AT&T Williams’ drivers, Rubens Barrichello and Pastor Maldonado, displayed some competitive race craft at the challenging Yeongam circuit for today’s Korean Grand Prix. The early stages though, despite promising, did not lead to a points scoring finish.
Originally on a three stop strategy, Rubens made a clean start on the super soft tyre from his 18th place grid slot to gain three places off the line. His second stop for a set of prime tyres was to be his last visit to the pits in the 55 lap race, Pirelli’s soft tyre proving its considerable durability to carry him through the field to finish the afternoon in P12. Pastor’s early form, which had promoted him to 11th by lap 17 from 16th on the grid, was latterly compromised; firstly by a drive through penalty on lap 22 and ultimately by a terminal engine issue on lap 31.
Mark Gillan, Chief Operations Engineer:
Initially on split three stop strategies, with Pastor starting on the soft tyre and Rubens on the super soft, both drivers made strong progress off the line. Rubens fought hard throughout the race and showed particularly good pace on his last set of soft tyres to finish in 12th after switching to a two stop strategy with the safety car. Pastor also fought hard but unfortunately picked up a drive through penalty after a late entry to the pitlane. His race then ended early with an engine-related problem.
Our pace was good today and I was able to fight with quicker cars. Once again the safety car didn’t go my way and that cost me positions. Having said that, I still enjoyed the race and I had fun overtaking. It’s just a pity we didn’t score.
I had a good start and my pace was looking ok. Unfortunately, I made a mistake coming into the pits which cost me a drive through penalty. My race ended when the team spotted a problem with the engine and I had to retire. Not a great weekend, but I’ll now shift my focus to a better result in India.