Chinese Grand Prix Practice – Force India
Paul – aero testing with update components; general set-up and balance to suit.
Nico – baseline car for aero testing; conducting control systems, further aero and weight
Paul – tyre evaluation and baseline for aero testing.
Adrian – aero testing with various components, general set-up and balance, control systems set-up.
FP1: overcast with high humidity (59.5 – 66.1%), temps air: 26.0 – 27.0°C track: 28.0 – 31.0°C
FP2: overcast with high humidity (63.9 – 69.2%), temps air: 26.0 – 27.0°C track: 31.0 – 35.0°C
Adrian Sutil (car 14, VJM04/04)
FP1: Did not participate
FP2: 7th 1:38.735 (35 laps)
The first session was really good; everybody worked well today and I am really happy and could concentrate on the normal Friday things like improving my car, set-up wise. We were not that far off straight away and after the first couple of laps I felt very confident in the car. With a hard set of tyres the car the balance was fine and feeling wise there was much more stability this weekend, so our upgrade might have helped. The soft tyre worked without problems. The long run seemed to be quite good so yes, another one like this tomorrow and I’ll be happy!
Paul Di Resta (car 15, VJM04/02)
FP1: 15th 1:41.610 (18 laps)
FP2: Not classified (no time set)
We got a little bit of an idea of where the car was in FP1, but obviously its crucial to try and take part in FP2. I think that I am a little more disadvantaged than I have been at any other grand prix now because effectively I have lost three sets of tyres and the important part where you try to do a bit of qualy and race simulation. The guys are working hard, so hopefully we can catch up on some lost ground tomorrow morning.
Nico Hülkenberg (car 15, VJM04/04)
FP1: 13th 1:41.494 (20 laps)
FP2: Did not participate
Again, I have to say another positive Friday. I am very happy with my session. We had some good running on the track here today and got through our programme of some nice test items, so I am quite pleased with how it went.
Dominic Harlow, circuit engineering director
During the morning’s session Paul was evaluating the aero update brought for this event, which appears to be behaving as expected. Nico was driving the VJM4-04 today and during a busy morning he completed a very useful programme. Paul had some KERS problems and the circuit was dusty to start, but otherwise it was a normal start to the weekend. Just before the start of FP2 however, we found a fuel pressure problem with Paul’s car, and despite the team’s best efforts to resolve it we were unable to get the car back on track in the time available. The cars are increasingly complex now with the extra systems on board, and the work involved to complete the job was too much. It was frustrating, but the issue is now eliminated and we will make up for the lost track time as best possible in the remaining practice sessions. Adrian was in the car for FP2 and completed a good programme where the engineers worked hard and improved the balance of the car as well as collecting useful data. We hope we can turn these steps into a competitive qualifying performance tomorrow.