Williams had a disappointing qualifying session as beforehand they believed they could make it into Q3. Unfortunately Rubens was unable to by a little margin while Pastor Maldonado stopped on track with a still undefined technical problem.
Setting a time of 1:39.489 in Q2, Rubens Barrichello led the team in qualifying at the Valencia Street Circuit today. Rubens’ fastest time set on Pirelli’s Option tyre puts him in P13 on the grid for tomorrow’s European Grand Prix. Pastor Maldonado’s qualifying effort ended abruptly during one of his quick laps in Q2 when a problem with his FW33 stopped him on track at Turn 20. The as yet unidentified issue left Pastor unable to conclude the session and 15th on the timesheets.
Sam Michael, Technical Director:
We carried out further aero tests on the exhaust and front wing during this morning’s practise session. After reviewing the data we decided to revert to the standard exhaust system for qualifying as we were getting inconsistent floor performance from the latest version.
In qualifying, Rubens’ quick lap on new tyres was looking good for a place in the top ten but he had a lock up in the last corner. We then had an issue with Pastor’s car which caused him to stop on the circuit. We're still investigating the reason behind that. We'll be pushing for points tomorrow.
Rubens Barrichello, FW33‐03 CA420:
We should have made it into Q3 today. My plan for the race is to do the best I can and enjoy myself. We are only just outside the points and there are opportunities to overtake around this track so we will see what we can do.
Pastor Maldonado, FW33‐02 CA322:
We obviously had a problem with the car but we don’t know what it is; the engineers are looking into it. It’s quite strange because we haven’t had any other issues over the weekend. The car feels strong at the moment so I think we could have made it into Q3 today if it weren’t for that.