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Friday analysis - the answers are blowing in the wind 19 Jun 2009

Adrian Newey (GBR) Red Bull Racing Chief Technical Officer.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 8, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 19 June 2009 Rubens Barrichello (BRA) Brawn Grand Prix BGP 001.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 8, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 19 June 2009 Adrian Sutil (GER) Force India F1 VJM02.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 8, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 19 June 2009 Fernando Alonso (ESP) Renault.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 8, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 19 June 2009 Kazuki Nakajima (JPN) Williams FW31.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 8, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 19 June 2009

Friday’s opening practice sessions for the British Grand Prix saw Red Bull lead the way by a comfortable margin as teams conducted their usual chassis set-up work and evaluated Bridgestone’s hard and soft rubber, while coping with wind which caused several engineers some head-scratching moments. We take a team-by-team look at progress…

Red Bull
Sebastian Vettel, 1m 19.400s, P1/1m 19.456s, P1
Mark Webber, 1m 19.682s, P2/1m 19.597s, P2

Insiders say the RB5s have a very serious aerodynamic upgrade here, and certainly both drivers seemed happy with the machines. Vettel said he had smooth runs and that the new parts worked well. Webber was happy too, but stopped at Stowe in the afternoon after he hit a kerb in Chapel which in turn caused the electronics to cut out.

Brawn
Jenson Button, 1m 20.227s, P3/1m 20.767s, P14
Rubens Barrichello, 1m 20.242s, P4/1m 20.244s, P6

Button tried some different aero evaluations and struggled initially to find grip in either the high- or low-speed corners as the wind affected the BGP001’s behaviour. He reported an improvement in the afternoon. Barrichello said he had a reasonable day and made some good progress on the balance in the afternoon.

Renault
Fernando Alonso, 1m 20.458s, P5/1m 20.237s, P5
Nelson Piquet, 1m 21.525s, P18/1m 20.608s, P10

Alonso was fifth in both sessions, and though he said he was happy he also called upon Renault to improve the R29 further. Piquet said he got as lot done in a busy day, which included trying a revised front wing.

Ferrari
Felipe Massa, 1m 20.471s, P6/1m 21.005s, P17
Kimi Raikkonen, 1m 21.179s, P14/1m 21.132s, P18

Massa said he was unhappy with both sessions in his lighter Ferrari with its revised aerodynamics. From hoping to win he has revised has aspirations for Saturday to qualifying in the top 10. Raikkonen said his balance was okay but that the F60 just didn’t seem quick enough.

Toyota
Jarno Trulli, 1m 20.585s, P7/1m 20.458s, P8
Timo Glock, 1m 21.386s, P16/1m 20.762s, P13

Trulli reported trouble-free sessions and that his TF109 felt ‘pretty good’ despite the wind. Glock reported no problems on a normal Friday.

McLaren
Lewis Hamilton, 1m 20.650s, P8/1m 20.417s, P7
Heikki Kovalainen, 1m 21.029s, P12/1m 20.733s, P12

Hamilton ran his car without KERS, which is deemed less beneficial here, and spent time getting the balance right without it. The team also back-to-backed revised front hubs and sidepod strakes. In the afternoon he said his MP4-24 seemed consistent but lacked speed in the fast sections. Kovalainen said he felt his KERS helped his lap times, and that it was a fruitful day for him.

Williams
Nico Rosberg, 1m 20.815s, P9/1m 20.468s, P9
Kazuki Nakajima, 1m 21.489s, P17/1m 20.209s, P4

Rosberg said Williams learned a lot aerodynamically during the course of the day, but that the wind changes created problems. Nakajima complained about traffic and tried several set-ups, going quickly in the afternoon.

Force India
Adrian Sutil, 1m 20.913s, P11/1m 20.141s, P3
Giancarlo Fisichella, 1m 20.838s, P10/1m 21.413s, P19

Sutil said he was happy with his VJM02 all day on the team’s home track, and surprised to be so fast in the afternoon. He remains confident about getting into Q2 tomorrow. Fisichella suffered oversteer in the afternoon, and changes and new tyres sent him into understeer.

BMW Sauber
Robert Kubica, 1m 21.801s, P20/1m 20.622s, P11
Nick Heidfeld, 1m 21.103s, P13/1m 20.932s, P15

Kubica had a difficult day with electronic problems in the morning which prevented him doing a single proper lap. His engine then lost power in the afternoon. Heidfeld said his was a normal day on a busy and dirtier than usual track.

Toro Rosso
Sebastien Bourdais, 1m 21.384s, P15/1m 20.945s, P16
Sebastien Buemi, 1m 21.590s, P19/1m 21.668s, P20

Bourdais and Buemi tried different set-ups. The Frenchman was fairly happy with his, but the Swiss was not satisfied and said he’ll end up going in a similar direction to Bourdais on Saturday.