CAR 1, SEBASTIAN VETTEL
First Practice Session: Position: 1, Best Time: 1:26.683, Laps: 24
Second Practice Session: Position: 1, Best Time: 1:25.722, Laps: 35
“The soft tyre is not lasting so long here, but it’s Friday and the track is still rubbering in; it’s normally improving for Saturday, plus we haven’t used this compound for a long time, so tomorrow it should be better.”
CAR 2, MARK WEBBER
First Practice Session: Position: 2, Best Time: 1:26.871, Laps: 17
Second Practice Session: Position: 2, Best Time: 1:26.011, Laps: 38
“The track was pretty good at the start of today’s sessions, better than last year I would say. However, the conditions in P2 are normally different to what we have in the race, so it’s hard to say how we will go tomorrow and Sunday, but hopefully we have the pace and can control the race. The car is very consistent, but we need to work on the tyres and make sure we get the most out of them.”
From the outside it might seem that all the stress of a race weekend funnels towards the race start, but the truth is that moments of intense pressure strike different team members at different times. This race, Hospitality Co-ordinator Georgina Russell reveals that in the world of celebs, guests and paddock club access it’s actually the Thursday before the race that’s brings the most stress…
“For the hospitality team there are pressure points across the whole weekend, but I’d say in terms of collecting information and getting everything sorted out, Thursday is our most stressful day. It’s the day when we meet the local Red Bull market people for the first time and we have to run through their activation schedule, explain to them how the paddock works and how the pass system works. As well as that we’re busy delivering tickets to team partners, so we need to make sure that all the tickets and passes reach the right people and that everybody has the correct parking passes. It’s usually pretty frantic.
Fridays are normally a bit quieter, as by and large there aren’t as many guests. Come Saturday it all kicks off again. For a lot of guests it’s the first time they’ve come to a race, so again we have all the teething problems of arrival, car parking and getting them into paddock club. But on Saturday we don’t have a lot of garage tours because the cars aren’t in the garage.
On Sundays, we naturally have a lot more guests, including all the VVIPs and top sponsors and partner guests. Garage tours with celebrity guests can be tricky sometimes because it’s usually just before the race and the garage is incredibly busy as the boys are getting the cars ready and sending them out to the grid and we’re traipsing through trying to explain it all and then trying to get the celebrity to the grid. But on the whole, it’s Thursday, with all its organisational issues, that has the most pressure.”