2011 Spanish GP, practice: Team quotes 

Written by David on May 20th, 2011 at 6:24 pmLast Update: May 20th, 2011 at 7:41 pm

Sam Michael: “We went through all of our programme today which included running the new aero parts on both cars at various stages. We have plenty of data to look at tonight to finalise the specification that we’ll race this weekend. Some parts of the floor are certainly on the limit, so we’ll take that into consideration. We didn’t have any reliability issues today.”

Martin Whitmarsh: “For this morning’s session, we deliberately followed separate programmes on each car to ensure we could log as much data as possible with our planned upgrades. We limited running to the same fuel-load and the same tyres for the entirety of the session, and also ran without DRS; that meant that our times throughout P1 were not particularly representative. However, we logged a significant amount of positive data and were able to merge our two divergent development paths into a singular programme for this afternoon – with encouraging results. While neither Lewis nor Jenson were completely happy with the balance of their cars, it seems as if we’ve made some positive progress. Inevitably, we still have a significant amount of data to sift through this evening, but we feel confident that we can take a further step in the right direction for tomorrow. All in all, a positive day.”

Thierry Salvi: “In FP1 we struggled a bit with Jarno as we had a couple of mechanical issues which needed to be resolved during the session. That cut into the program but we redoubled our efforts in FP2 and have had some good feedback from both drivers, especially from Jarno on the new package overall. We have generated a great deal of data from the mileage we completed today so we will analyse that and look to implement it in FP3 and qualifying tomorrow .”

Mike Gascoyne: “That was a very interesting and useful day, and good to put so many laps on the new package. As we expected the behaviour of the car is now quite different to what we have been working with so far this season and it will take a lot of fine tuning to get the best out of all the improvements, but I think that on the soft tyre and the longer runs we could clearly see some of the improvements we were aiming for. There are obviously areas we need to focus on, but those can all be dialled out, so all in all this has been a good day with the new package, well done to the whole team for working hard to get it all working so well on the car on its debut and I am sure there is much more to come .”

Tony Fernandes: “I always thought it would take some time for us to maximise the potential of the updates we have applied here, especially for the drivers who have basically a new rear end of the car to get to grips with. However, I am very happy with the mileage we have accumulated today and the fact we are faster than we have been before. I cannot remember a Friday when we have run so many laps and that has given us a lot of very useful data for Marianne and her team to work on in the wind-tunnel. We clearly performed very well on the options, maybe not so well on the primes, but for me, even though I am not a veteran of this sport, I knew it would take time to integrate the updates so I keep realistic goals and know that we will keep working hard and moving forward step by step.”

Dominic Harlow: “On the whole we had good weather conditions here in Barcelona apart from a bit more wind than we would have liked and that looks set to continue for the weekend. Our programme concentrated on aero development and we were able to make some very useful comparisons. Once we’ve had an opportunity to review all the data we will draw conclusions that will take us forward. The grip level was quite low in the morning and only began to improve at the end of FP2. There was a minor telemetry issue with Adrian’s car and that meant he was hampered by traffic during his final outing on new soft tyres, and of course he lost a bit of track time. Otherwise it was a reliable introduction of quite a few new components, which is always pleasing, but we’ve some work to do overnight to improve our performance for qualifying.”

James Key: “It has been a busy day for the team with a lot of new parts on the car to evaluate and check, but it has been positive and the team has done a really good job. In FP1 we ran the new aero package on both cars, and Kamui ran the outboard exhaust, which was primarily for him a session of aero assesment. We have gathered more important and interesting data for the exhaust, but we are not quite sure yet if we are ready to run this. Otherwise the rest of the package is working pretty well. There have been no major issues, we see a general improvement in grip level and the drivers have been okay with the balance that they are feeling with all the new parts. We have also carried on with the mechanical updates we made in Turkey, taking them a little bit further here. As far as the new parts are concerned, generally it has been pretty positive. The pace looks okay, but clearly it is all so very close and we are not a hundred per cent with the total balance of the car in these track conditions. It is quite hot and at the moment we need to adapt the car a little bit for the conditions to get the balance better, particularly on new tyres. Now we have to work over night to make the most of tomorrow.”

Ross Brawn: “We have a number of new items on the car here which we wanted to evaluate today, and we have successfully achieved that. It was a pretty comprehensive programme and, as always, we will piece together all of the data tonight, and decide how we will approach the rest of the weekend. We’ve got to find some performance on the car, but today was a reasonable start.”

Norbert Haug: “A first day with a total of 126 laps for Michael and Nico gave us the opportunity to learn a lot about the new prime tyre which has not been tested before at this track. At the beginning, it looked difficult to make this tyre work for most of the teams, however we have learned a lot today which will be useful to get the set-up of our cars right tomorrow and on Sunday. Our target for the rest of the weekend is to again be in the top five as at the last two races.”

John Booth: “As a result of our recent straight-line test, we decided to run a split programme whereby Timo would run with the new aero package and work on engine mappings and diffuser setup with Jérôme focusing solely on tyres due to the new Hard compound we have here in Spain. It looks to have less degradation than the previous version although initial lap times with it aren’t as good. That should again provide for an interesting race with a variety of strategy options. Overnight, we’ll be looking at the data and comparing the two exhaust and diffuser packages, as well as making a careful check of the components. We’ll then decide which specification to put on the car. The new package certainly has a lot of potential; it’s a great pity that Timo was hampered by so much traffic when he was running the Option tyre and was unable to show its true potential.”

Pat Fry: “A lot on the menu today this Friday in Montmelo and an initial reaction would be that first impressions are positive. We had a lot of new components to test: as always happens in these situations, some worked well, others less so and now it’s a case of putting together the jigsaw puzzle with the best pieces available. We also tried new aerodynamic concepts to assess how useful they might be. All in all, I think we have made progress in terms of performance, even if it is difficult to specify exactly if and by how much we have closed the gap to the quickest. The aim is to improve our performance in qualifying and also make progress in terms of our race pace, working down the same route we have taken for the past few races. It will not be easy to succeed but we are confident. Compared to what we saw in winter testing, even taking into account the fact temperatures are much higher now, tyre degradation seems very high: in fact I reckon the pit stop crew will have a lot of work to do on Sunday afternoon…”

Colin Kolles: “The timesheet doesn’t look too good today but I’m positive because I know what we have done and I think tomorrow we will see the real performance of the car. We only did long runs and were not running on low levels of fuel. We were working on race setup and concentrating on this so the times today were quite irrelevant. We had aerodynamical updates and had to evaluate them, the feedback from the drivers and engineers suggest that they’re working just fine.”

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