Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2020 – Qualifying
- George Russell qualified 18th and Nicholas Latifi 20th for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix
- George’s best time of Q1 was a 1:38.045 on his final effort
- Nicholas posted his quickest time of the session with a 1:38.443 on his second push lap
Dave Robson, Head of Vehicle Performance: In the evening qualifying session, both drivers struggled with tyre temperature whilst also trying to manage the traffic around them. This left them struggling for grip on both axles. Nicholas underestimated just how low the tyre grip was and span before he crossed the line to open his final lap. George had a better lap but was unable to replicate the performance from FP3 when the tyres were working well. It was a frustrating way to end the final qualifying session of the season. However, we will gain a couple of places on the grid tomorrow and will aim to race hard and finish the season as strongly as we can.
George Russell: It was really tricky out there. We really struggled with the tyres, Nicholas was also struggling, which was a bit strange as in FP3 the car was good. It’s the last race of the year tomorrow though and that is where it counts. The aim is to try and overtake and move forward where we can. We usually have strong Saturdays and struggle on Sundays so hopefully a poor Saturday means a good Sunday!
Nicholas Latifi: It was quite a disappointing qualifying. On the first set of tyres there were some mistakes, so there was a lot of margin to improve.There was quite a big queue on my second set in the last sector to start the lap, everyone was going excessively slow to try and get their gap and the tyre surface temperatures must have dropped quite low. When I got on the gas there was no grip at all and there was such a big snap that it caught me completely off guard and I spun. I felt there was a decent amount to improve from the first set, but it is what it is. However, I am excited for the last race of the season and I hope we can end the year on a high.