Marussia was boosted on Friday when the team noticed so many support messages for Maria De Villota from drivers and teams in the paddock. With Maria still in the mindset of everyone at the team, there were other things to worry about as well, as both cars were fitted with a major update package.
The team were touched by the camaraderie in the Paddock as Free Practice 1 got underway, with drivers up and down the pitlane demonstrating support for Maria De Villota by including a specially-produced ‘Orange Star’ - Maria’s emblem - within their helmet liveries.
On track, Marussia debuted a substantial new upgrade package, comprising new exhausts, floor, front wing and side pods, and the early signs from today - albeit running was compromised by the wet weather - are positive.
Timo Glock, #24, P16:
“It has been a bit of an unusual Friday for everyone today due to the weather conditions. The day started very wet, so we didn’t get much running in FP1. It rained again during FP2 but we squeezed a longer run in towards the end when it stopped. However, it was very difficult to drive with the track condition and there was a lot of aquaplaning. I think we still have a bit of pace to find in the wet and tomorrow is likely to be quite unpredictable, so it will be difficult to find the right set-up choice.”
Charles Pic, #25, P19:
“It was a slightly frustrating day in respect of the fact that it was very important to get some engine calibration runs with the new exhaust system. These are normally things we can work through quite quickly but in today’s conditions it was much harder to do all the required runs. This information is crucial for the rest of the weekend though. It was good at the end of FP2 to get a run on the Extreme Wet tyre, which I haven’t had much experience of all year, so this will help us prepare for the rest of the weekend with the weather we are likely to get.”
John Booth, Team Principal:
“Coming into the weekend with both cars carrying the full upgrade package, we were obviously looking for dry weather to allow us to optimise the set-up to the new aero developments. The weather has made it difficult to get any meaningful comparison data and because of the wet weather we have also had to be quite prudent with the number of laps we attempted. Both drivers have done an excellent job in difficult circumstances, as have the team, and the day was approached with their usual display of calm professionalism. It is obviously very difficult to judge the full potential of the upgrade, however the early signs are that we do not appear to have any reliability or performance issues.”