What did Williams Martini Racing learn from practice today?
Objectives: Aero evaluations, set-up and tyre work
FP1: Felipe Massa: 1:39.461 (17th), Susie Wolff: 1:44.212 (21st) FP2: Valtteri Bottas: 1:36.016 (6th), Felipe Massa: 1:36.671 (11th)
Rob Smedley, Head of Performance Engineering: It was an eventful day. We started off in FP1 with Susie stopping on the track. We all really felt for her as she was just starting to get into our morning programme. I'm glad she's going to be back in the car at Hockenheim though to show us what we all know she can do. In FP1, Felipe also had an accident so both crews were extremely busy between the sessions to get both cars back out on track this afternoon. They did a really good job and the second session was slightly less eventful. The potential of the car is very much there. It was very windy, very low grip conditions, and the tyres are quite hard for this circuit as we knew they would be. The car is performing more or less where we expected. The long runs were not consistent for anybody, but our long run pace looks quite good, especially against the teams we're fighting in the championship, so we're pleased with that. There are a lot of positives from the day and a lot of potential, but we do have a good amount of work to do to put it all together.
Valtteri Bottas: FP2 was ok from our side; it was quite a good session. The main thing was the set-up work. We were fine tuning the set-up and managed to improve it quite a bit during the session. There's still a lot of work to do tomorrow, in these windy conditions it's not easy to set up the car. Anything we can do to improve it is going to be a big help because qualifying is going to be close tomorrow.
Felipe Massa: This morning wasn't the best as I put a wheel on the artificial grass and that was it, the session was over. As a result I lost some time in FP2 and we struggled with the balance but we made some progress. Tomorrow should be a better day but we are behind on our run plan. I have to say a big thank you to the team as they worked very hard to get the car ready for the second session. We have a lot to do to get the set-up right for tomorrow and the weather may not help us either.
Susie Wolff: A huge thank you to all the support and help that I have had to get me ready for today. It was a great feeling driving out of the garage. When I had my helmet on, it was just me and the car. I knew what I had to do and the car felt great. It was only one and a half flying laps but these things happen, I have another session in Hockenheim that I now have to work towards. Every time I step in the car, there is something to learn, so there are a few positives to take from today.
Williams Martini Racing