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F1 News. The drivers have their say after the Friday running at a cold and damp Shanghai circuit. Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel: "It is tight between the cars.
I haven't seen everything, but I think overall we can be quite happy. We tried a lot of things today and now we need to go through everything and see what the best set-up is. It's cooler here than at the last two races; I felt more comfortable, but we'll see. It's tricky to say if we look competitive. McLaren look good in all conditions. Red Bull's Mark Webber: "The sessions were mixed in terms of weather, but we were able to get some good information. We managed to run slick tyres this morning between showers and this afternoon we did a few long and short runs, so we're learning a lot quickly, which is important on a Friday.
We've come from a track that's 50C to a cooler circuit, so we have more grip here which helps, but I think overall that we're moving in the right direction. McLaren's Jenson Button: "It's been a little bit of a difficult day for me. I was trying to find a good set-up but the cold weather made it difficult to understand the car because the tyres weren't working perfectly.
Tomorrow should be a bit warmer than today - we don't quite understand the tyre temperatures and can't get them quite in the right area. And if we make a set-up change and the tyre temp changes by five or 10 degrees, then that change goes out the window. It's been a tricky day but there's a lot of good information to go through - we'll find a better direction overnight.
McLaren's Lewis Hamilton: "It's been a great day - it stayed dry in the afternoon so we successfully got through our run programme. We're still working away to improve the set-up, but the new bits on the car seem to be working: the guys back at the factory have done a great job. We look competitive - and I've been particularly focusing on the longer runs for this weekend. We still need to make a few improvements but our car looks good. It's going to be a close qualifying session tomorrow - it'll be a good battle and hopefully we can start as high up the grid as possible because I think we'll still be in the race and among the leading group.
I love the challenge of coming through and gaining positions. As always, we tried to work out which would be the fastest compound to use in qualifying and which the most consistent over a long run. Felipe and I split the workload on track and now, this afternoon it is down to the engineers to analyse the data and take the best decisions for tomorrow, both in terms of the updates we have brought for this race and from what we have learned regarding the tyres.
We definitely lack a bit of performance: we will try and find it for tomorrow, as well as trying to sort out the balance of the car, especially in terms of its grip. There's a lot to do if we want to have a good qualifying. Ferrari's Felipe Massa: "You definitely couldn't define today as being fantastic. This morning the track F1 on live from china late tonight a bit wet and that meant we weren't able to run as much as we would have liked, while in the afternoon, the track dried and we managed to get through our usual Friday programme. When I was on my first run on the Soft tyres, Glock went off the track at Turn 1 and I was forced to pit again: this meant I was unable to get the most out of this set of tyres and ificantly improve my time.
At the end of the session, we ran with a lot of fuel on board to improve the balance of the car. Mercedes' Michael Schumacher: "It was a trouble-free day, and I am quite happy with how our car is handling so far here. The balance of the car was reasonably good, and obviously a balanced car contributes a lot to lap time. As a team, we are a lot stronger in certain areas this season, and we have a much better base to work from, although we are not quite where we want to be with this car yet but I am confident we will get there.
We will now have to look deeper into the data in order to find out where we really are here, but I am looking forward to tomorrow's qualifying. Mercedes' Nico Rosberg: "It's important for us at the moment that we try a lot of different evaluations during practice to improve our race pace.
So I think it was a decent start to the race weekend today as we learned quite a few interesting F1 on live from china late tonight. The conditions were so changeable today that it was difficult to take the right decisions in terms of set-up work, and we struggled a little with the front tyres. That may have been caused by the cold temperatures today, and can change very quickly between now and the race, so I am not too concerned. Lotus' Kimi Raikkonen: "It's not often that you have a perfect car on Friday and there are certain things we have to improve.
To be honest, it doesn't matter if you are the slowest car on Friday if you are fast for the rest of the weekend. We now just need to look at the information and change the usual things on the car to improve it. We're aiming for better than what we've achieved from the last two weekends. For sure, we have some work to do on the car.
We tried some different things with the set-up today so we have some information to look at, and we know there are certain areas where we have to improve. Lotus' Romain Grosjean: "We had strange conditions this morning and a little bit of a difficult session this afternoon to be honest.
We're not where we would expect to be, partly due to the low temperature which we didn't expect. We'll analyse what's changed coming from two warm weekends to here where it's pretty cold and has changed the game. I'm sure we'll improve tomorrow, and of course if the weather changes again then everything will change. It's never easy to learn a new track in varying conditions, but it was good to get out there and find my way around, and also to get a proper impression of the intermediate tyres which is a bonus for me.
I'll be working late with the engineers tonight. Sauber's Kamui Kobayashi: "We had a few minor issues to fix, but overall today's practice sessions went smoothly. Sometimes the visibility was a bit poor and this didn't help to predict where the track was and wasn't slippery. My car definitely felt better balanced in the afternoon's practice session than it did in the morning, and I believe we look okay here on this track. Of course there is still room for improvement in regard to the set-up.
When we make our decisions for tomorrow we will not focus too much on today's track conditions, as we expect the temperatures to be a bit higher then. Force India's Paul di Resta: "It was a solid afternoon session and a positive start to our race weekend. The baseline set-up was pretty good to begin with and we just worked away at fine-tuning that during the session. As for the tyres, I would say the medium and softs are quite similar and we managed to get good data during the long runs on both compounds. Force India's Nico Hulkenberg: "A very short FP1 with the mixed weather, but the running I managed was still useful because we did a few laps on the medium tyre towards the end of the morning.
Then we had a very smooth FP2 in the dry conditions, which allowed us to complete all our objectives with long runs and tyre evaluation. Already I have a positive feeling in the car: it feels good to drive and I'm happy with the balance. Force India's Jules Bianchi: "It was my first ever practice session in Formula One and my first time driving the Shanghai circuit, so there was quite a lot to learn. We tried to do as much as possible, F1 on live from china late tonight the weather made things difficult and we didn't do a lot of laps.
After the install lap the track was still a bit damp in places, but almost immediately it started to rain again so we decided to wait for conditions to improve. I went out for a timed lap on the intermediates towards the end before switching to the dry tyres, but the track was very low grip and it was hard to push to the limit. It was good to work with the team and any time in the car is always valuable experience. Williams' Pastor Maldonado: "It was a bit difficult this morning with the track conditions.
We need to improve our qualifying set-up and I will work through that with my engineers this evening. We will make some changes overnight but the car is looking stronger for the race. Williams' Bruno Senna: "It was a productive P2 for us. I don't know the circuit particularly well so it is a steep learning curve, but I'm learning all the time and we'll have some further improvements tomorrow.
Williams' Valtteri Bottas: "The track conditions were pretty tricky today.
I have never driven a Formula One car in wet or damp conditions so it was a new experience for me. I liked it though; it was good fun. Even though we had limited running it was important that we completed a run on dry tyres, which we were able to do towards the end of the session. Caterham's Heikki Kovalainen: "A bit of a tricky day and one where I'm not sure how much we've learnt.
The conditions this morning meant we didn't learn too much, even though it was good to get some mileage on the inters, and this afternoon I had a few issues trying to find decent grip but we can work on that tonight. I'm pretty certain we can find quite a lot more from the whole package for tomorrow so let's see where we find ourselves when it gets serious on Saturday afternoon. Caterham's Vitaly Petrov: "I had a slightly interrupted session this afternoon with maybe one run lost to an alteration to the front suspension early in the session, but despite that I'm reasonably pleased with how the rest of FP2 went.
Tyre degradation doesn't look too bad on either compound and I think we can find more time with some changes to the mechanical grip, so with some hard work tonight I think we can be ok for tomorrow and the race on Sunday. Caterham's Giedo van der Garde: "That wasn't the easiest first FP1 session for me with the team but I'm pleased with the job I did and have had good feedback from the engineers, so I don't think I could have done any more in today's tricky conditions. In general the car balance was good. There's a lot of traction and the braking stability has improved since the test I did in Spain so it's good to see the car's developing well.
Bearing in mind the updates we've brought here, it's clear the team is pushing hard to the fight ahead and I'm glad I had the chance today to help here in China.
Toro Rosso's Daniel Ricciardo: "FP1 was partly wasted because of the weather, the damp track meaning we only got a handful of clean laps. But the afternoon was better and I was happy with the balance of the car on the Prime, although I did not feel we gained that much in performance terms when switching to the Option. Generally, we are in a similar position, compared to others, as in the first two races, although I feel we are looking more competitive than in Malaysia.
I am happier with the car here and hopefully that will mean we can fight for a top ten place. I enjoyed it and I think I learned it quite quickly, although the few drops of rain this morning limited the of laps I could do.
We managed to do a lot more this afternoon which was positive. I am not entirely happy with the feeling I had from the car, but I am quite confident that we can have a good car tomorrow and do well. HRT's Pedro de la Rosa : "The day started with a strange morning session as a result of the weather conditions, but it was the same for everyone.
However, the afternoon session went well where we were able to try out various set-up options and adjustments that enabled us to improve the balance of the car both with medium and soft tyres. We were able to complete the scheduled programme but tomorrow we should progress a bit. We definitely felt an improvement with respect to the Malaysian Grand Prix and the team is also working better together, but we still have a lot of work to do".
HRT's Narain Karthikeyan: "The weather wasn't favourable for us in free practice one and it meant that we didn't get any proper running done. I had a few problems in the morning session but the afternoon, where we tried a few different adjustments, was fine.F1 on live from china late tonight
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