Friday P14 and P15 no worry for Lotus

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F1 Grand Prix, GP Canada, Circuit Gilles Villeneuveca

Kimi Räikkönen and Romain Grosjean took to the track for the first practice sessions at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montréal ahead of Sunday’s Canadian Grand Prix. A dry morning session was filled with running in anticipation of a wet afternoon. The afternoon yielded a dry session too; the rain not coming until immediately afterwards.

Kimi Räikkönen, E20-03:
Free practice 1: P15, 1:17.014, 42 laps
Free practice 2: P15, 1:16.652, 33 laps

“It was an okay day for us. We expected rain in the afternoon so we used the super soft tyres in the morning to make sure we could do some long runs, and we completed everything we needed to do today as the rain didn’t come until later. I’m not 100% happy with my setup and I think we’re missing a trick somewhere. It’s not a major issue, but I know we can go faster. Let’s see how it goes tomorrow, anything can happen and hopefully it’s a little warmer as that usually seems to help.”

Romain Grosjean, E20-04:
Free practice 1: P14, 1:16.890, 36 laps
Free practice 2: P14, 1:16.360, 29 laps

“Today was my first time at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve and I really enjoyed it. It’s not an easy track, and the weather wasn’t what we’re expecting for the rest of the weekend so it’s a shame not to get some running in warmer conditions. We’ve spent a lot of time learning how the car behaves here and trying a few different things with the setup. We have a good amount of data, but obviously we’ll need to work just as hard tomorrow if the temperatures are higher. The car felt good and we did a few laps on the super soft tyres as well, so overall it was quite a useful day.”

Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director:
- In FP1 we attempted to condense the programmes of both FP1 and FP2 into a single session. The red flag period interrupted this somewhat.
- Some of the expected rain came before the FP2 session, but not sufficiently to disrupt running so we were able to complete a good number of laps, despite another red flag period.
- We evaluated our new Montréal specification rear wing and ran race simulations.
- Our base setup appears to work solidly, with the Montréal specification rear wing delivering the expected performance.
- We are still working on refining the setup to ensure both drivers are happy.
- Our position in the times does not reflect our pace due to the different programme we ran today.

“We ran the option tyres in first practice with some high fuel loads. The rain held off so we ended up running just one set of tyres for second practice which is why our times looked a little bit slower than others’. Neither driver was 100% happy with their car, so we spent some time working with setup changes. Romain felt his car was a little too biased to the front, but he was much happier with the changes made. Kimi paid attention to improving his car over the kerbs as it was a little bit too harsh to start with; steadily improving through the day. I’m confident our finishing positions in FP2 will not reflect where we’ll be in qualifying tomorrow.”