F1 Singapore - SAT - Qualifying - Second row start for Lewis and Jenson


Singapore/Marina Bay Circuit, Singapore, Sep 25, 2010

Third and fourth on the grid - and hungry for more on Sunday

- MP4-25A-02
- P3 programme: 3rd, 1m49.000s (+0.972s), 12 laps
- Qualifying:
- Q1: 8th, 1m48.296s (on Primes)
- Q2: 4th, 1m46.042s (on Primes)
- Q3: 3rd, 1m45.571s (on Options)

“I guess I’m pretty happy with third place on the grid. However, you can always do better, and I reckon we had a decent chance of pole today. My first lap in Q3 was a good, clean lap - but I was too close to Jenson (Button).

“I could feel his wake ahead of me, so I lost a little bit of downforce, particularly in the last sector. On my final lap, I got the gap, but I didn’t get the lap - but that’s motor racing. Still, it’s great to know we’re a real force here in Singapore.

“We didn’t know how fast we’d be this weekend - so to find out that we’re only a couple of tenths off pole is a great result for the whole team.

“Our starts have been pretty good too, so we can both hopefully jump at least one guy ahead of us tomorrow. In other words, we can fight for a win from where we are.”

- MP4-25A-01
- P3 programme: 13th, 1m50.060s (+2.032s), 12 laps
- Qualifying:
- Q1: 6th, 1m48.032s (on Primes)
- Q2: 5th, 1m46.490s (on Options)
- Q3: 4th, 1m45.944s (on Options)

“Q3 was very tough: I pushed very hard, because I was the first car out of the pitlane and we wanted to make sure we were able to fit two runs in; but in the first sector I damaged the rear tyres a little. After that I struggled a bit.

“So, for the second run, I thought I’d take it a bit slower on the out-lap, and drive the first sector a little easier, but I didn’t have enough tyre temperature when I got to the first sector - so I struggled. But the second and third sectors were both very good - I just didn’t nail the first sector, and that cost me a few tenths.

“But fourth isn’t too bad; we’re a lot closer to the Red Bulls than we feared we might be. The Ferrari looks quick, but I’m reasonably happy - much happier than I was after my qualifying here last year. For tomorrow, the start will be the key.

“My aim will be to pass Sebastian [Vettel]. The Red Bulls’ pace off the line hasn’t been great recently, and I also think we can have a good race because our pace on high fuel has looked good around here.”

Team principal, Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

“Both Lewis and Jenson performed brilliantly here in Singapore tonight. We’re within a couple of tenths of the pole, we made a lot of good progress yesterday and today, and we feel we’ve got a very good race car for tomorrow.

“Bearing in mind our comparatively lacklustre pace at Monaco and the Hungaroring, two relatively slow circuits, I’m very encouraged by our performance here in Singapore, which is also a comparatively slow circuit.

“That improvement is the result of a lot of hard work by a lot of very good people, and I thank them all. As for the race, we now feel we can take the fight to anyone, and that’s what we intend to do tomorrow.”

* Official photos and details courtesy of VODAFONE MCLAREN MERCEDES *

Copyright © 2010, Mercedes-Benz-Blog. All rights reserved.

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