Friday practice - selected driver quotes 18 Jul 2008
McLarens Lewis Hamilton on his domination at Hockenheim; Sebastien Bourdais on two tough sessions for Toro Rosso; BMW Saubers Robert Kubica on his morning brush with the barriers; and local hero Timo Glock on getting his Toyota airborne. All 20 drivers report back on day one inGermany (note - positions and times refer to practice two)
Lewis Hamilton, McLaren (1st, 1m 15.025s):
"The car felt quite different this afternoon compared to this morning's running. Maybe the wind had picked up, or changed direction, but the car didn't feel as stable. But by the end of the session, however, the car felt a lot more consistent - we found a good direction with the tyres and the set-up and so things look positive for tomorrow."
Felipe Massa, Ferrari (2nd, +0.697s):
"All in all, it was a good day. We were always competitive, as were our main rivals. It won't be a stroll in the park, but we can take them on. We also worked on a wet track and I feel I can claim we will be on the pace in any conditions. There was not much difference, today at least, in pure performance terms between the hard and soft tyres but I think the latter will be a little bit quicker still and will definitely be the right choice for qualifying. Now we have to study our data to be in the best possible shape for both qualifying and the race."
Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari (3rd, +0.735s):
"Friday's results always need to be looked at with a degree of caution as you never know for certain what the other teams were doing and today is no exception to that rule. For our part, we tried to improve the set-up of the car compared to the point we had reached at the end of the test and we found, especially towards the end of the day, a few settings that could be interesting. So, I am reasonably pleased with how things went and I think that there is still room for improvement. The times of our main rivals? As I said at the start, there are too many question marks to be certain: what I can say is that we will be competitive, especially as right up until the final minutes, the times were all very similar."
Heikki Kovalainen, McLaren (4th, +0.965s):
"The front-end of the car felt very good, but I felt less comfortable with the rear of the car, particularly in some of the slow-speed corners. But we made a number of small changes to the set-up and, by the middle of the session, I definitely felt I could push harder and found improved handling under both braking and traction. A good start to our weekend's work."
Mark Webber, Red Bull (5th, +0.992s):
We didnt get all the running in that we expected to, as we had an electrical problem with the car this afternoon and were a little bit on the back foot. But, at least we did some testing here last week and weve got some good information to go through. The temperatures are unusually cool this year and thats something we have to get used to, normally the German Grand Prix is pretty hot, but nonetheless well be fighting as usual.
Fernando Alonso, Renault (6th, +1.205s):
"It was a normal day without any difficulties. The rain this morning affected our programme slightly, but it also allowed us to run on a wet track which could turn out to be useful for later in the weekend. We must still improve the general balance of the car, but we have already laid the foundations for the weekend."
Nico Rosberg, Williams (7th, +1.330s):
During the pre-race test here last week, we have some mechanical updates to make our aero package work more effectively. This circuit definitely suits us a bit better, so we can look forward to a better weekend than recently. Out on the track today it was pretty windy and on the straights I was being buffeted from side to side. However, we managed a good tyre test even though our decisions may change with the rain we are expecting. If the bad weather does come, its no problem as we seem to go well in the rain.
Robert Kubica, BMW Sauber (8th, +1.338s):
"We tested the tyre compounds and did some basic set-up work. Unfortunately, this morning I touched the white line with the grooved tyres. There was some standing water. I lost control of the car and hit the barrier. However, we did not miss a lot of running time in the dry. This afternoon we were more or less able to complete the programme as planned. We now have to analyze the data and improve the balance of the car."
Nick Heidfeld, BMW Sauber (9th, +1.352s):
"Compared to last week's test the car's balance was better today. We have made several changes during the practice sessions and completed the tyre comparison. After wet conditions this morning, we knew there was a chance of more rain at the end of the second session. Consequently we switched to soft tyres earlier than usual. Overall both sessions went quite well."
David Coulthard, Red Bull (10th, +1.353s):
A green track means its more difficult regarding tyres, as the tracks rubbering in, which has an effect on graining and things like that. But, its the same for everyone. Other than that, it was a normal Friday practice for us.
Sebastian Vettel, Toro Rosso (11th, +1.397s):
Its much cooler than last week and we are not seeing the hot and sunny side of Germany! I think the rain between the test and this weekend means the track surface has much less grip. The track needs to get rubbered-in again. This afternoon, the wind was quite tricky too and you could lose the car because of that. Overall, I think we can be quite happy with the set-up and the balance we found, which was based on the data from last week, while today we did a few more tests to figure out what to do for tomorrow and for the race.
Jarno Trulli, Toyota (12th, +1.505s):
"It was a normal Friday for me. We did a lot of set-up work and evaluated the new aerodynamic package. It all went very smoothly and we had no problems so we have a lot of information to help us tomorrow. Now we will wait to see how competitive we are. As usual I have come here wanting to fight for the points. We had a successful test here last week, I did a lot of laps and got a lot of mileage but I don't want to be overly optimistic as it depends on many things and the battle is very close. We will fight hard tomorrow to achieve the best possible grid position and then battle for points."
Jenson Button, Honda (13th, +1.517s):
"A busy but productive practice for us today. We made some improvements to the balance and set-up of the car in both sessions, in addition to conducting an evaluation of the prime and option tyres. However I am not completely happy with the balance, so we have some work ahead of us before qualifying."
Rubens Barrichello, Honda (14th, +1.652s):
"We found a reasonable balance on the car during the morning session, however unfortunately we struggled to continue the progress this afternoon. The car had a real lack of grip in the slightly warmer afternoon temperatures, with the rear in particular feeling unstable. It was a tough session as we tried to work out the problem and we have a lot of work to do overnight to get the car back to a driveable set-up."
Nelson Piquet, Renault (15th, +1.709s):
"As we drove here last week, we already had a good basis to work from and we have built on that today by driving on a damp track this morning and a dry track in the afternoon. We were able to make good progress and have improved the set-up of the car. We will continue to work on this tomorrow morning so that we are ready for qualifying, but we are certainly moving in the right direction."
Timo Glock, Toyota (16th, +1.756s):
"The first session this morning was pretty good despite the changing track conditions but in the second session the car felt completely different. It was difficult to drive and the wind was changing, so it was pretty tricky to find the right way in terms of set-up. Also I ran wide at the last corner and the car was launched into the air so we need to look carefully to make sure it is okay. We have to analyse all the set-up data and work out which direction to go in tomorrow. I have always had a good experience here at Hockenheim and in the test last week we looked pretty good. Qualifying in the top 10 should be possible."
Kazuki Nakajima, Williams (17th, +1.804s):
The morning practice didnt go too badly and we had both wet and dry running, which is good preparation for the weather we are likely to see here. However it wasnt a great afternoon as we lost quite a lot of time with a problem on the car. By the time we had fixed this, everybody out on track had moved on to doing their long runs and it was very difficult to find free space on the circuit, so it was difficult to see exactly where we ended the day.
Sebastien Bourdais, Toro Rosso (18th, +1.835s):
I did not get to do too many laps today, because in the morning I had a problem with a flywheel sensor and then this afternoon it was the gearbox. But the guys did a great job to get me out before the end of the session. The track is very different to the way it was at last weeks test. So we had to make some changes to the set-up. The cars not bad and I think we know the way to go to improve.
Adrian Sutil, Force India (19th, +1.983s):
It was a fairly difficult day to be honest as the grip level was very low and we expected better track conditions. The set-up we had at the test last week was quite good, but today we weren't able to replicate it with the way the track was. Sometimes the car had oversteer and then understeer, so it made it very difficult to drive. Otherwise in the end we tried a lot of different things, so for sure we will improve over the weekend.
Giancarlo Fisichella, Force India (20th, +2.022s):
Today was OK, although the grip was not as good as we had last week at the test and obviously there was some rain this morning that made it even worse. We still have to work on the balance for tomorrow as it was quite inconsistent and at times it was difficult to push, but there's still another practice session tomorrow. We weren't so far away from Q2 in Silverstone last time, so we can certainly try again here.