Marussia: All in all, a very frustrating day

Jul.7 (Marussia Press Release) The second day of running for the British Grand Prix weekend got off to a difficult start for the Marussia F1 Team at Silverstone today. This morning, drivers Timo Glock and Charles Pic were exploring a wet-dry compromise for the changeable conditions likely to stick around at Silverstone, when Charles suffered first a fuel pick-up issue and then an electrical problem, both of which forced him to stop out on track. He completed 14 laps to end the morning in P22, just behind his team-mate Timo Glock in P21.

The team then opted to change the engine and gearbox on Charles’ car, which made for a pressured turnaround in the lunch break, but the work was completed in time for qualifying.

This afternoon, the rain showers built steadily through the Q1 session but Timo was improving to the point where it looked like a more positive end to a difficult week might have been on the cards. Unfortunately he spun on the exit of the final corner where the worsening track conditions caught him out. Charles too was pinning everything on the last lap of his second run and in the first two sectors his pace was quick, but he hit the rain at its hardest in the final sector where he was also forced to back off due to the yellow flags.

Timo Glock #24:
“A very frustrating end to a qualifying session that held so much promise for us, and which could have really lifted the team after such a difficult week. The last lap of my second run was very strong and I thought ‘Wow, we have a chance at Q2 here’. Then I came up to the Hangar Straight and I just saw this massive rain front ahead of me. The last sector was massively wet, whereas before it was very dry, and I thought ‘I can’t believe it. We’re going to lose everything.’ In the last two corners there was no grip and I just couldn’t continue the pace to keep on pulling out the gap, so in the end we ended up where we normally are position-wise. I’m disappointed for the team, but to look at the positive, we could have had a surprise result today as the car seems to be working well. We have to accept it and carry the promise through to tomorrow and see what the weather will do for us.”

Charles Pic #25:
“A very disappointing day for me. This morning we were working hard to ensure a positive result, but we experienced a fuel pick-up problem first and I was stuck on track. We managed to get the car back quite quickly which meant we could try to get back out – and we did, with 15 minutes to spare – but then soon after the car stopped again for a different reason, so there wasn’t much luck in that session. After some changes to the car in the break, with the engine and gearbox, we were building slowly towards the final run and my first two sectors were strong. Then the rain hit in the last sector and I had to slow for the Yellows which came out for Timo’s spin, so I didn’t get the chance to continue the improvement into sector 3. It’s disappointing but we have to hope for a more positive end to the week. I would like to thank the team for their great work in the lunch break today to ensure we weren’t delayed for the start of qualifying.”

John Booth, Team Principal:
“All in all, a very frustrating day for us and it seemed to all turn on the knife-edge that the weather produces here. After a tough morning we seemed to get our rhythm back for qualifying and both Timo and Charles were looking strong in their final runs. Timo in particular seemed to be enjoying a well-balanced car with the benefit of our new upgrades and was going great guns in the early part of his final lap. We could see the weather closing into the last sector and in the end it just got the better of both drivers, with Timo unfortunately spinning, but thankfully collecting it well to avoid any damage. Charles hit the same wall of rain and lost out on the chance to improve also. Disappointment aside, we do at least have some positives signs from our upgrade today, so we hope for better things tomorrow and all the fantastic support of our home crowd.”