Adderly Fong made his debut during a Grand Prix weekend.
The first day of practice for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix went according to plan for the Sauber F1 Team. In the early afternoon practice session, Adderly Fong made his debut during a Grand Prix weekend. For the second free practice session permanent driver Adrian Sutil was back in the C33 for the race preparation.
Esteban Gutiérrez (1st practice: 14th, 1:46.556 min, 28 laps / 2nd practice: 15th, 1:44.316 min, 38 laps): “It was a positive day. Finally we were able to do both practice sessions. I think it was quite productive, although we do not have the pace we would like to have. It looks pretty tough for the long runs. We need to find the best way to improve our lap times.”
Adrian Sutil (2nd practice: 16th / 1:44.763 min, 37 laps): “Unfortunately, I missed the first early afternoon free practice session. At the beginning of FP2 we had to replace the front brake disks. These are obviously not ideal preparations. That’s the way it is at the moment, and we have to make the best out of it. We have a lot of work ahead of us and, furthermore, I did not have an optimal feeling in the car.”
Adderly Fong (1st practice: 19th / 1:48.269 min, 25 laps): “It was a good session. This car is totally different to the C31 I had driven in Valencia. As it was quite hot today the track temperatures were high, so it was very tricky to get the tyres to work. I think for my first FP1 I was pushing too much. I was trying to get onto the power as quickly as possible, but that driving style cost me time, especially in most of the slow corners such as in sector three. Then I had a cool down and was actually quicker on that lap on some of the corner exits. But I guess this is what FP1 is for, for learning a new car and also the operation procedures of the team. It was a bit overwhelming at the beginning with all the buttons I had to press. But having done the first run, you start to cool down. It was very nice to see drivers I normally watch on TV right in front of me. It is a privilege to be here, and it was a fantastic experience for me.”
Giampaolo Dall’Ara, Head of Track Engineering: “As expected today, the second session was a lot more significant than the first one, due to the temperature difference which we always have here. In the first session we tried to get the balance of the car in a certain window, particularly with Esteban. Adderly did a solid job in FP1, but had to focus mainly on becoming familiar with car and the procedures. In the second session we concentrated mainly on race preparation with temperatures we can expect in qualifying and the race. Overall the day was okay. We have to work on a number of things tonight in order to make further progress.”
Sauber F1 Team