Marussia may not have been on the pace but at least their first day of the season was not as bad as Lotus' and Caterham's.
Jules Bianchi: "First of all, it's great to be back racing and at the place where it all began 12 months ago. Things are quite different this time around though and we expected quite a difficult day today. FP1 was indeed quite challenging as we worked to resolve some software problems, but this afternoon was a much better story and we were able to start digging a bit deeper in terms of race preparation and testing the reliability of the car, the outcome of which was quite promising. We also saw some encouraging signs from the low fuel simulation that we completed. There is a lot of work to do to try to understand the progress and also to evaluate the new developments we have for this weekend. Not a bad start and I'm quite happy."
Max Chilton: "The first two sessions have been a little like night and day in that we've had a really positive FP2 compared to the issues we experienced earlier. The second session was not entirely trouble free and we had to make some adjustments to get the car to my liking, but at least we got a good rhythm going and were able to put some proper laps on the car, which we really needed for evaluation. We are still just scratching the surface and there is a lot we can do to improve the car for here and the forthcoming races, but it's a car I feel confident with and that we can develop, so I'm feeling positive."
Romain Grosjean: "If we take the positives we can say that we've completed a few practice starts, and we've proven that Renault have done a good job from the laps we completed. It's certain that we have a lot of work ahead and we still need to learn the tyres, the brakes and find a good setup. We're taking a few steps every time we go out in the car and for sure we'll get where we want to be."
Pastor Maldonado: "I'm feeling really ready for tomorrow. I spent a lot of today waiting to get in the car as we had some problems, which I think are still normal to have so early in the season with these new cars. It was clear that we're not the only ones to suffer on track and we have to work very hard, and maybe harder than the others, to try to catch up and be ready for tomorrow. We need to sit down with the engineers and re-plan our strategy for free practice."
Marcus Ericsson: "That was a more difficult start to my first full Grand Prix weekend than I'd have liked, but hopefully that means we've got all the problems out of the way on day one! This morning it was an electrical issue with the engine that meant I only did one lap - out on the main straight the power suddenly dropped but I was still able to get the car back to the pits and when we had a look at it we found it was an electrical problem so that was fixed over lunch. In the afternoon we were back out at the start of FP2 but this time, when I boxed, there was a hydraulics leak. A bit like with Kamui's car, fixing anything like this under the engine cover takes a lot longer than it used to with the old engines, so that was the end of the session for me and more work for the boys. Despite that I'm still very positive. Even with the good reliability we built up in Bahrain, we still came here knowing it could be a difficult weekend and I know I have to just stay focused on doing the best job I can when the car's running as it should. There's a lot of work ahead of us but we'll do whatever we can to be back on track tomorrow and when it's all fixed I'm ready."
Kamui Kobayashi: "One lap in both practice sessions is obviously not a good way to start the season, particularly after our reliability had been good in the Bahrain tests, but we know what the problems are on side and we're all working very hard to fix them for tomorrow. The problem on my car was to do with the fuel system - it was fine on the installation lap but when I boxed we had a small fire under the engine cover which came from a fuel system leak. The fire was out immediately but when we'd found the problem we knew it couldn't be fixed in time to run in FP2 so made the decision to remove the Power Unit so we could fix the issue and aim to run properly tomorrow. Despite how the weekend has started I'm still pretty positive about what could happen tomorrow and on Sunday. We might be a small team but everyone works as hard as anyone else in the pitlane and if we can get back to the Bahrain test reliability levels I think we can still have a good weekend."
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