At Williams there were smiling faces in the pits as the team's first qualifying of the year confirms there this year is likely to be much better than 2011. While Pastor Maldonado qualified 8th, teammate Bruno Senna was blocked in Q2 and will have to start from P14.
Mark Gillan, Chief Operations Engineer:
It has been a very satisfying day for the team with Pastor qualifying in a very creditable eighth position and Bruno, who unfortunately didn’t get a clear lap, finishing in 14th. The whole team is really looking forward to tomorrow's race, and we hope to capture our first points of the season.
Pastor Maldonado, FW34-02 RS27-5322/2, P8:
"It was a great start to the season for the team today. We have shown that we are competitive, and we now need to keep pushing. The car has been improving throughout the weekend, and we need to keep going in that direction. It’s now down to our pace and strategy for tomorrow’s race."
Bruno Senna, FW34-03 RS27-5340/2, P15:
"It’s a bit of a lottery when you go into qualifying without having had a full day of running on Friday, but the car feels good. Pastor qualified in the top 10 which is a really good sign for the team. I wasn’t particularly happy with my lap, but it’s the first qualifying session of the year. We have 19 more to go and I am sure with a little more experience, everything will come together. Tomorrow is a different day, so we will see what we can do."