Friday analysis - bring on the sunshine 14 Oct 2011
Heavy rain this morning at Yeongam demanded Pirellis full wet tyres, but teams were able to run intermediates in the afternoon and some drivers even tried the soft, or even the super-soft, slicks. The track wasnt ready for the softest compound, however, and there were many spins. All day drivers struggled to keep heat in their rubber. Largely it was a frustrating day, especially as fine weather is forecast for the rest of the meeting
Lewis Hamilton, 2m 03.391, P7/1m 50.828s, P1
Jenson Button, No time/1m 50.932s, P2
Hamilton and Button had few complaints after totally dominating practice in FP2, leaving Vettel 1.8s adrift. Neither expects the same gap in the dry tomorrow, but it was a promising start as the team seek to build on Suzuka and take the fight again to Red Bull.
Sebastian Vettel, 2m 02.840s, P2/1m 52.646s, P3
Mark Webber, 2m 05.183, P10/1m 53.049s, P5
Vettel said he wasnt worried about the gap to the McLarens (which might have been down to fuel loads), but like many he is concerned about tyre wear after Pirellis adventurous step in bringing their soft and super-soft tyres to an abrasive track. The new champion believes each driver could make up to five stops on Sunday. Webber reported no problems.
Fernando Alonso, No time/1m 52.774s, P4
Felipe Massa, No time/1m 53.707s, P7
Alonso said the rain meant the day had little significance and that he could not really evaluate a new front wing in the conditions. Massa, starting his 150th Grand Prix, said that the degradation of the intermediate Pirellis was a worry.
Jaime Alguersuari (pm only), 1m 53.402, P6
Sebastien Buemi, 2m 03.182s, P5/1m 53.948s, P9
Jean-Eric Vergne (am only), 2m 07.541s, P13
Neither Buemi nor Alguersuari reported any problems, apart from the latters collision when he exited the pits right in front of Rosberg who crashed into him. The Spaniard said he was impressed with his STR06s performance on Pirellis intermediates. Vergne said his morning was all about learning the car and the situation and that he wasnt comparing himself to anyone else, but he did a very solid job in difficult conditions.
Nico Rosberg, 2m 04.311s, P8/1m 53.914s, P8
Michael Schumacher, 2m 02.784s, P1/1m 54.965s, P14
Rosberg said he was able to do some helpful work despite his crash with Alguersuari, while Schumacher looked like his old self as he was immediately on the pace in the morning, before focusing on race set-up work in the afternoon when, despite the weather, he felt he was able to learn a lot about his MGP W02s behaviour.
Paul di Resta, 2m 02.912s, P3/1m 53.957s, P10
Adrian Sutil, 2m 03.141s, P4/1m 54.392s, P12
Di Resta did a super job on his first experience of the Yeongam circuit, while Sutil said they achieved a good starting point for Saturday as the final set-up they tried with the super softs at the end wasnt far off a dry set-up.
Vitaly Petrov, No time/1m 54.200s, P11
Bruno Senna, No time/1m 55.187s, P15
Renault didnt run in the morning, and gathered data in the afternoon. Senna had a tough time in a pointy car and had a couple of spins.
Rubens Barrichello, 2m 08.218s, P14/1m 54.831s, P13
Pastor Maldonado, 2m 06.852s, P12/1m 56.067s, P18
Williams had new wings and a new floor to try and were thus grateful for a trouble-free morning. Barrichello did well in the afternoon, but Maldonado lost time with a water leak.
Sergio Perez 2m 04.797s, P9/1m 55.203s, P16
Kamui Kobayashi, 2m 03.292s, P6/1m 55.544s, P17
Both Sauber drivers expressed frustration with the conditions and general lack of grip.
Heikki Kovalainen, No time/1m 56.669s, P19
Jarno Trulli (pm only), 1m 57.173s, P20
Karun Chandhok (am only), 2m 06.350s, P11
Again, frustration with the conditions was paramount here, but Chandhok was pleased with the job he did and Kovalainen said his T128 felt well balanced.
Timo Glock, 2m 14.508s, P18/1m 58.269s, P21
Jerome d'Ambrosio, 2m 12.658s, P17/1m 59.458s, P22
Glock had a front suspension problem which cost him some time, while DAmbrosio had a near miss with an impatient Vettel who went round the outside of him when the Belgian was trying to leave him room on the inside.
Daniel Ricciardo, 2m 09.232s, P16/1m 59.958s, P23
Tonio Liuzzi (pm only), 2m 00.165s, P24
Narain Kathikeyan (am only), 2m 08.832s, P15
All three drivers went through the motions, but while Karthikeyan was justifiably pleased with his pace in the morning, both Ricciardo and Liuzzi reported largely frustrating days in which they learned little of ultimate value.
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