Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Qualifying – HRT F1 Team
Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi
12th of November 2011
Maximum temperature: Air 27ºC, Track 42ºC
14.00-15.00 FORMULA 1 PRACTICE SESSION 3
Vitantonio Liuzzi F111-003 #23 21st (20 laps) 1:45.302
Daniel Ricciardo F111-002 #22 23rd (20 laps) 1:45.732
17.00-18.00 FORMULA 1 QUALIFYING SESSION
Vitantonio Liuzzi F111-003 #23 23rd (8 laps) 1:45.159
Daniel Ricciardo F111-002 #22 21st (9 laps) 1:44.641
There were mixed feelings in the HRT F1 Team camp on the second day of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. The morning’s practice session ran smoothly with Vitantonio Liuzzi and Daniel Ricciardo getting through their programmes without any major issues finishing in 21st and 23rd place respectively. In the afternoon’s qualifying session, Ricciardo left it late posting his best time on his last lap helping him to finish in 21st place. The sour note of the session was the broken suspension bracket that Liuzzi’s car suffered which hindered his performance and prevented him from being up to pace. The Italian qualified in 23rd position. As a result of Pastor Maldonado’s ten place penalty for exceeding his engine allowance, Daniel and Tonio will start tomorrow’s race from 20th and 22nd respectively.
Vitantonio Liuzzi: “The result in qualifying was a shame because we’d had a good weekend up until qualifying. After my second run we suffered a broken suspension bracket and the car had massive understeering on left hand turns but I tried to continue doing some laps so that we could try and understand what the problem was exactly. The car wasn’t fast at all and very unbalanced and that is why we were so far behind. It’s a pity because this is a track where we could have achieved our best performance in qualifying this season. But we can still be competitive in tomorrow’s race if we fix it; tomorrow is another day”.
Daniel Ricciardo: “I’m happy with today’s performance as we were a little bit unsure coming in to qualifying. I always tried to stay positive and believed that I could put in the best performance possible but there were a few doubts with the set-up and free practice hadn’t gone well since yesterday. But we got out there and the car was good, I felt I drove well and managed to clock my best time on my last lap. I had a really good first sector and in the second sector I lost a bit of time because Glock had to let me through so I could’ve maybe even finished above him without that incident. But I pushed as much as I could like I always do and I’m very happy to get a good result out of it”.
Colin Kolles, Team Principal: “This morning we had a trouble-free session which allowed us to complete the programme and prepare for qualifying. The afternoon qualifying session started quite well too, but Tonio had an issue on the front suspension which has to be investigated and that prevented him to pull out a perfect lap in the end. Daniel was ahead of both Virgins but lost a couple of tenths on the second sector that left him right behind Glock. Nevertheless, the pace that both drivers showed over the different sessions is good and there is almost no difference to our direct rivals. Tomorrow, if we all do our best and stay focused from the beginning to the end, I am confident that we can get a good result for the team that would allow us to finish the season on high spirits”.