Driver Quotes: Spanish GP Qualifying

10 MAY 2014


#1 Sebastian Vettel

“I left the garage for Q3 and lost drive in second gear; I still had third gear and above so we thought
we could do the lap with that, but by Turn 1 I had lost all the other gears, so we couldn’t continue. I
was getting more in to the rhythm with each lap after missing yesterday’s sessions. It was quite close
between the cars after the Mercedes and I think I could have had a go for P3 today, but we didn’t get
that far. I’m of course quite disappointed.”

#3 Daniel Ricciardo

“Without putting too much attention on Mercedes, I’m happy with what I’m doing, so I think today
was pretty good and I wasn’t too disappointed with the lap. I don’t really see how I could have
improved much more today, so I think we’re doing the best we can, but now that we’re around third
or fourth I want to close the gap to the silver cars! Sorry for Seb, he’s had a pretty rough weekend. I
prefer it when we are both able to compete. Looking to tomorrow, then I think third is the best we
can do. If Mercedes continue at the pace they had today then realistically we won’t catch them, so
then third, although it wouldn’t be a victory, it would be really satisfying.”


#44 Lewis Hamilton

I’m overwhelmed to get pole position because I’ve had a pretty tough day in the car, particularly
after yesterday went so well. I was really happy on Friday and we changed a couple of small things
overnight, just the tiniest of tweaks. But it was a real handful today because track conditions had
changed. Nico had a strong P3 and first two sessions of qualifying, so we were making small
adjustments to the differential to try and make improvements to how the car was handling for Q3.
On that final run, I really had to eke out everything and more from the car and myself to get pole and
I’m so happy that I managed it. The hard work from the team and the development step we have
made this weekend are totally inspiring for me – I haven’t experienced this level of performance
before. I’ve never won at this circuit and I would love to, because my support in Barcelona has been
growing every year and I have some amazing fans here in Spain. We are going to give it everything
we can tomorrow to get the win.

#6 Nico Rosberg

I had a good feeling throughout today and I quite enjoyed Qualifying. I had a good lap at the end
but Lewis just did a better job in Q3. Starting second is a bit of a disadvantage but it’s such a long
straight down to the first corner, so I will hope to have a better start than Lewis tomorrow and
overtake him. It’s also a long race where tyre degradation will be a key issue so there may be some
opportunities to take advantage. I’m looking forward to tomorrow and I’ll be giving everything to
take advantage of this amazing Silver Arrow that we have at the moment and hopefully extend my
lead in the Championship.


#14 Fernando Alonso

“This wasn’t a good qualifying session, but the outcome was more or less what we could
have expected on a difficult weekend, especially in terms of grip, not just for us but for all the teams.
I’d definitely have liked to be starting from further up, but that’s how it went today, we weren’t quick
enough and now we must think about tomorrow and try to make up some places to score as many
points as possible. Of the updates we brought here, some worked, while others need further testing.
There is a definite improvement compared to China, but we have some problems with the rear,
despite the many set-up changes we made. Kimi did very well and I hope that both Ferraris can
finish higher up. Now we must find the best strategy for tomorrow and try to get a good start. But
above all, we mustn’t make any mistakes, because this race demands a high level of concentration.”

#7 Kimi Raikkonen

“We can’t be pleased with sixth place, because naturally we want to be fighting for the top
places. But compared to the last race, we have managed to solve some problems and have
improved the feeling I have from the car. Yesterday, the long run went well and, in general, we did a
good job, but there is still much more to do, because we are not yet as fast as we would like to be.
Tomorrow, the goal is to get a good start and then have a normal race. Of course, we will also need a
good strategy and we will have to keep an eye on our tyre management. It won’t be easy, but we are
definitely going to fight.”


#8 Roman Grosjean

“It’s very positive for everybody in the team to be on the third row of the grid It’s where we want to
be and there is certainly more to come. We have been working hard and had good updates here
and found some ways to continue to improve the car and make it work better. We found some more
performance and today we had a good qualifying session.”

#13 Pastor Maldonado

“I had a big chance of doing well in the session but unfortunately I lost the car with big snap
oversteer in the exit of the corner in turn 3. We need to have a look at what happened and work to
get ready for tomorrow. We were quite competitive today in terms of pace and kept improving
throughout the weekend. With tyres available for the race we can work on the strategy and
hopefully recover places on Sunday.”


#22 Jenson Button

“It’s pretty tough for everyone out there – the track doesn’t have much grip, so we spent each
session working away at the car’s balance to try and find something that works. We almost got there,
but still had too much understeer for the final run.

“Still, it wasn’t too bad: we probably could’ve found a little more time within the set-up but it
probably wasn’t going to be enough to make much of a difference.

“There’s going to be lots of sliding in the race tomorrow. We’ve done a pretty good job in that we’ve
saved a set of Options for the race – I’m not yet sure what strategy we’ll adopt, but it’s good to have
some leeway on strategy.

“We’ve definitely shown signs of improvement this weekend, although we’re still not yet where we
want to be.”

#20 Kevin Magnussen

“We’ve definitely made improvements to the car – it’s just a shame I couldn’t prove it to the team
this afternoon.

“I don’t exactly know what the problem was with my car. We had an issue with the power unit
during Q1 that we tried to fix. But, in Q2, we decided to save the engine and retire the car.

“Tyres are going to play a big role in the race tomorrow, so let’s see how things pan out. I’ll be aiming
to work cleanly through the first lap, but I think we might struggle a little bit – our qualifying pace
looks a little stronger than our race pace.

“It’s a shame, but at least we have some tyres saved for the race, so I hope we can do something


#27 Nico Hulkenberg

“My lap was very good and I am pleased with the effort we put in during qualifying. We made some
steps forward with handling and set-up compared to FP3 this morning, but we still ended up a little
bit short of Q3. Considering that we haven’t been totally comfortable with the car for most of the
weekend, P11 is a very good place to start the race and gives us an extra set of medium tyres
compared to the rest of the top ten. I expect a very strategic race tomorrow, especially as most of the
teams around us seem to be on a similar level when it comes to race pace. It’s going to be a
challenge for everyone and tyre management will be a key point, but points are within our reach.”

#11 Sergio Perez

“I think we finished qualifying more or less where we expected. Maybe a place in Q3 was possible,
but I did not manage to complete my final run in Q2 because my preparation lap was not ideal.
There was too much traffic and my tyres were not optimised, which is why I chose to abort my final
quick lap and save the tyres. Coming here we knew this track would be quite a difficult one for us,
but we still believe we can be competitive tomorrow. I think the race will be all about getting the
strategy choice right because it’s so difficult to overtake on this track. Our race pace is looking
promising so we have a chance to get back some positions tomorrow.”


#99 Adrian Sutil

“This was obviously not the result I had hoped for. But that’s how it can be in qualifying.
Unfortunately, we worked in the wrong direction today. In the third free practice I struggled to get
temperature into the tyres, but in qualifying it was exactly the opposite. The tyres overheated
significantly. We realised this after the second run and tried to improve it for the final run. We
succeeded to a certain extent, but most of the settings were already done and we couldn’t change
much. I believe this cost us almost a second per lap and several grid positions. So we missed our
goal. Nevertheless, we learned something today, and I am positive we can still achieve something
from where I am starting. With a good pace in the race I will be where I should be at the end.”

#21 Esteban Gutierrez

“That was the maximum we could achieve today. Considering the difficulties I had yesterday, the
team did an excellent job to put things right for today. We definitely still have issues which we have
to solve, but being closer to the competition is motivating us. Obviously, we are not completely
satisfied with today’s outcome, but with some more work we can find the last tenths to be in the top
ten. We need to take out the positive and analyse the negative. For tomorrow it will be a big
challenge because the track temperature will probably be quite high, and the tyres are difficult to
handle under these conditions. As always, we will do our best.”


#25 Jean-Eric Vergne

“It was part of the strategy not to run in Q2, save new tyres and prepare for an aggressive race
tomorrow. I think it was a sensible decision to take. It’s true that this is not the best track for
overtaking but I will do my best to pass the cars in front of me from the left, from the right, from
everywhere, taking every opportunity to gain positions. The car has been a bit difficult to drive for
the whole weekend, except for the long runs, so I hope for a good race tomorrow.”

#26 Daniil Kvyat

“I think we got the maximum out of the package today, even though we might have been able to do
a few things better. But the race is tomorrow and we’ve seen from the past that we can still bring
home points having started from P13.”


#19 Felipe Massa

« I am disappointed with my lap today as I lost the rear in Turn 10 after braking, it’s nothing to do
with the car, it was my mistake. I had been doing really well throughout the rest of the session so feel
annoyed I didn’t do it when it really mattered. The race is long tomorrow and the car has good
potential so we have a lot to do. »

#77 Valtteri Bottas

« It has been quite a tough weekend up until now. I had to build a lot of confidence but it all came
together when it mattered and I managed to get a good lap. We have made some set-up changes
since FP3 and they worked well but it will be even better in the race. It’s difficult to overtake here and
so qualifying is important. It’s going to be a close race behind the Mercedes and so I am really
looking forward to tomorrow. »


#17 Jules Bianchi

“Such a shame. My second quick lap was really coming together and I had gained a lot of time in the
first two sectors, but I braked too late into turn 10 and ran wide. I was just pushing a bit too hard, but
we had the car and today we could have been close to a place in Q2, so we had everything to push
for. As ever, we have to take the positives and today they are that we have confirmation that we
have made a good performance step towards the Saubers and we can really focus on the cars ahead
now, not those behind. I have some work to do at the beginning of the race but if I can get a good
start I am sure we can pull something special back, so I’m really look forward to tomorrow now.”

#4 Max Chilton

“I’m really happy with that. I’m not sure we got the balance exactly where we would have liked it, but
in the end my second quick lap was pretty together and it all came good when it counted. That
session showed we have made a step forward with our new developments; there’s no doubt that we
are closer to the Saubers – and to Q2 contention – and we’ve pulled away from the Caterhams by a
good margin. As I say, there was definitely more to come from the car, so I’m pretty optimistic for the
race tomorrow. I think we can have a good fight.”


#9 Kamui Kobayashi

“Another difficult day with more of the same grip problems I had in both practice sessions yesterday.
We made quite a few changes to the car for FP3 but it still didn’t improve things enough, so we went
into quali with a package we knew we’d be struggling with.

“In quali we went for two single lap runs on options and the first was ok, but on my quick lap on the
second run I lost a bit of time behind Bianchi and had the same sort of balance problems I’d had in
all the practice sessions so I just couldn’t get any more out of the car. Maybe with a completely clean
lap I’d have been a couple of tenths up, but not enough to be where we’re aiming for.”

#10 Marcus Ericsson

“For me today’s been both good and bad. I’m pleased I’ve qualified ahead of my teammate for the
first time this year, especially because it’s at a track I really like and one everyone knows well, but
overall we’re obviously not happy with where we are with performance and we need to improve.

“In both FP3 and quali I had similar low-grip issues to yesterday and that’s costing a lot of laptime.
The car behaviour is unpredictable pretty much the whole way round the track and that makes
putting together a clean lap very difficult. However, we have to put this behind us and focus on the
race. Overall, we’re starting from the same bit of the grid as we have for most of the season and we
have to focus on having a clean race, maintaining the much improved reliability we’ve had since
China and grabbing whatever opportunities come our way. I want to leave Spain on a positive note
and we’ll all do everything we can to give us the best chance of making that happen.”

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