Poor starts contributed to a mid-field race for the AT&T Williams team at Turkey’s Istanbul Park circuit today. A mechanical issue dropped Rubens Barrichello from 15th on the grid down to 20th, from where he pushed hard throughout the race to recover to 14th.
Team mate Nico Hulkenberg picked up a front puncture in the opening lap, the consequent stop bringing him out to fight from 23rd position. In the remaining laps, Nico worked his way up to P17 to conclude the race from where he started.
Rubens Barrichello: "I had a problem with the clutch at the start which is a shame because it’s been fine all weekend so we will have to investigate that. We pitted earlier than we had originally planned because our pace was better than the cars in front. Our stop was quite slow because we had a problem with the front wheel. Later on, I then had an issue with the throttle. Our overall race pace wasn’t too bad but we need to resolve these issues that we are having."
Nico Hulkenberg: "It hasn’t been a good weekend for us and our race pace wasn’t good enough today. I also had an incident on the first lap which meant I had to pit early. We have to keep working hard to find more performance."
Sam Michael, Technical Director: We finished roughly where we qualified today. Rubens had a problem with anti-stall off the start, it wasn't a driver issue. Shortly after his pitstop, he then had a throttle control problem which dropped him back down the order again. The problem reduced so he was able to continue the race, but we'll be stripping the car down to identify what caused it. Nico came together with another car on the opening lap which damaged his front wheel. That forced him into a premature pitstop, so the rest of his race was consumed with tyre management. For the forthcoming events, our objective will be achieving better qualifying and race performance."