"IT HAS BEEN A FUN FIRST DAY"
After the first day of running what are your impressions of the Buddh International Circuit?
JA: It has been a fun first day at a brand new venue. It is always interesting coming to a new track for the first time, but it is clear straight away that Buddh is an excellent addition to the F1 calendar.
We saw a lot of track evolution through the day and it's still extremely dusty off line. With our car at least, it's shaping up to be a track with an understeer bias - quite similar to Korea in that respect - and this type of balance tends to suit the R31.
How well placed are we heading into the rest of the weekend?
JA: I do think we're headed for a solid top ten qualifying performance and based on the race simulation work we did in the afternoon we seem to have reasonable pace for the race as well.
How have the tyres performed so far?
JA: The hard tyre is a fair bit slower, and as things stand right now, I don't think anyone will be queuing up to use it as their main tyre in the race… The soft looks very nice with good life, low degradation and it's a very usable tyre.
The track itself is very good; not bumpy, and packed with interesting corners
In addition to the significant asymmetry in the performance of the tyres we have a further issue this weekend that is vexing our Strategist. He is working through the permutations to figure out the how to make the most of Vitaly's weekend given that he's got a five place penalty to serve after qualifying.
What are your impressions of the track now running has taken place?
JA: The track itself is very good; not bumpy, and packed with interesting corners, changes of elevation and with a decent main straight. It is, of course, extremely dusty. The track evolution during the two sessions was very high, although this was compounded by drivers finding their feet at a new venue.