Japanese Grand Prix Qualifying – HRT F1 Team
Saturday, 8th of October 2011
Maximum temperature: Air 23ºC, Track 34º C – Sunny
11.00-12.00 FORMULA 1 PRACTICE SESSION 3
Vitantonio Liuzzi F111-002 #23 24th (8 laps) 1:41.097
Daniel Ricciardo F111-003 #22 23rd (19 laps) 1:38.355
14.00-15.00 FORMULA 1 QUALIFYING SESSION
Vitantonio Liuzzi F111-002 #23 24th (2 laps) DNS
Daniel Ricciardo F111-003 #22 22nd (7 laps) 1:37.846
Just like yesterday, the second day at the Japanese Grand Prix left a bittersweet taste for HRT F1 Team’s drivers in Suzuka. Daniel Ricciardo has continued his progression at the quick 5.807km circuit and in the morning session reduced the gap with his closest rivals. In the afternoon’s qualifying session he improved on his times with both sets of soft tyres and will start tomorrow’s race from 22nd position.
Vitantonio Liuzzi experienced a more complicated day after suffering problems with the engine of his F111 in both free practice three and qualifying. The Italian driver was only able to complete eight laps in the morning and, when the issue was thought to be resolved for qualifying, Liuzzi could only get through two laps before having to return to the garage. Despite having only completed a few laps, everyone is confident that these problems will be a thing of the past in tomorrow’s 53 lap race.
Vitantonio Liuzzi: “It’s been a terrible start to the weekend. Yesterday I could only do four laps, eight this morning after an engine issue and this afternoon again problems so in the end I’ve hardly done any laps in two days. We’ll start from last position, which isn’t very positive, and it’s a shame because the few laps we did weren’t too bad. But this is one of the best races of the season with a great atmosphere so I’m hoping to put this behind me and have a good race tomorrow”.
Daniel Ricciardo: “From my point of view it was not a bad session. I approached it well and did what I had to do. In qualifying you have to push 100% and I definitely did that. I went a little bit wide in some areas from pushing too much but I’d say I only lost about a tenth which isn’t enough to get in front of our rivals. I am satisfied because the balance of the car was the best it’s been all weekend but the others have also improved and we have to keep on working. Anyways it’s time to focus on the race where I’m keen to put in a good performance”.
Colin Kolles, Team Principal: “Again another day with highs and lows. Daniel has done a good job and has always been pushing and taking steps forward. But today, again, we experienced problems with Tonio’s engine. Yesterday he could only manage 4 laps and only 10 today. It is far from ideal but with his experience I’m sure he will be able to pull out a good race. Races are always a different matter and now we can only hope for a trouble-free race for both cars to finish the race”.