Mexico City: Team India Friday report

A1 Team India out on track for practice in Mexico Narain Karthikeyan took part in the opening sessions of the A1GP Mexico City, Mexico today, around the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez circuit. The weather was hot and sunny for A1 Team India's...

A1 Team India out on track for practice in Mexico

Narain Karthikeyan took part in the opening sessions of the A1GP Mexico City, Mexico today, around the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez circuit. The weather was hot and sunny for A1 Team India's first visit to the capital city. Karthikeyan took to the Mexican track for two practice sessions this morning, to get his first taste of the bumpy and challenging circuit, and set the fifth fastest time. After making set up changes for the afternoon session, the team moved to within eighth tenths of the quickest time.

Speaking about his day, Karthikeyan commented, "Fundamentally, something seems to be wrong with the car. We're not using my tub, after the crack we discovered in Durban, so that could be causing us a problem. The team will strip the car this afternoon; to make sure everything is put together and working properly.

"We made a few changes to the set up after the first session, including altering the gear ratios, which has helped. We were about one and half seconds off the pace this morning, which came down to about eight tenths this afternoon. But there's still a lot of room for improvement.

"It's a very technical circuit, very bumpy. Surprisingly, the times are very close, despite being just eight tenths from the fastest time this afternoon, we're down in 13th place. Apart from that, the altitude here kills the engine speed, the car is quite noticeably down on power, but that is the same for everyone. "The track is very interesting, sector two is very bumpy and the car bounces around a lot, which unsettles the rear. You have to wait for the car to calm down before getting back on the power. We need to make a few changes before qualifying tomorrow, and work our way back to the front."

A1 Team India Seatholder Yohann Setna added, "We're still searching for the right set up, we made a few changes during the second session. The rear of the car is not sitting quite right, Narain is suffering from a lot of roll oversteer. But I think we've made some good progress this afternoon. We did a good lap at the start of the session, obviously because we were on new tyres, but as the tyres got older through the session, it became more difficult.

"The front of the car has been pretty good all day, we just need to make a few changes to the rear to make that work, especially through the esses in sector two, which is where we seem to be losing a bit of time. In the morning we were about 8km down on the main straights, so we made a few changes to the gear ratios, which seems to have worked. Narain and the team will now discuss what changes need to be made ahead of tomorrow, but I think we know what direction we need to go in."

A1 Team India will be back on track for a final practice session tomorrow morning, before the four segment qualifying session in the afternoon.

-credit: team india

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Series A1GP