Fernando Alonso drove "like an animal" to claim P13, while Antonio Giovinazzi crashed out at the bitter end of Q1.
Kevin Magnussen: “I’m fairly happy. We were about half-a-tenth from Q3 and that’s the best qualifying I’ve had for a while. I can’t be unhappy with that. It’s obviously a little bit annoying not to get through when the margin is so small, but the lap wasn’t bad, so it is what it is. I think the car is competitive, especially in race conditions. It’s a good car. If it’s raining, we have no idea how it’s going to be. We’ll see how it goes.”
Romain Grosjean: “The first lap was looking good in qualifying, then I spun on the last corner for some unexpected reason. We need to look if I went a bit too hard on throttle on the exit. The second lap was actually really good. I was aiming for P10, but Giovinazzi crashed at the last corner and I couldn’t complete my lap. It’s just hard luck. I wasn’t so happy with the car this morning in FP3. We struggled a little bit, but we made some gains with changes over lunch. As I said, the car was going to be P10, so we weren’t far off chasing Q3. It was looking all good, but then I couldn’t do the lap. Tomorrow’s going to be a long race. We know the tire degradation will be a huge thing here in the rain, and it should rain. It’s a white piece of paper to start.”
Fernando Alonso:“I think I extracted the maximum from the car today – I was flat-out and pushed like an animal. We were pessimistic going into qualifying, after our FP3 performance had been very uncompetitive and we’d felt we had nothing left, but in quali the car picked up some pace and we were able to make it into Q2 and get 13th, which was a nice surprise.
“For tomorrow’s race, the expected rain will help us, since in dry conditions it would be difficult to score points, but in wet conditions anything could happen. We need some chaos in the race, basically. We’ve raced here in those conditions in the past so we have to use that experience and take any opportunity that opens up in front of us.
“If it rains it will be a good race to watch for the fans: they’ll enjoy it and for us it’ll be fun too – if we can take our chances.”
Stoffel Vandoorne: “After practice this morning I felt quite comfortable in the car, but unfortunately it took a bit longer than expected to get out onto the track for Q1, so we had a bit of a delay and had to rush through our programme. I’m a bit disappointed as I felt the chance was definitely there to get into Q2. Having more mileage yesterday would have probably been useful today also – it always helps when you know the track a bit better – but I think our pace this morning was pretty good straight away, so we’ll see what we can do tomorrow.
“We’re both pushing quite hard and it’s normal to try different things on track to be able to extract the maximum out of the car. Today wasn’t an ideal session but every kilometre here for me is valuable, so I’m learning a lot with every lap I do. We experienced very variable conditions today – I did one run in the wet yesterday and today was completely dry – but in general I’ve felt pretty comfortable right from the beginning of the weekend.
“Yesterday wasn’t much of a show, and the conditions are expected to be wet again tomorrow, but we’ll see. A bit of a mix-up of weather conditions will always be good for us at the moment, so let’s see what happens in the race. If it rains again tomorrow, it’ll mix everything up for everyone, so there could be some good opportunities for us, and we intend to make the most of them.”
Marcus Ericsson: “First of all, I went to the track with very mixed feelings today, after what happened yesterday in Stockholm – terrible news. Regarding our performance, we should be satisfied with the qualifying result today. FP3 was a productive session with a busy schedule, focusing on qualifying and race preparation, after almost no running yesterday. I put in a good lap time in Q1, which again took me into Q2. P14 is an interesting starting place for the race.”
Antonio Giovinazzi: “For me it was a disappointing ending to qualifying. It was all good until the last corner of my final lap. I was already in Q2 and improving my lap time, but I pushed a bit too much, touched the grass in the exit of the last corner and then lost the rear of the car. I apologize to the team for what happened. Tomorrow I will do my best to put in a good performance.”