A good qualifying for Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro, in preparation for tomorrow's British Grand Prix, when it will have one driver on the second row and the other on the fourth. Fernando was consistently the third fastest driver in all three...
A good qualifying for Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro, in preparation for tomorrow's British Grand Prix, when it will have one driver on the second row and the other on the fourth. Fernando was consistently the third fastest driver in all three sessions, while Felipe Massa, fourth fastest in Q2, was unable to improve in the next stage and had to settle for seventh place, which nevertheless will see him start from the cleaner side of the grid. "We can be reasonably satisfied with today's outcome," commented Stefano Domenicali. "Fernando had a great qualifying, getting all the potential out of the car. A shame for Felipe, who could have finished higher, although his chances of having a good race are still intact. Looking to tomorrow, clearly our aim is to get a podium finish. We start behind what looks like the untouchable Red Bulls, but several times this year we have seen our car prove to be more competitive in the race than in qualifying. It will be important to get a good start and, as usual in fact, reliability remains the key factor. Usually in qualifying, you see all the potential in terms of performance and for us it is encouraging to see that on a track whose characteristics definitely do not favour our car, the extensive work of the past few weeks is reaping its rewards: now we must transform that into results."
Fernando Alonso: "We knew that at this type of circuit, the Red Bulls would be out of reach, but we managed to get ahead of the rest of the pack. We are aware we still need to up our performance level but it was important to get a positive indication and I think that, thanks to all the work we have done in the past weeks on the development of the car, we have managed to do that. On my final run, I had traffic in sector three -- I think it might have been Michael -- but even with a clear track ahead of me, I definitely would not have improved my grid position. Up until now, the weekend has gone well but now we must tackle the part that counts, the race: we must try and finish on the podium, because we need to score a lot of points. In terms of pace, we have proved to be competitive and we must try and at least put the Red Bulls under some pressure to ensure they don't have an easy time of getting the win. In two days we have seen how easy it is to lose precious time through small errors and this circuit is pretty tough on the cars. This morning's problem? There was a slight water leak because of a problem with a pipe, but it was all fixed in the break before qualifying."
Felipe Massa: "I am pleased with the performance of my car which was competitive today. Unfortunately, I always struggled a lot in terms of getting grip from the tyres on the first lap on a new set, as was especially obvious in Q3. I would say that here we saw the same situation that arose in Melbourne and to a greater extent in Barcelona. A shame, as I could have got a better result. I remain very confident for the race: yesterday, when we had a heavy fuel load on board, we managed to maintain a good pace and I hope that tomorrow, it will be even better. I plan to make up some places compared to my grid position, although I am aware it will not be easy. Despite the modifications, in my opinion, the track does not produce many overtaking opportunities: let's see what we can do."
Chris Dyer: "We had a few minor problems this morning on Fernando's car, because of a water loss: it was down to a leaking pipe which was promptly repaired, but it meant our Spanish driver was unable to try the soft tyres before qualifying. In any case, it would not have changed much in terms of his grid position. Fernando did a great job, getting the maximum out of his car, while Felipe was unable to do the same, mainly because of a lack of grip: a shame as maybe he could have been a few places higher up the order. We knew the Red Bulls would be strong here, but we are happy to be ahead of our other rivals. Both drivers start from the clean side of the track and so we hope to be able to make up some places at the start and then make the most of our race pace and maybe improve still further through strategy and how we carry out the pit stops. From what we saw yesterday, we should not have any problems with the tyres, neither the hard nor the soft."