The Renault F1 Team ran its normal Friday practice routine today at Sao Paulo's Interlagos circuit, with drivers Fernando Alonso and Giancarlo Fisichella evaluating tyre types and fine-tuning chassis set-ups for this demanding circuit. As the ...
The Renault F1 Team ran its normal Friday practice routine today at Sao Paulo's Interlagos circuit, with drivers Fernando Alonso and Giancarlo Fisichella evaluating tyre types and fine-tuning chassis set-ups for this demanding circuit.
As the circuit is little-used throughout the season, grip levels improved steadily throughout both sessions, with lap-times improving as cars laid down more rubber and ran new tyres towards the end of the second practice hour.
Both Renault drivers showed competitive form early in the session, and set consistently competitive times on used tyres as they began assessing the consistency of Michelin's products, while also fine-tuning chassis set-up. They obtained good results, and have a firm direction in which to work overnight.
"The grip levels were very low today, and the track was getting better and better as the session went on. That means it's difficult to draw too many conclusions about the set-up or the performance of the car, and we will have to work well this evening to anticipate how the circuit will change for tomorrow and the race."
"So what counts today is the basic feeling, and it was good, with no problems at all in either session. The Michelin tyres were working well, and the car was pretty comfortable to drive. So I am feeling happy, and confident for the rest of the weekend."
"With difficult track conditions today, it was hard to put together the best lap straight away on new tyres. There is some work to do on the car balance as I had too much oversteer, especially in the second sector, but we improved the situation during practice -- and we will hope to take another step forward for tomorrow.
"We will look hard at the tyre choice tonight because that will be an important factor for the rest of the weekend, but I think we are in a good position."
Pat Symonds, Executive Director of Engineering:
"In spite of what's at stake this weekend, we had a very normal Friday, running our usual programme evaluating the two types of Michelin tyre we have brought to this race. There does not appear to be a big difference between them at the moment, and we will study the data tonight to select the right tyre for the race."
"Both cars were suffering from some oversteer today, but we took a step in the right direction during the session and will improve further overnight. The engines performed without incident, so all in all, it was a typical Friday made up of solid race preparation."
Denis Chevrier, Head of Engine Operations:
"As we have become used to saying this year, this was a normal Friday for the team. This morning, we chose to swap Fernando's original engine for a unit of the same specification that was installed in the spare car, because the latest results of our dyno testing in Viry indicated it offered us the optimum performance-reliability compromise. This unit functioned faultlessly today, as did the E specification engine in Giancarlo's car."
"On the engine side, we did plenty of laps and have the data we needed to conduct our usual approval processes, and fine-tune the mapping of the V8's. As always, much of the day was devoted to fine-tuning the chassis set-up, which is particularly important at such a tricky circuit. We made solid progress, and will continue in the same direction tomorrow."
Fernando Alonso: 10th
17 laps total
Giancarlo Fisichella: 12th
18 laps total