German GP: Renault Saturday qualifying notes

Fernando third and Fisi fourth ahead of tomorrow afternoon's German GP. The Mild Seven Renault F1 Team annexed the second row in qualifying for tomorrow's German Grand Prix this afternoon at Hockenheim. In the warmest conditions of the weekend,...

Fernando third and Fisi fourth ahead of tomorrow afternoon's German GP.

The Mild Seven Renault F1 Team annexed the second row in qualifying for tomorrow's German Grand Prix this afternoon at Hockenheim. In the warmest conditions of the weekend, with track temperatures around 34°C, the team's drivers qualified third and fourth after competitive, risk-free laps.

The R25 has shown itself to be much more competitive in race trim than on a single flying lap so far this weekend, and these positions leave both drivers with the genuine hope of podium finishes tomorrow -- and a possible fight for victory.

Fernando Alonso:

"I am pretty pleased to be third this afternoon in fact -- I could have been on the front row but it is actually quite good to be starting from the clean side of the track. I lost three or four tenths through the first corners: it was windier than this morning, and the first corner is very quick and I was a bit unsettled. Then, I didn't have the confidence to attack the braking zone at the next corner."

"I knew I was down after the first sector, and really pushed after that to make up some time, which I managed to do. We know that qualifying speed is our weak point at the moment, but the R25 is much quicker in race trim. I hope to make up a place at the start, and I am sure we have the right strategy. I want at least a podium -- and perhaps we will be able to fight for the win."

Giancarlo Fisichella:

"The conditions were a bit more difficult this afternoon because the wind had increased, which makes the car harder to predict and mistakes are easier to make. That meant I didn't do such an aggressive lap as I could have done in other circumstances."

"Having said that, the higher track temperatures definitely improved the handling of the car. Overall, this is a good result because we have chosen a good strategy for tomorrow, which should allow us to fight for the podium at the very least."

Pat Symonds, Executive Director of Engineering:

"Both drivers qualified in line with our expectations this afternoon. We knew from looking at the practice times that we would struggle to match McLaren on a single flying lap, but we are closer to them on race pace than qualifying speed. The weather predictions for tomorrow remain interesting, and at the moment there is a possibility of rain at the end of the Grand Prix. Come what may, I am confident it will be an exciting race."

Denis Chevrier, Head of Engine Operations:

"Everything is in place for an open race tomorrow. We had identified our likely competitors during practice this morning, Raikkonen and Montoya, and their sector times confirmed their speed in qualifying. On our side, we go into the race in a strong position: the car is consistent on long runs and our top speeds are competitive. Our practice work was completed without incident, and we hope to see a closely-fought race tomorrow."

Fernando Alonso: 3rd, 1:14.904
Giancarlo Fisichella: 4th, 1:14.927

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Giancarlo Fisichella , Fernando Alonso
Teams McLaren , Renault F1 Team