20 JULY 2012
• Aero evaluations, tyre runs and set-up work.
Mark Gillan, Chief Operations Engineer: Today’s sessions were dominated by the weather, with the second session starting in full wet conditions and subsequently transitioning to intermediate running. Pastor drove well today and was particularly strong in the second session on intermediates. Valtteri went through a development programme in the morning but unfortunately towards the end of the session he locked his rear brakes on entry to T13 and crashed into the barrier. The mechanics worked extremely quickly and did an excellent job to get the car ready again for Bruno at the start of the second session. Bruno got out on track early and worked on set-up in the changeable conditions. The forecast suggests that qualifying will be wet and the race dry so it looks set to be another very interesting race weekend.
Pastor Maldonado: It was a challenging practice session for everyone because the track conditions were changing a lot and I was trying to adapt my driving style and the car to best suit those conditions. We have a good balance in the car in wet conditions, even with a damp track, and the time I set in the second session shows that if it rains tomorrow we will be competitive.
Bruno Senna: It was a bit of a frustrating day because the weather was so changeable. We started on extreme wets but the track dried out very quickly and we then went on to intermediates where our pace was competitive which is promising. Unfortunately we missed the window to get some good laps in on the drying track but overall the car is feeling good and with a bit more set-up work we can have a good weekend.
Valtteri Bottas: Unfortunately the rain affected what we were testing and we had to adapt to the weather, but we still managed to do quite a few laps and completed most of what we were aiming for. The session ended disappointingly for me when I lost the back end of the car coming into the stadium section, locking the rear when I hit the brakes but I want to thank the team as they did a great job to put the car back together for Bruno’s afternoon session.