23 May 2015
MONACO GP – QUALIFYING
DANIEL RICCIARDO, Position: 4, (3rd Practice – 4, 1:17.120)
“I’m a bit frustrated because I think we should be P3. There was a miscommunication from the pit wall starting the last lap and it’s a missed opportunity for us. At Monaco, every grid position counts, but we’re in a good place to attack and we’ll go all out to try for a podium finish in tomorrow’s race. I always enjoy this track and having to fight the car over the kerbs; I’ll try to have a bit of fun tomorrow.”
DANIIL KVYAT, Position: 5, (3rd Practice – 7, 1:17.471)
“It’s a positive qualifying result for the team. But we’re not where we want to be, although we’re making progress and heading in the right direction; we’re in a good position for tomorrow’s race. The rain didn’t affect us too much during quali but we’ll have to wait and see if it’s a factor tomorrow.”
CHRISTIAN HORNER: “It was a great performance by both our drivers to finish fourth and fifth, despite Daniel dropping a couple of tenths due to a miscommunication. I think they got everything out of the cars today and it puts us in a strong position for tomorrow’s race, and hopefully we can make some progress from there.”
Pursuit of Performance
No.4: Darren Pentney
Getting a Formula One car from drawing board to grid involves a huge amount of expertise. In this series we’ll talk to some of the highly skilled people whose unique talents help the team to go racing. This race, Darren Pentney, gearbox technician for Daniil Kvyat, explains that, even in the era of fixed ratios and sealed ’boxes, there’s a lot going on over the weekend.
“Recent seasons have seen some very significant changes to how we work – but the job hasn’t really changed that much. Perhaps it is a little easier now the race ’boxes are sealed and the ratios are fixed. On the other hand, the car is more complicated and the packaging truly amazing. So even if we have slightly less to do with the gearbox itself, there’s always work to do around it – it’s definitely not a job where anyone has time to sit down with a cup of tea! Early in my career I worked in touring cars and then the World Rally Championship – but Formula One operates on another level.
On Fridays we’ll sometimes be pulling the ’boxes apart, inspecting the bevels, the dog rings, checking the pumps and generally having a good look at all of the components. We can carry out non-destructive testing on all of the internal suspension if necessary. We’ll work closely with our colleagues from Total who will be constantly analysing lubricant samples with their lab equipment to check for wear, spotting potential problems before they become serious.
We’ll typically come to a race with five gearboxes. There’s the two race ’boxes, sealed for their six-race cycle, a practice ’box per car and a spare, which is usually freshly-built. Freshly built gearboxes are checked on a rig before coming to the track and are therefore ready to go if required. We have telemetry channels to monitor oil temperature and pressure so we can keep an eye on the health of new and used gearboxes alike.
The workload of the gearbox in Monaco is quite familiar to us because it’s one of the primary circuits we will use when testing a gearbox on a factory dyno. There’s more gearshifts here than at any other circuit, more diff-locking and unlocking. It gives the gearbox a good pounding!”