Qualy quotes: Renault, Force India, Haas, Toro Rosso

Date published: June 9 2018

Renault responded to a poor Friday with both drivers inside the top 10; Romain Grosjean suffers engine blow-out in pit lane.

Renault

Nico Hulkenberg: “I’m satisfied with that today. I felt a little on the back foot heading into qualifying due to the lack of running yesterday, but I’ve been confident in the car all weekend. I think we did the best we could in terms of position. There was probably more in me and a couple more tenths out there to extract in Q3. We have the top speed and a generally good package with the high fuel runs yesterday, so we’ll be there to fight and pick up positions tomorrow.”

Carlos Sainz: “I’m quite happy with how things have gone today. This Q3 is definitely thanks to all our mechanics for sorting the car out and completing an amazing change on my turbo to help me get out in qualifying. It was a great job by the whole team. For tomorrow we have good pace but it’ll be a tough race, especially starting on the Hypersoft tyre, but we’ll be pushing flat out to have both cars in the top ten.”

Force India

Esteban Ocon: “I’m happy to finish in eighth today. I had a fantastic feeling with the car and we’ve been getting better with each session. The work last night and in final practice really paid off and we took big steps forward in the build-up to qualifying. So I have to say a big ‘thank you’ to the team because we are really making good progress with this car. I think there is all to play for tomorrow: we are often stronger with race pace so the job tomorrow is to try and get ahead of Hulkenberg and bring home some big points.”

Sergio Perez: “I’m a bit disappointed to have finished behind the Renaults, but I am still confident we can fight with them tomorrow. Our set-up was completely geared towards the race and I felt it was very difficult to deliver a clean flying lap. Tomorrow, however, we should have an advantage and the opportunity to score good points. The first stint will be very important: degradation is quite high around here and we need to make sure we manage the hypersoft and don’t have to pit too early. The cars starting outside the top ten will be on a better tyre compound and we’ll need to fight them off if we want our strategy to work. This is what we’ve been working for and hopefully tomorrow it will work in our favour.”

Haas

Kevin Magnussen: “We brought an upgrade here and we hoped that would improve the car, and it looks like it has. This kind of track – we knew it was going to be difficult here. We put this upgrade on and, of course, it’s difficult to see as we’re not as quick as we were in Barcelona, where we were dominating that midfield. I think without the upgrade we’d have been a lot worse here. Low speed tracks are our weak point, but I’m happy that, so far, we’ve been able to limit the damage. I think we can attack tomorrow. Our race pace, if anything, is better than our qualifying pace, and we’re starting with a free choice of tire in P11 – that’s probably a better position to be in than P10 and P9. We’re going to fight.”

Romain Grosjean: “Something went wrong. Maybe the beaver from yesterday was still in there somewhere. Seriously though, we laugh about it as it’s been a terrible series of luck since the first race of the season. We’ve had some really tough luck. Anyway, the feeling in the car was really good since FP1. I was very happy with the upgrade. Kevin was improving and getting better in qualifying, which is great for the team. Starting last is never ideal, but it’s one of those racetracks where you can overtake, so luckily it’s not Monaco. I think everyone starting on hypersofts is going to suffer from the degradation, especially if it’s warm. We’re going to try something different. There are a lot of cars to get around. A good safety car, some luck at a good time, and we could be up there.”

Toro Rosso

Brendon Hartley: “I was really happy with the job I did today, and how we’ve worked as a team throughout the weekend to get the car in the right place. I think 12th was more or less where we’ve been this weekend, there was probably another tenth in the car on that last lap, but to move much further up the grid and into Q3 was a bit of a tall order today. I’ve really enjoyed driving the track here, it’s got a lot of character, bumps, kerbs, you’re close to the walls… I felt strong all weekend in Monaco as well but Q1 was a bit of a mess and we missed Q2, so it was nice to get a better result in Montreal. I’m quite optimistic for tomorrow! The upgrade performance in qualifying was good, and we think the bigger step is in the race trim which is where we have been struggling recently. Hopefully we can battle it out and try to muscle our way into the top 10 – everything has been really positive so far and we’ve seen races in the past here where a lot can happen, so I’ll keep focussed and do my best to bring home some points.”

Pierre Gasly: “We were quite unlucky today, everything looked promising until FP3 where we had an issue with the power unit, so we changed back to an old version. Unfortunately, at a track like Canada where we know the straight line speed is really important, it cost us quite a bit. It made qualifying quite tough, and of course it’s always frustrating to miss out on Q2 with such a small margin. Looking at the positives, Honda made a really good step with the updates they brought to Canada which seems to work very well so far, I can’t wait to put them back on my car as soon as possible! I think tomorrow will be a tough day… but we’ll try everything! Anything can happen in Canada, it’s a challenging track and it’s easy to make mistakes, so maybe there’ll be some opportunities for me.”