07 October


07 OCTOBER 2017
DANIEL RICCIARDO, Position: 4th*, 1:28.306 (Practice 3 – Position 5th, 1:30.018)
“Once again it was pretty close between myself and Max today. I got the half a tenth on Max this time and he’d had it on me in Qualifying in the last few races. It was pretty important to be ahead and I will start third now because of Bottas’ penalty which puts me on the cleaner side of the grid, so thank you Valtteri. I will take everything I can for now and I’m happy with that result. I had a slightly different set-up from Max today and chose to remove some downforce which I hope will help me in the race. I haven’t seen Lewis’ lap yet but I’ve seen his time and we can’t quite do that, I think we feel we got pretty much everything out of the car today and we definitely couldn’t find a second. We will see what tomorrow brings but I think if we can stay in a podium position we will be leaving here pretty happy. The start will be really important for us, it’s a pretty tricky track to overtake on and strategy is likely to play in to it but if I can get them on the start then hopefully that will be where I stay. I hope I get my first Suzuka podium, it’s always been a fun track but I’ve never stood on the podium so that’s my target.”

MAX VERSTAPPEN, Position: 5th**, 1:28.332 (Practice 3 – Position: 4th, 1:29,910)
“It wasn’t an ideal Qualifying session for me, Q1 and Q2 went well but then we tried a few changes for Q3 which put me out of my rhythm a bit. The time was still ok but I think I could have got a bit more out of it at the end. It was a better second timed lap but I think I could have finished a position higher, it was very tight. The new cars mean higher corner speed which at this track essentially means some corners turn into longer straights, it’s a bit more physical and obviously means faster lap times. This also means it is a tougher track for us than in the years before. I think the Mercedes race pace is quick but we are unsure of how Ferrari are looking, tomorrow will tell. We gain one spot with Bottas’ penalty so all we can do is fight and try to progress from P4. I would like rain but that isn’t going to happen so hopefully with the dry weather we have good degradation and can challenge for a good result. Daniel and I are running different configurations tomorrow so we will have to see how they play come the race. I hope the people in front make Turn 1 interesting tomorrow but not for me. I like sandwiches but not on the track.”

CHRISTIAN HORNER, Team Principal: “A pretty straightforward Qualifying for our guys today. Daniel and Max delivered two very clean laps, trying slightly different set-ups going into the race. With the penalties for Bottas and Raikkonen this results in them lining up in third and fourth on the grid for tomorrow’s grand prix. This circuit presents challenges to our car comparative to some of our competitors, particularly in Qualifying but we will take some confidence going into tomorrow’s race that we can be competitive.”

*Will start the Japanese GP in P3 owing to grid penalties to Car 77
**Will start the Japanese GP in P4 owing to grid penalties to Car 77
posted at 13:57:33 on 10/07/17 by webmaster - Category: races