Red Bull Racing had a strong qualifying session today at Malaysia with this time Sebastian Vettel qualifying on the front row of the grid. Daniel Ricciardo ran trouble free to a solid 5th best time.
Sebastian Vettel, 2nd: “My heartbeat was rising very quickly in Q1 when we realised there was an issue. We came in and restarted the car, which seemed to solve the problem and after that it was fine. It was good to go out and get another feel for the car in the wet conditions. Q3 was not perfect; I would have loved to have had a second go – on my first attempt I felt there was a little bit of time to gain here and there. It was very close, maybe too close, as if you look at the margin it was possible to go faster, but then if Lewis would have had another chance he would have improved also so, would should, could, at the end of the day it’s good to be on the front row and it should be the good side of the grid for tomorrow – it depends on how our start is, but I’m happy with the result.”
Daniel Ricciardo, 5th: “When it rains here, it definitely pours and the weather was our biggest challenge today. Finding space on the track can be tough and the visibility is so bad, the spray comes from hundreds of metres away so just getting some clean road is something you really have to try and take care of. I was a bit off in Q3, so I’ve got to try and understand why, but nonetheless I think top five is not too bad, considering the conditions. I think we’ve definitely got a better chance in the wet. Mercedes were really quick this morning in the dry, so it would be good if it’s like this tomorrow. Sebastian had quite a big gap to me, so I’ve got to see where I can improve really as his pace was really good and close to pole.”
Christian Horner, Team Principal: “An exciting session today that wet weather in Malaysia always brings and a great performance from both drivers to navigate their way through to Q3. Both drivers potentially had better laps in them had it not been for traffic in what was always going to be a slightly scrappy session, but to have Sebastian on the front row and Daniel in P5 was beyond our expectation and a great starting position for tomorrow’s grand prix.”
Thierry Salvi, Renault Team Support Leader: “A strong result from the team in difficult conditions. We’re learning a lot with this new power unit, even more in these wet conditions. Both drivers had a lot of work managing with the engine and the battery. It was a very busy qualy for both. We had a bit of a scare when Seb had a battery problem in Q1 but we were able to fix it during the session. Seb did a very good job based on the fact that it was his first proper wet running this year. Again, another good performance from Daniel who is adapting to the new Power Units extremely well.