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Friday analysis - uncertainty surrounds Silverstone form 08 Jul 2011

Fernando Alonso (ESP) Ferrari 150 Italia.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 8 July 2011 Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes GP MGP W02.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 8 July 2011 Kamui Kobayashi (JPN) Sauber C30.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 8 July 2011 Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-26.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 8 July 2011 Adrian Sutil (GER) Force India F1 VJM04.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 8 July 2011 Rubens Barrichello (BRA) Williams FW33.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 8 July 2011 Jaime Alguersuari (ESP) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR6.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 8 July 2011 Vitaly Petrov (RUS) Lotus Renault GP R31.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 8 July 2011 Mark Webber (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB7. 
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 8 July 2011 Timo Glock (GER) Virgin Racing MVR-02.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 8 July 2011 Vitantonio Liuzzi (ITA) Hispania Racing F1 Team (HRT) HRT F111.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 9, British Grand Prix, Practice Day, Silverstone, England, Friday, 8 July 2011

Friday’s poor weather conditions at Silverstone rendered lap times generally inconclusive as much depended on what time you were out on the circuit and the specific condition, as the rain came and went.

The overall feeling in all quarters was frustration that nobody got any dry-road running to find out what effect the new rules on blown diffusers had had, especially after it emerged that those running Mercedes and Renault power had been granted differing concessions on the changes on the grounds of engine reliability.

That prompted a heated debate between Red Bull's Christian Horner and McLaren's Martin Whitmarsh in the team principals' press conference, with conversations suggesting that Renault had been allowed to retain 50 percent off-throttle throttle opening (cold blowing), while Mercedes had been permitted to retain an element of fuelled engine overrun (hot blowing).

With that row likely to rumble on, we take a team-by-team look at how everyone actually performed on track...

Ferrari
Fernando Alonso, 1m 48.161s, P7/1m 52.869s, P15
Felipe Massa, 1m 47.562s, P5/1m 49.967s, P1

An inconclusive day in terms of evaluating new aero changes such as the rear wing, but Massa’s fastest time in the afternoon was a little fillip. He reported graining of the front tyres on his one set of intermediates, but that they later got better and better as the conditions improved. Alonso tried slicks briefly in the morning, but found that the track was still too wet for them.

Mercedes
Michael Schumacher, 1m 47.263, P2/1m 52.325s, P12
Nico Rosberg, 1m 47.758s, P6/ 1m 50.744s, P2

No problems, apart from the weather.

Sauber
Sergio Perez 1m 47.422s, P4/1m 51.169s, P9
Kamui Kobayashi, 1m 50.133s, P18/1m 51.395s, P3

Perez had a good day and felt positive, while Kobayashi recovered well from his heavy morning crash exiting Club but said it was too early to make any real judgement about the C30’s performance here.

McLaren
Lewis Hamilton, 1m 48.549s, P8/1m 51.438s, P4
Jenson Button, 1m 48.841s, P15/1m 51.518s, P5

No problems here, just frustration that a new rear wing couldn’t be quantified conclusively. Hamilton was optimistic that the MP4-26 could be quite competitive if it dries out.

Force India
Adrian Sutil, (pm only) 1m 51.738s, P6
Paul di Resta, 1m 48.730s, P11/1m 51.781s, P7
Nico Hulkenberg (am only) 1m 48.598s, P9

No problems here, apart from the weather, and all three drivers were happy with their cars’ balance.

Williams
Rubens Barrichello, 1m 47.347s, P3/ 1m 51.992s, P8
Pastor Maldonado, 1m 48.809s, P14/1m 55.155s, P20

No problems, apart from the weather.

Toro Rosso
Jaime Alguersuari, 1m 48.678s, P10/1m 54.274s, P17
Sebastien Buemi, 1m 48.778s, P12/1m 51.189s, P10

Good old Alguersuari was the first to venture out in the afternoon, and was pleased to be competitive with anyone until conditions improved later when he wasn’t out. Buemi reported no problems apart from aquaplaning.

Renault
Nick Heidfeld, 1m 48.941s, P16/1m 54.023s, P16
Vitaly Petrov, 1m 49.603s, P17/1m 52.198s, P11

No problems, apart from the weather.

Lotus
Jarno Trulli, 1m 50.222s, P19/1m 55.155s, P21
Heikki Kovalainen (pm only), 1m 52.578s, P13
Karun Chandhok (am only), 1m 51.119s, P20

No problems, apart from the weather.

Red Bull
Mark Webber, 1m 46.603s, P1/1m 52.587s, P14
Sebastian Vettel, 1m 48.794s, P13/1m 54.545s, P18

No problems, and some good information on running Pirelli’s intermediate tyres.

Virgin
Timo Glock, 1m 52.470s, P21/1m 55.549s, P22
Jerome D'Ambrosio, 1m 53.469s, P23/1m 54.714s, P19

No problems, apart from the weather.

HRT
Tonio Liuzzi, 1m 53.143s, P22/1m 56.037s, P24
Daniel Ricciardo, 1m 54.334s, P24/1m 55.828s, P23

No problems, apart from the weather.

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