19 September 2015
DANIEL RICCIARDO, Position: 2, (3rd Practice Ė 4, 1:46.359)
ďItís really nice to be back up here on the front row; itís been a while and itís a bit of coincidence that itís Seb and I together, but it should be a good race. Qualifying was exciting and to have no Mercedes up here is a surprise, so we will definitely try to capitalize on that - it would be nice to be back in the press conference tomorrow! Iím really happy for the team as we have definitely made a load of progress, since Silverstone and particularly since Budapest. Todayís result backs up the confidence I had in the car. Weíll be aiming for the win, as thatís where the points are and the champagne is. Seb put himself out of reach, so we are second best for today and weíll try and go one better tomorrow. Itís always a challenge here and you need to have confidence in the car, because itís hot and physical and a test for the driver which makes it fun. Iím happy with the way the weekend has gone so far.Ē
DANIIL KVYAT, Position: 4, (3rd Practice Ė 3, 1:46.167)
ďIím happy with todayís qualifying. I think itís a good place to start the race tomorrow. Obviously as a driver you always want more but weíll do our best to get as many points in the race as we can. The red cars are looking strong but we will take the fight to them during the race. Itís a long race and we will have to be patient. The chassis is behaving really well and the team have done a great job with the car.Ē
CHRISTIAN HORNER: ďThat was a great performance from both our drivers. Daniel lining up alongside Sebastian on the front row of the grid is the perfect place to be starting, backed up by Dany on the second row. Remarkably, we are ahead of both Mercedes, which is down to a great team performance. Hopefully we can now turn these strong grid positions into a good points haul tomorrow.Ē
Headline: The Specialists
Getting a Formula One car from drawing board to grid involves a huge amount of expertise. In this series weíll talk to some of the highly skilled people whose unique talents help the team to go racing. This race, Composite Design Group Leader Ė Chassis, Jason Bond, explains how far his role is from being a techie at a CAD station, and more about diplomacy and good communicationÖ
I did a degree in mechanical engineering and specialised in composite material. During the latter stages of that I made some carbon fibre bikes, which was where my main passion was and still is, but it was a very limited avenue of employment. So I looked at aerospace or motorsport and motorsport seemed to me to be much more dynamic. I got a break and started working on the BMW Le Mans car and then moved to Stewart Grand Prix Ė I have been at Milton Keynes ever since.
Itís an exciting time for me at the moment. Iíve been involved in the chassis design since RB3 - which was Adrianís first wholly designed car Ė and have now transitioned into a managerial role, effectively owning the chassis design group. Making that move as weíre working on next yearís car is very exciting; itís the next big challenge for me.
Because the group is large Ė it swells during the design phase Ė and we work to horribly short time scales, I have to now keep a much closer eye on the global design of the chassis. Itís a complex, and also the largest, part of the car and everyone affectionately calls it the Ďbig black bracketí. Everything attaches to it, so my role now is not to look at the minute detail of the design as I used to, but to look at it as a whole, making sure that the product weíre making is the best it can be, keeping the team honest but giving them the freedom to do their job in the best way they can.
Itís a big challenge. You are talking to every department and trying to match their needs to the global view. Youíve got the suspension designers, the electronics folk, the engine systems guys, the cooling guys and the aerodynamics department Ė almost everyone. Every avenue of the car design interweaves with the chassis.
You have to look at it from the standpoint of the bigger picture. If someone makes a request you have to look at it on the basis of what is the overriding reason for the request, who that affects and if itís affecting another component. If it is reducing the potential performance of that other component you have to weigh up the pros and cons. Itís a balancing act. No engineer likes to compromise a design so there is a lot of bartering and jockeying for position as everyone believes that the element theyíre championing is valid, so I think the skill I probably bring is in having good relationships with all the departments, not just because Iíve been here a long time, but because I spend a lot of time trying to understand what every department is doing and how they are working and how best we can utilise that. Itís more and more difficult to have those relationships because the team has grown a lot but I do try to do that, especially with the race and test team guys, as they are putting the car together and taking it apart day-in day-out, and they live and breathe it.
I think those relationships are vital and thatís why Iíve stayed with the team. I feel I have a second family at this place.