It was a good afternoon for Sergio Perez in Monaco on Thursday as he edges the Mercedes drivers in FP2.
Sergio Perez: “Finishing in the top ten in both sessions is a good result, especially considering I am not feeling fully comfortable with the car yet. We have a lot of work to do before qualifying, but I am confident we can extract more performance and be really strong on Saturday. It hasn’t been easy to get the tyres into the right window today and this makes it very hard around a place like this where there is no margin for error. We have time tonight and tomorrow to analyse all the data and ensure we can get our set-up right for qualifying and the race.”
Esteban Ocon: “It was my first experience of Monaco from inside the cockpit and I am impressed. To be here for the first time in an F1 car is not easy, but I was able to do a good amount of laps and learn my way around the circuit. I took it step by step in the morning and felt satisfied with what we achieved. In FP2 I tried to push a bit more and I ended up brushing the walls a couple of times. Fortunately there was no significant damage and I could carry on with our programme. I am looking forward to being back in the car on Saturday and seeing where we stand in qualifying.”
Lewis Hamilton: “We didn’t have the greatest day today. Practice one was actually really good and we were quickest, but then in second practice we just struggled to extract the grip from the tyres and we were sliding around a lot. I’m not sure why the tyres weren’t working but the difference between the two sessions was night and day. We’ve got some work to do ahead of Saturday that’s for sure but I’m confident the team can work it out. Monaco is always amazing to drive, but this is definitely the best car I’ve driven around here. Ferrari are very quick again and Red Bull are also looking good this weekend. We’re looking forward to a real fight on Saturday.”
Valtteri Bottas: “Practice two was difficult and we struggled with the pace over one lap. We made some changes between practice one and practice two but we clearly went in the wrong direction – that’s why both of us were struggling. When the car isn’t quite right you lose a lot of time in Monaco. We tried to go back with the set-up and it felt better but by that point we’d already put a lot of laps into the tyres. At least we’ve learned what not to do with the set-up here. It’s a shame but we have a full day tomorrow to analyse everything and come back stronger on Saturday. It will be close again at the top I’m sure.”
Kevin Magnussen: “I’m pretty happy with the day. We got everything done that was on our program. The car’s not feeling bad, so I’m looking forward to qualifying on Saturday. It’s very fast here. It feels amazing and it’s really good fun to drive. Let’s hope we can be competitive, as well.”
Romain Grosjean:“We managed to stay out of trouble. It’s a very tight midfield. We need to get all our sectors together. I think there’s a bit of work we can do on the car to make it better. In general, though, I’m happy with the work everyone’s done. I’m looking forward to Saturday. It’s harder and more challenging to drive here, but it’s more fun.”