After Racing Point locked out the second row on the grid for tomorrow’s Hungarian Grand Prix, Mercedes Team Principal Toto Wolff prasied the Silverstone-based outfit’s performance.
The team that is set to be rebranded Aston Martin from 2021 has raised eyebrows since the pre-season testing with its excellent performance level. Racing Point was unable to unlock its full potential in the two races at Spielberg due to technical problems and a rain-affected qualifying session at the Styrian Grand Prix, but, in Hungary, the Silverstone-based squad showed its true performance level, qualifying right behind the Mercedes duo of Lewis Hamilton and Valteri Bottas.
The team that traces its roots to the Jordan team has stooden in the spotlight not just with its performance, but also its car design. Its RP20 has been referred to as ’Pink Mercedes’ due to the undeniable similarities with Mercedes’ 2019 car, the W10. Following Renault’s protest against to front and rear brake ducts, the FIA has started an investigation into the matter to find out whether the team kept itself within the confines of the Sporting Regulation.
Wolff has praised Racing Point’s best qualifying result, He said: „I'd like to say congratulations to Racing Point for their strong performance in qualifying, I'm really happy to see them locking out the second row."
Ahead of the weekend, Wolff indicated that he was worried about his team’s performance at the twisty Hungaroring. However, Mercedes has presented itself in a league of its own since the first practice session on Friday.
"I'm really happy with today's qualifying result, both Lewis and Valtteri were evenly matched and they did a great job to lock out the front row, especially with the Hungaroring always being a tricky circuit when it comes to putting together a hot lap. I think the conditions were just right for us today, a bit cooler than we've experienced before, and the result shows all the hard work trackside, in Brackley and in Brixworth is paying off. Now we have to focus on having a clean race tomorrow and bringing both cars home.
Racing Point’s Team Principal Otmar Szafnauer was delighted that his drivers could convert the car’s potential into excellent starting position after torrential rain hindered the team’s efforts during last weekend’s qualifying session at Spielberg.
“Today’s qualifying result is a tremendous team effort and it feels great to see our cars lockout the second row of the grid. We knew we had the pace in the car, but it’s satisfying to deliver that speed when it mattered during qualifying.”
Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll had so much pace in hand that they were able to get thorough into the last qualifying segment on Pirelli’s medium compound which should provide them with a significant advantage given the high tyre wear on the soft C4 compound.
„I’m proud of the way we approached the session and that we progressed to Q3 on the medium tyres – a decision that should open up more strategic opportunities tomorrow. Of course, it’s only Saturday, and tomorrow is what really counts, but we’ve put ourselves in a great position to have a strong race too,” said Szafnauer.