Romain Grosjean ended the first day of running for the Belgian Grand Prix with more to come from the team’s E22 at Spa-Francorchamps. Romain ended the first session with the thirteenth fastest time and the second session in fourteenth. Pastor endured a more difficult day, with the eighteenth fastest time in the morning and then an early off in the afternoon session stopping his running for the day.
Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director – Technical programme notes
• The morning session was predominantly dedicated to aerodynamic assessments, including a new front wing on Pastor’s car.
• The afternoon session focused on tyre assessment, with a revised programme for Romain.
• Pastor’s run programme was curtailed after damage was sustained to his car early in FP2.
• Pirelli’s medium (white) compound tyre was used in the morning session and the medium and soft (yellow) in the afternoon.
What we learned today:
• There is further potential from the E22 in Spa.
Romain Grosjean, E22-03
Free practice 1: P13, 1:53.597, 20 laps
Free practice 2: P14, 1:52.196, 25 laps
Romain: “The first practice session went well today. We had a little bit more of a challenge in FP2 with a small technical issue on the rear of the car early on in the run and there was some loss in performance as a result. Given that this is a track which we knew would be a challenge, we focused mostly on finding the right downforce level and getting the set-up where we want it to be. It’s likely to be quite a tough weekend but we’re optimising every part of the package. You never know what can happen at Spa.”
Pastor Maldonado, E22-04
Free practice 1: P18, 1.55.336, 21 laps
Free practice 2: No time set, 2 laps
Pastor: “I lost the car at the exit of turn nine so that was my afternoon finished. There was a quick hello to the medical centre on the way back to the garage, but I’m fine and the damage to the car is not so much. I’d already been able to determine from the morning that we have a reasonable car here. Certainly, we have potential to fight for a good qualifying session and a good race. We do struggle with our power for the long straights, but it is better than we expected so that’s a plus point. We’re compensating with the set-up for the second sector so let’s see what we can do tomorrow.”
Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director: “Today was planned as a conventional Friday in terms of run programme, however Pastor was unable to get any useful running in the afternoon after his off. This meant we had to revise our plans for Romain somewhat. In the morning we completed our aerodynamic assessment schedule including Pastor evaluating a new front wing. In the afternoon we gained a good amount of data from Romain. His suspension set-up was not perfect and we’ve identified some easy gains there, and we also have sufficient data to run through ahead of tomorrow.”