MF1 Racing enjoyed its finest qualifying performance of the season to date, with both drivers entering the second session for the first time in the team's history. Tiago Monteiro drove the team's fastest lap of the weekend with a time...
MF1 Racing enjoyed its finest qualifying performance of the season to date, with both drivers entering the second session for the first time in the team's history.
Tiago Monteiro drove the team's fastest lap of the weekend with a time of 1:12.627 in the first session, with Christijan Albers right behind him at 1:12.711 - the 11th and 12th fastest times of the session, respectively.
In the second session, Albers and Monteiro each drove one flying lap, the Dutchman edging out his Portuguese teammate by 1/100th of a second to earn 14th position, one slot ahead of Monteiro.
"I think this is a great result for the team! We finally got both cars into the second session, and that's a major boost for everyone. After our performance in Canada, we thought we might be able to do it here but we weren't really sure."
"After our performance yesterday, we knew there was potential, so we went for it, and both cars were very competitive today. In my last run, I lost two or three tenths in the last corner that leads to the straight. The back end stepped out on me as a result of pushing so hard, but I took the risk because I thought we might even be able to get into the top ten."
"Still, it was a great day for Portugal today, both for myself and our football team, and I'm very proud to display my country's logo on my car and racing suit in the race tomorrow."
"The session may have looked good on paper, but we still have a lot of work to do for tomorrow, because tomorrow is the day that counts, not today. Today we were able to celebrate a little bit, but we don't get points for qualifying, so we have to remain focused on running a good race."
"I'm still finding it quite difficult to set quick times, to be honest. I'm not really settled with the set-up and I'm not feeling 100% comfortable yet with the car. So we need to work overnight and see what we can do, because I'm sure we can still go faster."
Colin Kolles, Managing Director:
"This is the first time we've had both our cars in front of the Red Bulls, and that's the way we'd like to have it more often. For me, the time gaps to the cars ahead are more important than grid positions, and that's also getting closer all the time. Bridgestone definitely has a good tyre for this race, but our success today can be attributed to the whole package working well, not just one component."
Dominic Harlow, Chief Race and Test Engineer:
"This was by far our best qualifying session of the year, and we're obviously very happy with that. Full credit to the mechanics and engineers who put their heads down and worked very hard to improve the car since Canada; they turned out a very good car for the sessions today."
"Both drivers did a fantastic job to make full use of the performance potential and turn in some quick laps. Race-wise, we know we've got a good tyre and we're looking forward to completing this weekend with our best race result of the season."
Johnny Herbert, Sporting Relations Manager:
"It was a very positive build-up, beginning yesterday and progressing all the way through this morning's practice sessions. The boys did a magnificent job in enabling us to get into a position where we got both cars through to the second round."
"We didn't embarrass ourselves in any way, and we didn't end up in last position in the second session, either. >From that point of view, it's extremely encouraging. Once again, a great deal of credit goes to the mechanics, engineers and the drivers for a job well done."
Qualifying: 15th, 1:12.864 (+2.032 from Pole Position lap), 3 laps
Qualifying: 14th, 1:12.854 (+2.022 from Pole Position lap), 3 laps