order to stave off the inevitable burnout that comes at the end of such a long year.

 “For Vodafone McLaren Mercedes, we go into these final races with the very clear intention of consolidating our position in the constructors’ championship. While improving our position sadly looks impossible, it’s important to consistently achieve top-10 finishes with both drivers in order to strengthen our points cushion over our closest rivals behind. We achieved that in Singapore and will be looking for similar performances from now until the end of the season.

 “That may not be a particularly glamorous task for a team that enjoys winning, but it nonetheless calls for constant application, focus and commitment as we count down the remaining races during this important phase of the season.”

Ferrari Race Report Singapore Grand Prix 2013

December 31, 2013

Fernando Alonso

Singapore GP – Spaniard Sensational in Singapore

Singapore, 22 September – Many believe Fernando Alonso is being fanciful when he says the Drivers’ championship is not decided yet. However, one has to admire his determination after tonight’s incredible drive to second place under the spotlights at Marina Bay. Felipe Massa also delivered a strong performance, taking the chequered flag in the same sixth place from which he started the race. Fernando’s race featured two tyre changes, the Brazilian’s three. The Spanish Ferrari driver also talked about being realistic earlier this weekend and sure enough, the need for realism took its usual form, as Sebastian Vettel was simply on a different planet taking another well-deserved victory for Red Bull. Joining them on the podium, having struggled with back pain for much of the weekend, was Kimi Raikkonen in the Lotus.

As the lights went out, Rosberg briefly passed Vettel but the pole man got it back at the first chicane, while Fernando made a blistering start to go third at the first corner, by just driving along the wall, ahead of Grosjean and Webber and that was the move on which his second place was built. Felipe maintained his sixth place grid position, after briefly ceding it to Hamilton’s Mercedes. By this time leader Vettel in the Red Bull had already built up a gap of over 4 seconds to second placed Rosberg in the Mercedes. Fernando was 1.2s behind the German.

The gaps grew bigger so that by lap 4, Vettel led Rosberg by 6.2, with Fernando 2.2 behind and 1.2 ahead of Webber in the other Red Bull. Grosjean’s Lotus was under a second behind the Australian, with Felipe exactly 1.0 behind the Frenchman, with a 0.8 cushion over Hamilton in the Mercedes. The rest of the top ten was made up of Button, Hulkenberg and Perez. Raikkonen brought his Lotus down pit lane to start the first run of changes, rejoining with another set of Supersofts. Lap 11 saw Fernando put in a fastest race lap. Several cars at the lower end of the order came in for tyres on that same lap. Felipe made his first stop, fitting the harder tyre on lap 12, dropping to 13th.

Webber, Button and Hulkenberg all pitted on lap 13, the Australian taking on Mediums. Fernando came in next time round, also fitting the Medium tyre, dropping to sixth behind Di Resta’ Force India. Rosberg came in from second on lap 15, as did Grosjean and the German’s team-mate Hamilton. With Vettel yet to pit, the order behind him was Rosberg, Di Resta, also on zero stops, with Fernando fourth, right on the Scotsman’s gearbox, losing precious time to the two leaders. Vettel changed to the Mediums on lap 17, keeing the lead, while Fernando was still trying all he could to pass Di Resta, the only driver not to have pitted at this stage.

Finally, on lap 20 of the 61 lap race, Fernando had some clean air ahead of him as Di Resta came down pit lane and the Ferrari man set about cutting back the 7.5s gap to second placed Rosberg. The Spaniard trailed the leader by over 16 seconds, while Felipe was seventh, 3.4 behind Hamilton and 1.5 ahead of Button. The race was settling into a pattern until lap 24 when Ricciardo crashed the Toro Rosso into the barriers which brought out the most familiar site at the Marina Bay Circuit, the Safety Car. Fernando, Felipe, Grosjean, Button, Raikkonen, Perez, Hulkenberg and Gutierez and Maldonado all dived into the pits to take advantage of the race being neutralised. Fernando was now on another set of Mediums, but Felipe returned to the Supersofts. The Spaniard rejoined in fifth place behind the Safety Car, the highest runner to have made a second tyre change at this point, with Felipe eighth. In fact, the SC helped Fernando a little bit, as it cancelled out much of the time lost behind the Force India.

The race was live again on lap 30 and it was a repeat of the opening scenario, with Vettel immediately pulling out a lead of over 3 seconds on Rosberg, with the rest of the field tightly packed behind the Mercedes, in the order, Webber, Hamilton, Fernando in fifth, Grosjean, Di Resta, with Felipe eighth, now held up by the Force India and Button and Raikkonen completing the top ten. Grosjean had a long pit stop with a technical issue on lap 33. He then pitted again to retire, which promoted Felipe to sixth. Webber and Sutil made their second stops on lap 40, so Fernando was now fourth. Next time round Rosberg changed tyres, so Fernando was back in a podium position again, with 20 laps remaining.

Felipe and Di Resta came in together on lap 42, the Brazilian dropping to twelfth. Lap 43 and Hamilton switched to another set of Mediums, so that Fernando was now second, half a minute behind Vettel on older Primes, but the German brought the Red Bull in on lap 44 for a final change, with enough of a margin over the Ferrari man to maintain his lead. Lap 54 saw Raikkonen pass Button to secure a trip to the bottom step of the podium. At this point Felipe was ninth, but with Di Resta crashing out, the McLarens spiralling down the order and Webber’s car expiring, the last handful of laps meant Felipe was back where he started in sixth to give a welcome boost to the Scuderia’s points fund.

In an amusing post-race moment, Fernando was not alone when he returned to parc ferme on his slowing down lap, as he stopped to give Webber a lift home, the Australian perched on the side pod of the F138! Now there’s a two week break until Korea – Japan, the first of three sets of back-to-back races.

Singapore GP – Spaniard Sensational in Singapore

Singapore, 22 September – Many believe Fernando Alonso is being fanciful when he says the Drivers’ championship is not decided yet. However, one has to admire his determination after tonight’s incredible drive to second place under the spotlights at Marina Bay. Felipe Massa also delivered a strong performance, taking the chequered flag in the same sixth place from which he started the race. Fernando’s race featured two tyre changes, the Brazilian’s three. The Spanish Ferrari driver also talked about being realistic earlier this weekend and sure enough, the need for realism took its usual form, as Sebastian Vettel was simply on a different planet taking another well-deserved victory for Red Bull. Joining them on the podium, having struggled with back pain for much of the weekend, was Kimi Raikkonen in the Lotus.

As the lights went out, Rosberg briefly passed Vettel but the pole man got it back at the first chicane, while Fernando made a blistering start to go third at the first corner, by just driving along the wall, ahead of Grosjean and Webber and that was the move on which his second place was built. Felipe maintained his sixth place grid position, after briefly ceding it to Hamilton’s Mercedes. By this time leader Vettel in the Red Bull had already built up a gap of over 4 seconds to second placed Rosberg in the Mercedes. Fernando was 1.2s behind the German.

The gaps grew bigger so that by lap 4, Vettel led Rosberg by 6.2, with Fernando 2.2 behind and 1.2 ahead of Webber in the other Red Bull. Grosjean’s Lotus was under a second behind the Australian, with Felipe exactly 1.0 behind the Frenchman, with a 0.8 cushion over Hamilton in the Mercedes. The rest of the top ten was made up of Button, Hulkenberg and Perez. Raikkonen brought his Lotus down pit lane to start the first run of changes, rejoining with another set of Supersofts. Lap 11 saw Fernando put in a fastest race lap. Several cars at the lower end of the order came in for tyres on that same lap. Felipe made his first stop, fitting the harder tyre on lap 12, dropping to 13th.

Webber, Button and Hulkenberg all pitted on lap 13, the Australian taking on Mediums. Fernando came in next time round, also fitting the Medium tyre, dropping to sixth behind Di Resta’ Force India. Rosberg came in from second on lap 15, as did Grosjean and the German’s team-mate Hamilton. With Vettel yet to pit, the order behind him was Rosberg, Di Resta, also on zero stops, with Fernando fourth, right on the Scotsman’s gearbox, losing precious time to the two leaders. Vettel changed to the Mediums on lap 17, keeing the lead, while Fernando was still trying all he could to pass Di Resta, the only driver not to have pitted at this stage.

Finally, on lap 20 of the 61 lap race, Fernando had some clean air ahead of him as Di Resta came down pit lane and the Ferrari man set about cutting back the 7.5s gap to second placed Rosberg. The Spaniard trailed the leader by over 16 seconds, while Felipe was seventh, 3.4 behind Hamilton and 1.5 ahead of Button. The race was settling into a pattern until lap 24 when Ricciardo crashed the Toro Rosso into the barriers which brought out the most familiar site at the Marina Bay Circuit, the Safety Car. Fernando, Felipe, Grosjean, Button, Raikkonen, Perez, Hulkenberg and Gutierez and Maldonado all dived into the pits to take advantage of the race being neutralised. Fernando was now on another set of Mediums, but Felipe returned to the Supersofts. The Spaniard rejoined in fifth place behind the Safety Car, the highest runner to have made a second tyre change at this point, with Felipe eighth. In fact, the SC helped Fernando a little bit, as it cancelled out much of the time lost behind the Force India.

The race was live again on lap 30 and it was a repeat of the opening scenario, with Vettel immediately pulling out a lead of over 3 seconds on Rosberg, with the rest of the field tightly packed behind the Mercedes, in the order, Webber, Hamilton, Fernando in fifth, Grosjean, Di Resta, with Felipe eighth, now held up by the Force India and Button and Raikkonen completing the top ten. Grosjean had a long pit stop with a technical issue on lap 33. He then pitted again to retire, which promoted Felipe to sixth. Webber and Sutil made their second stops on lap 40, so Fernando was now fourth. Next time round Rosberg changed tyres, so Fernando was back in a podium position again, with 20 laps remaining.

Felipe and Di Resta came in together on lap 42, the Brazilian dropping to twelfth. Lap 43 and Hamilton switched to another set of Mediums, so that Fernando was now second, half a minute behind Vettel on older Primes, but the German brought the Red Bull in on lap 44 for a final change, with enough of a margin over the Ferrari man to maintain his lead. Lap 54 saw Raikkonen pass Button to secure a trip to the bottom step of the podium. At this point Felipe was ninth, but with Di Resta crashing out, the McLarens spiralling down the order and Webber’s car expiring, the last handful of laps meant Felipe was back where he started in sixth to give a welcome boost to the Scuderia’s points fund.

In an amusing post-race moment, Fernando was not alone when he returned to parc ferme on his slowing down lap, as he stopped to give Webber a lift home, the Australian perched on the side pod of the F138! Now there’s a two week break until Korea – Japan, the first of three sets of back-to-back races.

– See more at: http://formula1.ferrari.com/news/singapore-gp-spaniard-sensational-singapore?origin=10230#sthash.agKpTSAJ.dpuf

McLaren Race Report Singapore Grand Prix 2013

December 31, 2013

2013 SINGAPORE GRAND PRIX

 Marina Bay circuit, Sunday September 22

 “Jenson and Checo both drove great, spirited, combative races here this afternoon”

 JENSON BUTTON

MP4-28A-04

Started                   8th

Finished                 7th

Fastest lap            1m51.740s (+3.166s, 15th)

Pitstops                 Two: laps 13 (3.15s) and 25 (3.91s) [Opt-Opt-Pri]

Points                     54 (9th)

 “We thought we might have a chance of a podium, but in the end we didn’t have the pace to keep us ahead of the closing cars. It was good fun trying though, and we have to take risks if we want to get podium finishes this year.

 “We expected to spend most of the race on the Option tyre, so we’d set the car up for that. The Prime tyre didn’t work so well for me, and having to hold Kimi off for so long destroyed my rear tyres and made things very tricky. In the end, as I say, we simply didn’t have enough pace to stop him overtaking.

 “It was a good try though, and a P7 finish isn’t too bad. We couldn’t have done any better with a different strategy, I’m certain of that, and I’m glad we got some good points for the team.”

 SERGIO PEREZ

MP4-28A-03

Started                   14th

Finished                 8th

Fastest lap            1m51.926s (+1.758s, 16th)

Pitstops                 Two: laps 14 (2.63s) and 25 (3.28s) [Opt-Opt-Pri]

Points                     22 (12th)

 “I think we should be satisfied with today’s result – as Jenson says P7 and P8 was probably the best we could have achieved today.

 “In my view the Safety Car came at the wrong time for us, so we had to take a risk by choosing to drive to the finish with two pit-stops. It was pretty tough to keep the car out of the barriers – not to crash yet to lose too much lap-time – but as I say I think it was the right choice.

 “Last but not least, although P7 and P8 isn’t brilliant, it’s the best we could have hoped for – and I dearly hope it’ll put a smile on the faces of my people, in my country, Mexico, who really need something to smile about at this very difficult time.”

 MARTIN WHITMARSH

Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

 “Jenson and Checo both drove great, spirited, combative races here this afternoon, and the result was a brace of points-scoring finishes for Vodafone McLaren Mercedes.

 “Our strategy involved an element of risk, but that risk was worth taking. After all, the second-placed and third-placed finishers both ran the same strategy – and, although our cars didn’t have sufficient pace to beat them to those podium finishes, our drivers boldly embraced the challenge set by a strategy that required them to attack and defend with an impressive mix of aggression and restraint.

 “Checo, in particular, made an extremely good start, moving from his P14 grid slot to P11 on lap one, and thereafter fighting his way through heavy traffic all afternoon to finish eighth at the flag, just behind Jenson in seventh.

 “From here we go to Mokpo, South Korea, where we’ll be aiming to score points with both cars once again.”

Force India Race Report Singapore Grand Prix 2013

December 31, 2013

 

2013 Formula 1 Singtel Singapore Grand Prix, Race Report

 Sahara Force India came away from Singapore with a hard-earned point as Adrian Sutil finished tenth on the streets of Singapore.

 P10      Adrian Sutil   VJM06-03

Tyre strategy: New Medium, Used SuperSoft, Used SuperSoft, Used SuperSoft

 Adrian: “It was a tough race and exhausting in the end. So it feels great to come away with a point and it’s a small motivation for the whole team. In the closing laps of the race I was catching the train of cars in front of me – Perez, Button and Hulkenberg. I thought I had a chance to get ahead of at least one of them, but as soon as I reached the back of the train my tyres went off. In fact, we were all struggling with tyres and I couldn’t attack anymore because it felt like driving on ice. So I’m happy to take the point and it’s well deserved by the whole team.”

P20      Paul Di Resta  VJM06-04

Tyre strategy: New Medium, New Medium, New SuperSoft

 Paul: “It’s such a shame to come away with nothing to show from a race where we had put ourselves in a position to score some valuable points. The management of the tyres was good and the overall performance in race conditions was very strong. Even without the safety car we were in good shape, but as a team we made the right calls and were looking to challenge the train of cars ahead of us in the final few laps. Then I had the incident at turn seven. I’m still not sure what happened, but I took the corner the same way as I had done the previous lap and the car went straight on and wouldn’t stop. The team is investigating what happened.”

Dr Vijay Mallya, Team Principal and Managing Director

“We come away from Singapore with mixed feelings. The positive is that Adrian picked up the final point and that’s a good effort considering where he started the race. On the other hand we missed a golden opportunity to score some big points with Paul, who potentially could have finished in sixth place. His retirement with seven laps to go proved costly and has not helped us in our battle against McLaren. As a team we must focus on the positives of the competitive race pace, good tyre management, and the calls we made with the strategy. Korea in two weeks’ time will be a chance to regroup and keep up our fighting spirit.”

Caterham Race Report Singapore Grand Prix 2013

December 31, 2013

Header 5

 

SINGAPORE GRAND PRIX

Marina Bay Street Circuit, Singapore – 23rd September 2013

Singapore Grand Prix – Sunday 22nd September 2013

Caterham F1 Team Partner Information
GE Security secures the Eiffel Tower and the Statue of Liberty

Weather
Race: Dry; air temp 29° / track temp 31° (start), 29° / 30° (lap 30), 29° / 29° (lap 61)

Runplan

Charles Pic
Start on supersoft tyres
Lap 11: pitstop 1, medium tyres
Lap 25: pitstop 2, medium tyres
Lap 54: pitstop 3, option tyres
Finished: 19th
Fastest lap: 1.52.472 (lap 44)

Giedo van der Garde
Start on supersoft tyres
Lap 13: pitstop 1, medium tyres
Lap 26: pitstop 2, medium tyres
Lap 42: pitstop 3, medium tyres
Finished 16th
Fastest lap: 1.50.990 (lap 58)

Driver Quotes

Charles Pic, car 20, chassis CT03-#6: “Even though I finished 19th I’m not too disappointed. We tried a two-stop strategy but this time it didn’t work out – sometimes plans like that work, sometimes they don’t and this was one of those days.

“Away from the line I had a pretty good start but had to move aside to avoid Bianchi and was then stuck behind him for most of the first stint. Just before we were due to box I passed him and opened up a gap within a couple of laps so the first stop wasn’t so much of a fight. I was back out on track on a new set of mediums, clear of him and immediately started pushing on to my teammate.

“When the safety car came out I boxed early, rejoining in 19th on another set of mediums and right up with Giedo after his stop. The car felt ok at that point – the tyres were performing really well and when Giedo came in again we made the call to switch to a two stop strategy. I had a lot of laps left so I had to manage the pace so I could look after the tyres to the end but with six laps left the rears were gone so we had to come in again. My race was effectively over at that point because, even with the big pace advantage I had on the supersofts we used in the final stint I didn’t have enough laps to catch the cars ahead.”

Giedo van der Garde, car 21, chassis CT03-#4: “That was a tough race but for me a really good one – I have to say I really enjoyed myself out there tonight! Fighting with the Williams for most of the race was great, really good and I’m pleased for Tony and Kamarudin that we could put in a performance like that back in South East Asia.

“After a bit of a poor start I was past Charles, Bianchi and Bottas by the end of lap one and was up behind Sutil until the first stop. The car was absolutely great on the supersofts – my pace in the first stint was really strong, the same as the cars up to 12th and it just felt great for the whole first stint. We boxed for a set of mediums on lap 12 and rejoined in 18th, still ahead of Bottas who was on supersofts for the second stint. With the pace advantage that compound has here there wasn’t a lot I could do to hold him off and he passed me about three laps later.

“When the safety car came out we boxed for another set of mediums and after the race restarted my pace was good again. I was right up with Bottas and then passed him again when he went off a couple of laps into the stint. As the fuel levels dropped he got past me again so we focused on catching Charles who had stayed out on a two-stop plan. With a long final stint he was managing his tyres and I was catching him at about two seconds a lap, and just before he had to make the final stop I passed him and then held 16th to the flag.

“As I say, it’s good to have had a strong race here and I’m pleased for the whole team that we could fight with Williams for a lot of the race. I’m now staying out in the Far East for a break before Korea and even though tonight’s race was tough physically I’m already looking forward to getting back in the car.”

Red Bull Qualifying Singapore Grand Prix 2013

December 31, 2013

 

Saturday 21 September 2013

SINGAPORE GP – QUALIFYING

 Car 1 SEBASTIAN VETTEL, Position: POLE POSITION, (3rd Practice – P1, 1:44.173)

“It was a strange feeling at the end of Q3. It’s already strange when you stand in the garage with only two minutes left in the session, but much worse when you see the others making their final attempt and there’s nothing you can do! I was watching the sector times closely with Romain, Nico and Mark in particular. Mark started with a purple time in sector one, then Nico went purple in sector two and then Romain, but fortunately my last sector was fast enough to just stay ahead. It’s a great feeling as it could have gone wrong, but I’m very happy with the result. The car has been phenomenal all weekend. Yesterday the gap to the front was a bit of a surprise, but today was a bit more what we expected with the Mercedes being so close.”

 Car 2 MARK WEBBER, Position: 4th, (3rd Practice – P4, 1:44.906)

“I’m a bit disappointed to be fourth. It’s quite tight and there were some good lap times being set. We’re on the second row, it would have been better to have been on the front row, but it’s a long race tomorrow and we can do something from there. We’ve got a very good race car. It washard to match Seb in the last sector; he’s always been strong in Turns 20 and 21.”

 CHRISTIAN HORNER: “A really impressive performance from Sebastian today. Having been quick in P1 on the prime tyre, fast in Q2 on the softer tyre and setting an incredible first lap that put him 0.6 seconds clear in Q3, we elected to take a strategic approach to tomorrow and not do the second run to save a new set of soft tyres. In the end it was very tight with Nico, but once you’ve made your decision you’re committed. Mark was tremendously quick in Q1 on the harder tyres, which he’s been fast on all weekend. He progressed through Q2 with no issue and in Q3, despite going purple in the first sector, he just missed out on the clean side of the grid. But, nonetheless first and fourth is a great place to start tomorrow’s race.”

 (Renault) THIERRY SALVI: “Sebastian took a risk sitting out the last lap, but nevertheless got pole doing only one run in Q3! The car was strong today and has worked particularly well on this city track, which features a lot of low speed corners where drivability and engine response are key. Pole in Singapore is very important on a track where overtaking is difficult.”

 ******************************************************

 PRESSURE POINTS

 From the outside it might seem that all the stress of a race weekend is at the race start, but the truth is that moments of intense pressure strike different team members at different times. Here, Mark’s race engineer, Simon Rennie, explains why, for him, it’s the 120 minutes between final practice and qualifying that are most demanding…

 Simon: “It’s the most critical part for us because we’ve got just two hours to use the experience gained from FP3 to work out how to put our best forward in qualifying. We debrief the drivers, work out what we’re going to do with the set-up, talk about the strategy, because obviously race strategy starts in qualifying. When we know what we’re doing all that information is passed on to the mechanics and the guys who look after the tyres.

 “By the time we’ve finished debriefing the driver that might use up 35 or 40 minutes so there’s only an hour and a quarter to go and the mechanics need to know what they need to change in good time because they physically have to make those changes before quali. There are a lot of things that require checking and planning and it all happens very, very quickly. You have to prepared and that’s not easy. Normally we end up working to the curfew on Friday, so you have make sure you sleep as much as possible after that. In the morning you have to have a good breakfast. It sounds obvious but there’s not a lot of time to eat between FP3 and quali because there’s so much work to do so you need to be fuelled up well in advance.”

McLaren Qualifying Singapore Grand Prix 2013

December 30, 2013

2013 SINGAPORE GRAND PRIX – QUALIFYING

 Marina Bay Circuit, Saturday September 21

 “It’s always a very tough race here, but that’s what we do all the training for”

 JENSON BUTTON

MP4-28A-04

FP3

9th                            1m45.890s (+1.717s) 13 laps

 Qualifying

Q1 2nd                     1m45.009s (on Options)

Q2 10th                    1m44.497s (on Options)

Q3 8th overall         1m44.282s (on Options)

 “The car felt okay and I’d say it was a reasonable qualifying session for us. There’s still quite a bit of progress to be made, but we’ve been doing a lot of set-up work this weekend to improve the car and I’m happy about that.

 “We’ll see what we can do tomorrow, so as to make the best of where we are. It’s likely to be an exciting race because the tyres are working in a very unusual way. As a result there are going to be a lot of different strategies, so it’ll be interesting to see how everyone get on.

 “It’s going to be difficult to overtake the cars in front of us, but we’ll see what we can do. Having said that, I’m really looking forward to it. It’s always a very tough race here, but that’s what we do all the training for.”

 SERGIO PEREZ

MP4-28A-03

FP3  7th                                          1m45.500s (+1.327s) 12 laps

 Qualifying

Q1 4th                      1m45.164s (on Options)

Q2 14th overall         1m44.752s (on Options)

 “That was quite a disappointing qualifying session for me.

 “I think today we should have made it through to Q3. Basically, when the track got better in Q2, I just couldn’t improve my time. The rear felt quite loose and I therefore found it difficult to maximise the full potential of the car. I think the changes we did after P3 didn’t help, and I probably lost a bit there. Also in my out-lap I had quite a bit of traffic which didn’t help either. To lose two-tenths here is very easy – and today we did it.

 “As a result, it’s not going to be one of the easiest races out there for me tomorrow, starting from P14. It’ll be difficult for me to overtake, so we need a good strategy and good pace throughout the race. But not everything is lost: we’ve seen in the past that anything can happen here and there’s a big difference between the Prime and the Option so we’ll see what effect that has from a strategy point of view.

 “Obviously, our aim is to score some points.”

 MARTIN WHITMARSH

Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

“Jenson delivered a typically strong and fault-free performance to qualify about as well as we felt our car was capable of qualifying here this evening.

 “Checo, meanwhile, is naturally frustrated not to have made it through to Q3. It’s a tricky circuit and an unforgiving qualifying format, though – so, with so many cars so close to one another in terms of pace, it’s all too easy not to make the Q3 cut.

 “Having said that, both Jenson and Checo have shown themselves in many races this year to be well capable of fighting their way through the field from less than stellar grid slots to solid points finishes by flag-fall, and I have no doubt whatsoever that that’s what they’ll both be trying their damnedest to do when the five red lights go out on the Marina Bay starting gantry tomorrow evening.”

Caterham Qualifying Singapore Grand Prix 2013

December 30, 2013

Header 5

 

SINGAPORE GRAND PRIX – FP3 & QUALIFYING

Marina Bay Street Circuit, Singapore – 21st September 2013  

Caterham F1 Team Partner information
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Weather
FP3: Dry; min / max track temp 34° – 32°, air temp 30° – 29°
Q1: Dry; min / max track temp 31°, air temp 29°

Fastest laps / positions:
FP3: VDG 1.48.931, 19th / PIC 1.49.037, 20th
Q1: PIC 1.48.111, 19th / VDG 1.48.320, 20th

Total laps:
FP3: VDG 17 / PIC 18
Q1: PIC 6 / VDG 6

Runplan

Charles Pic, car #20, chassis CT03-06

FP3
1802 – 1816: Run 1, 7 laps (medium tyres)
Changes: rear ride height, front wing flap angle
1826 – 1839: Run 2, 6 laps (medium tyres)
Changes: front / rear ride height, front wing flap angle
1852 – 1902: Run 3, 5 laps (supersoft tyres)

Q1
2106 – 2113: Run 1, 3 laps (supersoft tyres)
Changes: front wing flap angle
2116 – 2122: Run 2, 3 laps (supersoft tyres)

Giedo van der Garde, car #21, chassis CT03-04

FP3
1803 – 1818: Run 1, 7 laps (medium tyres)
Changes: front / rear ride height
1826 – 1838: Run 2, 6 laps (medium tyres)
Changes: front / rear ride height, front wing flap angle
1851 – 1900: Run 3, 4 laps (supersoft tyres)

Q1
2106 – 2112: Run 1, 3 laps (supersoft tyres)
Changes: front wing flap angle
2116 – 2122: Run 2, 3 laps (supersoft tyres)

Driver quotes

Charles Pic: “We made a number of changes overnight for FP3 but on the first run it felt like we’d gone too much to the rear with the balance so the car felt unstable. We’d gone from predominantly understeer on Friday to too much oversteer on Saturday and even though the aero balance improved throughout the session the mechanical balance was still too much rearwards.

“In quali we waited for the first batch of cars to head out and then went for the first run on a new set of supersofts. The balance still wasn’t right, now the car had gone back to understeer but in the end the first run was ok and with the way the car was behaving I probably couldn’t have found too much more in qualifying. The good thing is that we have around seven tenths advantage over the Marussias and that’s good for us in the race as it means we can look at the fight ahead, not back. I’m looking forward to tomorrow as it’ll definitely be exciting and with the number of safety cars there’s been here over the years anything could happen.”

Giedo van der Garde: “FP3 wasn’t too bad – we definitely made some progress from Friday and even though there was still some of the understeer and front locking we’d had in FP1 and FP2 the car felt better. By the performance run at the end of the session I was pretty happy with where we’d got to so I was reasonably confident for qualifying.

“In Q1 we went for two runs on supersofts of one flying lap each. My first run was ok but I had a bit of traffic so I knew there was more time to come. On my second run I was pushing hard and just touched the wall which cost me a little bit of time, but overall I guess where we finished is ok. The main thing for the team is the gap we have to the cars behind so now it’s all about the race, making sure we avoid any problems and be there to take advantage of anything that comes our way.”

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