– Nicholas Latifi qualified 17th and George Russell 18th ahead of Sprint Qualifying at the São Paulo Grand Prix
– Nicholas improved on each of his three runs throughout the session, all on the soft compound tyre, ultimately setting a best time of 1:09.897
– George also improved throughout Q1 and posted a 1:09.953 using the soft tyre on his final run but, like Nicholas, was unable to progress from Q1
Dave Robson, Head of Vehicle Performance: Today was not easy and we struggled more than we expected, especially in the tricky middle sector where the drivers were never able to hustle the car as they wanted. Fortunately, our long run pace in FP1 was better than our low fuel pace and so we will be looking to make some places tomorrow and again in the Grand Prix on Sunday. It won’t be easy, but this is a good circuit for racing and the warmer conditions on Sunday will offer further opportunities.
Nicholas Latifi: Right from the start in FP1 today it was tricky, as we just couldn’t get the feeling from the car that we needed. We always seem to make a step in Qualifying, but we didn’t quite manage to make a big enough step today. I would’ve loved to progress into Q2 but the good thing about this format is that we have another chance to make up some places in Sprint Qualifying tomorrow. The last time we had this format was in Italy and we managed to move forward, so hopefully there are some opportunities for us on Saturday.
George Russell: Unfortunately, it didn’t quite come together for us today. I couldn’t get the tyres working and it was a little bit gusty out on track, so it wasn’t particularly favourable for us. My lap felt OK but nothing special. It’s only the second time in 19 races that we’ve not progressed into Q2 so we need to put our thinking caps on and understand where we can find some improvements. FP2 will be a better indication of our race pace but I think Sprint Qualifying will still be a tough one for us tomorrow.
Brazillian Grand Prix 2021 – Qualifying