Fri: McLaren, FInida, Sauber, STR

Friday 12-April-2013 08:33

There were top ten times in Friday's Chinese GP practice for Jenosn Button, Adrian Sutil and Paul di Resta...

Jenson Button: "We can't yet conclusively tell if the upgrades we brought to this race have improved the car. They're perhaps not as big a step forward as we'd expected - the issues with the car are still there - but the car does feel a little bit better. We've worked very hard over the last few weeks to bring the new parts here - which is great. Today's been all about putting mileage on those parts; now we need to sit down and look at the data this evening - there's a lot to look through. I feel we'll be using the Prime tyre quite a lot in the race. The Option tyre transforms the car completely; over one lap, there's a lot more grip, but then you start to lose time over each successive lap. My puncture happened after I'd already decided to pit. I got to the braking zone at Turn 14, locked up the front left and the tyre just punctured - there was a hole through it. It's a good job that corner is just before the pits. I don't think we'll be fighting at the front this weekend, but we'll definitely be fighting someone."

Sergio Perez: "Today was a difficult day for me, but an important one for the team. I had two offs - in the morning, I was running on cold, worn tyres, locked the wheels and just touched the barrier. went into the barrier. In FP2, we don't really understand what happened because I wasn't really pushing at the time. Still, I'm sure we will improve tomorrow. I'll effectively be starting from zero because I'll adopt a completely new set-up. That won't make things easier, but I think we've gathered some useful data today and that will ensure we make good progress for the future. The target for tomorrow is to get into Q3. For Sunday, the tyres will play a big role; it'll be essential to manage the degradation and plot the perfect strategy, but I know the team is very good in these areas, so I'm optimistic. I think we can have a good result on Sunday."

Force India:
Adrian Sutil: "I'm feeling happy with how things went today. There were no major issues and we managed to test a lot of different things on the car, especially on the aero side. The important thing now is to understand which are the right parts and the best settings to use for the rest of the weekend. In terms of the tyres there is a big difference between the compounds, with the medium performing better than the soft. I think we look quite competitive, but it's too early to say exactly where we stand."

Paul di Resta: "I think the story of the day was mainly about tyres and trying to understand how to get the most out of them. We've done as much as we could, but I think everybody found quite a big difference between the two compounds. Also, this is a track with characteristics that are always quite demanding on the tyres. We worked through the programme, tried a lot of different settings with the car and need to study the data carefully tonight to make the right decisions for the rest of the weekend."

Esteban Gutierrez: "Generally the sessions were positive and helped us to understand what our issues are and to find a step forward. This is something that keeps us going and pointing us in the right direction. I think there is still a lot of room for improvement. Unfortunately, at the end of the second session we had an oil leak, which, of course, is not what you want to have. However it is good it happened now and not later in the weekend, so hopefully we will have two trouble-free days from now on."

Nico Hulkenberg: "I think overall the day wasn't too bad. We got quite a lot of testing done and pretty much got through all that we wanted to try. It is quite interesting with the tyres, and it will be a challenge on Sunday with the soft compound. It is much quicker on a single lap. The modified rear wing we have here is a step forward, and the car definitely feels a bit better with it. How much of a step this is, is difficult to say, so we have to look a little bit deeper into the data and wait until tomorrow. Overall, it was a positive day, but there is still some work ahead of us."

Toro Rosso:
Daniel Ricciardo: "We were a little bit pessimistic coming here after how we performed in this race last year. But after today, I am feeling happier, because we definitely look to be in better shape this time. Another good point is that we made progress between FP1 and FP2 today. It's still not enough if we want to catch our closest rivals, but we are moving in the right direction. As for the tyres, the Soft was very good over a single flying lap and I was quite happy with the performance advantage it produced compared to the Prime. On the longer runs the tyres suffer a bit more and there are already plenty of marbles on the track, but we always expected to see quite high degradation here."

Jean-Eric Vergne: "Last year, the Chinese weekend did not go so well for us and I can say we have made a better start this time round. Daniel and I ran slightly different programmes today as we had a lot of items on our job sheet to work through, so it made sense to split the workload between us. We will look at the data from both cars in order to find the best set-up to move forward tomorrow, so that we can have a better car. I am quite confident we can be quicker. As expected, it looks as though the tyres will have a tough time here, especially the Softs, but it's the same for everyone, so no real concern there."

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