Saturday 9 July, Silverstone Circuit
Rio MRT05-02 Q1 P19 9 laps 1:33.098
Pascal MRT05-03 Q1 P20 9 laps 1:33.151
Congratulations Rio. A strong qualifying performance for you today.
“Yes, I’m quite happy with that performance. We always knew that this track would be more difficult for us, but personally, for me, it was a strong and consistent lap.”
You also managed to keep Sauber behind you?
“Yes, we managed to beat the Sauber, but we’re not as close to Renault as we would like. Hopefully we will be a little stronger in the race tomorrow, as our long run pace is better.”
On the face of it, a more disappointing day for you, but then you did come into the weekend predicting a more difficult time.
“I’m disappointed of course, but not surprised. I’ve been very aware that this is a very different circuit. We’ve been struggling with tyre temperature here again and we tried many different things with the set-up to try to progress. I just wanted us to improve step by step but we didn’t manage to find a solution unfortunately.”
What about the race tomorrow? Could that be a better story?
“In dry conditions, I’m afraid we don’t have the car to do what we did in Austria. Our long run pace is a little better and then there’s the weather forecast, which is quite unpredictable. Of course, we hope for crazy weather to work in our favour, because what last weekend showed is that we can make the best of situations. I’m looking forward to it, as always, and I’ll do my best for the team’s home crowd. I’m expecting a challenging day though.”
A word with Dave Ryan, Racing Director:
“After the highs of Austria last weekend, today’s performance probably feels quite disappointing. However, we’ve kept our own expectations in check all weekend and we were right to be more cautious here. This is not the same circuit and the track conditions are very different here at Silverstone. We managed to get the tyres working well in Austria and the warm ambient temperatures helped that, but today we’ve struggled to keep temperature in the tyres. Unfortunately, that’s as we predicted. Of course, we’re hopeful of better things in the race tomorrow and that’s what we’ll be pushing for.”