Giedo van der Garde has outqualified his teammate at Caterham, despite not having the new front wing at his disposition. While he is obviously pleased, Charles Pic laments a lack of balance.
Charles Pic, car #20, chassis CT03-06: “It’s been a bit of a tough weekend so far. We’ve put a few new parts on the car and have tried several setup options to get the most out of them and find a balance I can use, but it hasn’t worked yet. FP3 was ok – I didn’t have a completely clean lap so we knew there was a bit more time to come after that session, but in qualifying the car just didn’t feel like it was working as well as it had in the morning session. I’m not too sure why but we’ll go through all the data and find out if there’s anything we can do for tomorrow.
“On the positive side, we know we have good long run pace and I think we can have a decent race tomorrow. The weather’s supposed to be a bit warmer and that’ll suit our car better than the cooler conditions we’ve had so far this weekend. Our pitstops have been good all year and our tyre degradation here has not been too bad on both compounds, so I think we should be ok for the race.”
Giedo van der Garde, #21, chassis CT03-04: “I’m obviously really pleased with how today’s gone, both in FP3 and qualifying. We made a few changes to the car overnight to try and find a balance with the new parts and it’s worked out really well. I’m not running the same package as my teammate here – I have most of the new package except the front wing so we went a slightly different way than Charles on setup and even though I didn’t get a really quick lap in during FP3 I could feel we were going in the right direction. In qualifying it came good and on the second run I had a clean outlap, got the tyres working well, and then a really good run to set my best quali time of the season so far.
“Days like today show how my learning curve keeps improving. I’m working better with the engineers in every session on track and they are finding out more about how to help me get the most out of the car. This is the sort of performance I’d targeted for when we had new parts on the car so I’m really pleased for me, the whole team and everyone who’s backed me that we can deliver like we did today. There’s more to come, in the race tomorrow and with more new parts for the rest of the year and this is a great way to kick off the European season.”