Sat: Sauber, McLaren, Manor

Date published: April 18 2015

Fernando Alonso made it through to Q2, but Jenson Button never got going in Q1 while Manor also dropped out at the first time of asking.

McLaren
Fernando Alonso:
"This weekend has been a nice surprise so far – and the car felt better again today. We’ve made a step forward, performance-wise; everything appears to be going in the right direction. Of course, we’ll never be happy that our qualifying effort ran out in Q2, but it’s a step forward, and the whole team will and should enjoy this result because they’ve been working so hard to achieve it. Tomorrow will be about finishing the race and getting both cars to the flag. We’ve had some problems with reliability this weekend, with Jenson’s car, so we need to keep improving in that area. We’ll need a bit of luck if we’re to score points tomorrow."

Jenson Button: "Well, FP3 was pretty good, especially after yesterday’s limited running. And then, in quali, I don’t really know what happened; it felt a bit similar to what occurred on Friday morning when everything shut down on the car. There was a loud bang, so I pulled over and got out. We’ve had quite a few issues this weekend, but the important thing is that we’re improving. Fernando got through to Q2, which is a good step for the team, and it’s just a pity I couldn’t be there as well. We knew it was going to be a hard start to the year, and it has been, but, even so, there are more positives than we thought there would be. Looking ahead to tomorrow, our race pace is likely to be not too bad. So hopefully we can sort out our reliability glitches ahead of tomorrow and have a decent race."

Sauber
Felipe Nasr:
"It was a shame to just miss out on Q3 because of less than a tenth, but I think we extracted the maximum out of the car. It was difficult in Q1 as some of our competitors seem to be very strong. Twelfth is a good starting position for tomorrow. Considering our good pace during the long-runs, I am confident about fighting for points."

Marcus Ericsson: "First of all, FP3 was a difficult session. I struggled a lot to get a good feeling in the car and it was quite windy on track. Towards the end of the session we managed to sort things out and drivingwise it felt better. In Qualifying we knew beforehand it would be a close competition. Certainly, we would have liked to be in Q3 again, but overall we did a decent job. We are in good shape for tomorrow’s race."

Manor
Will Stevens:
"The weekend has been pretty solid for us. The conditions have been a little up and down due to the changing wind and also the track has been pretty dusty due to heavy overnight winds. I think we worked pretty well over the past couple of days to manage the differences and by qualifying we had a pretty good balance. I think there was a little bit more in the car today as I made a small mistake in turn 12, but it feels good for the race so I’m excited to see how we fare tomorrow."

Roberto Merhi: "I’m a little disappointed with my lap as I made a mistake later at turn 4 and that stopped me improving on my second run. Otherwise, I think we can feel happy with the progress we’ve made through the weekend, especially as the track conditions have been evolving so much. The car is in a good place for tomorrow, so I’m looking forward to the race."