Paddy Lowe, Executive Director (Technical)
A very eventful qualifying session. We erred on the side of caution with an exploratory first lap on the intermediate tyre. But, as it turned out, the track was almost entirely dry from the outset – with the exception of two patches along the start / finish straight. During that initial out lap, a problem unfortunately occurred on Lewis’ car which we later identified as a failure of the MGU-H. It’s a shame for Lewis and we apologise to him for setting his weekend back. With one car remaining, we used the SuperSoft to get Nico through an unpredictable Q1 session and then ran the Soft for his first run in Q2. The logic here was to then have the Soft as a hoped-for race tyre in the event he could pull out a good enough lap to make it into Q3. He did that in impressive style, which stands him in good stead for tomorrow. In the Q3 shootout, Nico made a few errors on his first run but put together a fantastic lap on his second, taking a well-deserved pole. It will be an interesting race tomorrow, with Nico on a different compound to the cars around him and Lewis starting from the back. We still remain hopeful of getting both cars on to the podium, so that’s the target.