In today’s qualifying session at Hockenheim, the MERCEDES GP PETRONAS drivers, Nico Rosberg and Michael Schumacher, qualified in ninth and 11th positions respectively ahead of Sunday’s German Grand Prix.
Just 0.06s separated the pair at the end of Q2 with Nico progressing to the final session and Michael just missing out in 11th position. Nico went on to compete in Q3 with his quickest lap good enough for ninth place on the grid.
“I was hoping for a strong weekend here in Hockenheim in front of our fans but unfortunately I struggled a lot in qualifying today. It’s really disappointing and it seems that we are just not making our developments work as well as we hoped this weekend which we need to look into. I hope that we find the problem with the car otherwise it is difficult to explain why we are not closer to the front. I had a lot of oversteer and that made it really difficult as I had to keep coming down on the front wing levels which did not help. I will do my best tomorrow to achieve a good result but it will be difficult from this position.”
“There isn’t much more to say about qualifying other than the result was what was achievable for us today. Clearly it was disappointing because we had expected to be able to fight for fifth or sixth place but from the difference between our two cars, you can see our results are what the potential was. If I want to find something positive, it is that at least I will be starting from the better side of the grid and in the end, I prefer 11th to 10th place because of that. I had some issues with my brakes during qualifying but I do not rate that a real factor for the performance today. We are a bit stronger in race pace than in qualifying but we clearly wanted to achieve more for our fans. Let’s hope that tomorrow the race will develop in a way that we can still show them something.”
“We obviously had a disappointing qualifying today at one of our home races, particularly considering the promise that we showed over the practice sessions. With the changeable weather conditions over the weekend and a new aero package on the car, clearly we haven’t understood how to get the best from it here. That’s eventually shown in qualifying today and the drivers were not able to extract any more performance from the car than their respective positions. We will look at all of the data available and understand what is happening to ensure that we make better use of the package in the future.”
"Ninth place for Nico and 11th place for Michael are not what we hoped to achieve for the home race of Mercedes-Benz. Our team has worked very hard to get the upgrades on our cars in time for Hockenheim but we must admit that after the limited amount of dry running, we could not make best use of them. But that is the price that sometimes you unfortunately have to pay when the team needs to accelerate its development process from race to race. We had a similar qualifying outcome in Valencia and a fortnight later, the upgrades delivered at Silverstone. I am convinced that with more running and more knowledge, we will make our latest development step work. Disappointment and frustration will not be in our minds right now but quite the opposite and let's see what the race will bring tomorrow. Nico, Michael and everybody in the team will be fully focused on achieving the best possible result.”