Jules Bianchi and Max Chilton delivered another two car finish for the Marussia F1 Team in Spa today, but it was not the race the team had hoped for after such a positive wet qualifying session yesterday, in which they made it through to Q2. In a dry race it was always going to be a tough battle for them to retain their grid positions, or thereabouts, and this afternoon they ended the 2013 Belgian Grand Prix in 18th and 19th positions.
Having lined up side by side on the eighth row, both drivers lost places at the start to emerge from the opening lap 18th (Jules) and 21st (Max). They started on the Hard tyre before switching to the Medium for the middle stint of three then back to the Hard rubber for the final stretch. Max paid an extra visit to the pit lane for a drive through penalty for a blue flag infringement.
Jules Bianchi: “It was a tough race today, made more difficult by the fact that I had a radio problem from the start. Our pace was not as good as we hoped for, which was a shame. Although it was going to be hard to hang on to our grid positions if it didn’t rain, we were looking for something more after a good result yesterday. As it remained dry we were not presented with the sort of opportunities we were hoping might come our way. However, we did get a two-car finish and also we continue to hold position in the championship, so we will now look to Monza for more of an improvement we hope.”
Max Chilton: “A long race today, not just in terms of laps and lap distance, but more the fact that the dry conditions made the race quite uneventful for us. The threat of rain meant that we had thought through and prepared for so many different scenarios, so we would be in a position to capitalise on any opportunity to move up the order, but as it turned out much of the homework was not required. So we’re disappointed with the race but encouraged by signs earlier in the weekend and I hope we can make more of those in Monza in two weeks’ time.”
John Booth, Team Principal: “A tough race today, coming on the back of such a positive day yesterday. Both drivers really suffered at the start of the race, losing position much more quickly than we expected on the opening laps. From this point in the race it was really all about trying to claim back positions but unfortunately we simply didn’t have the pace to do that. In terms of the decisions made through the race and the operation of the pit crew, there were no issues today at a race where we have brought developments in these areas. Overall we simply need to go back and regroup and attempt to extract as much performance out of the current package as possible before the next race in Monza.” (Marussia F1)
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