2012 Malaysian Grand Prix: Qualifying Report
Following a hot and humid qualifying hour in Sepang, Paul Di Resta and Nico Hulkenberg qualified in 14th and 16th places respectively for tomorrow’s Malaysian Grand Prix.
P14 Paul Di Resta (VJM05/02)
Paul: “We definitely improved the car between final practice and qualifying, but it was a tough session and it got quite a bit warmer during the two hours between qualifying and practice. My laps in Q2 were good and I got sectors one and two right, but I maybe lost out in the final sector, which I never really maximised. I think P14 is a reasonable place to start and hopefully our race pace and tyre management will pay off tomorrow. The other variable is the weather because there is always a high risk of showers late in the afternoon.”
P16 Nico Hulkenberg (VJM05/03)
Nico: “You only have to look at the times to see how close things were today. Half a tenth would have given me two or three places, while finding a tenth would have put me twelfth on the grid. To be honest, though, I don’t think there was any more to come because I pretty much got the maximum from the car. Now it’s all about racing well and using the strategy to try and come away with a result. Having already missed most of the race last weekend in Melbourne, it almost feels like the first race of my season, so hopefully I can go the distance and have a strong performance. Tyre degradation will be a key factor in the race and the chance of rain could also mix things up.”
Robert Fernley, Deputy Team Principal
“Overall we can’t be too disappointed with our qualifying showing today. Yes, we would have liked to have been a little higher up, but looking over the timesheets shows just how closely matched the grid is. In fact, just three tenths cover the cars from ninth to 16th and with such margins the slightest error can cost you three or four positions. Both Paul and Nico delivered consistent laps, although it’s fair to say they were both marginally compromised by the release of the Mercedes cars in Q2. However, I remain optimistic for tomorrow and believe we’re in good shape, and that our race pace will allow us to get up there challenging for points.”