Team and drivers report from Chinese Grand Prix qualifying at Shanghai International Circuit, Round 3 of the 2013 Formula 1 world championship.
Charles Pic: “We’ve had quite a few issues all weekend and they’ve hurt our ability to get the most out of the car here, particularly with the tyres. We tried a couple of different setup options in FP3 and the car balance felt better this morning than it had yesterday but between FP3 and qualifying the tyre behaviour changed again and we really couldn’t get them to work. In qualifying we did both runs on the soft tyres but I had traffic on my first run which meant I didn’t have a clean lap. On the second run I improved my time but I still had oversteer on the exits of most of the corners and more traffic in both sectors one and two which basically ruined that lap. Even with the package we have now we know there’s more performance in the car so days like today are frustrating, but we’ll just have to work harder, improve where we can and focus on putting in a good performance tomorrow.”
Giedo van der Garde: “After two productive sessions yesterday I just couldn’t get the same feeling from the car in FP3 and that carried over into qualifying. Like Charles, I’ve had quite a few small problems in each session and together they’ve held us back quite a bit. We’re struggling to understand the tyre behaviour here and when the track temps went up today it was like having to start again with our understanding of how to get them working. My final position in quali is obviously disappointing, particularly as I made a mistake in turn two on my second run, pushing too hard into the corner and that cost me about four tenths. Without that I’d have finished a bit higher up the grid but now we have to focus on tomorrow’s race and aim for the same sort of performance we put in at the last race in Malaysia.”