Caterham F1 Team have had a good Friday of running, both in the dry and in the wet. Their pace today however suggests they are in for another battle with the Marussia cars this weekend.
Charles Pic: “Friday has been ok for us and it’s mostly been looking at tyre degradation and balance. There was a little too much understeer in the first session this morning so we tried a couple of setup changes and they seemed to work. In the afternoon we had to change the plan a bit when the rain started but that gave us a chance to run seven laps on the intermediate tyres which could be important for Saturday and Sunday. We also had our first runs on the medium tyres here and wear rates were ok on those. I had a small mistake on my quickest lap on the performance run and that cost me quite a bit of time so I think there’s more to come tomorrow, especially in qualifying.
“We’ve also been working on improvements in the garage between runs, cutting down the turnaround times, and that’s working well. Overall it’s been a good week in Malaysia so far for me. It’s been busy but I’m enjoying it – we’ve had a great welcome wherever we go and I’m sure that’ll continue all weekend.”
Giedo van der Garde: “I think we’ve had a pretty good day. We’ve completed a lot of laps on all the tyres except the full wets and run through the whole program. In FP1 it was the normal runplan, focusing on the hard prime tyres and starting to understand deg levels on those – our pace on that compound and the wear rates were both encouraging, but we’ll have to work a bit more on getting them up to temperature efficiently and then keeping them in that first phase of degradation as long as possible.
“In FP2 we did a couple of short and long runs on the primes and one on the medium tyre, as well as a stint on the inters when the rain started. It wasn’t the intense rain we had on track yesterday but it was still enough to mean we needed to run the inters and with rain possible in quali and in the race that’s more good data for us. It’s also good for me to get as many laps as possible done on the intermediates – it’s all part of the learning process and with full running in both FP1 and FP2 today, compared to Melbourne, we’re in a better position for tomorrow and Sunday than we were last weekend.”