Williams team and drivers review the opening day of the Malaysian Grand Prix weekend, Round 2 of the 2014 Formula 1 world championship, at Sepang International Circuit:
Rod Nelson, Chief Test & Support Engineer: Like most teams we were concentrating on tyre degradation and tyre temperatures today, and we managed to collect a lot of good information on these elements and know what we need to do for Qualifying and the Race. We also made a few chassis changes between FP1 and FP2 which have looked successful. It’s looking very tight at the top, with only three and a half tenths separating the top six, so it won’t take much for our drivers to move up. Valtteri had a yellow flag on his first timed lap on his Medium tyres and didn’t have a clean run on his second attempt, so there is more pace to come. We have had some good feedback from the drivers who have given us a clear direction on where we need to make improvements so I’m pleased with how today has gone.
Felipe Massa: We completed our run plan and we had no technical issues, so today was a good opportunity to learn more about the performance of the car. It was pretty hot so we could also understand more about how the tyres are working in high temperatures. We managed to do long runs on different types of tyre which has been very useful and the car was performing solidly. There is still more performance to unlock from the car, so we need to work hard tonight analysing the data we have to make some improvements for qualifying and the race.
Valtteri Bottas: We tried many things with the car today and collected a lot of data on the long runs so on the whole it has been a good day. One challenge has been the difference in pace between the prime and the option tyre. The prime was sliding quite a lot and wearing out, so that will be something to watch out for over the weekend. I didn’t have the best lap on my final run on the option tyres, so like most people we still have some more speed to come tomorrow. The car still needs more downforce, particularly in the high speed corners, but we have our own strengths and our top speed is looking strong which is always good in the race.
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