Silverstone: post-qualifying interview with Kimi
A strong performance from Kimi this afternoon sees the Finn sit in P6 on the grid for tomorrow’s British Grand Prix, despite running without KERS throughout the session having had relatively little experience on the Pirelli wet tyres. Now, the Finn is eager to take advantage of what could be a frantic race here at Silverstone tomorrow…
Q: Kimi, P6 on the grid for tomorrow’s race ; what are your feelings after qualifying ?
KR: It was ok but could have been a bit better. We should probably have started on the intermediates in the last part of qualifying ; then we could have got more heat into them and gone for more than one lap. It’s impossible to say how much difference it would have made, but it was a difficult call and we made the best we could of the situation.
Q: Did you feel the track was ready for intermediates from the start of the final session ?
KR: Like I said, it was a tricky decision. Where there’s standing water the intermediates don’t work so well as the full wets, but there were also a lot of places where it was not so wet and they worked much better than the other tyres there. It’s always going to be tricky in some places with whichever tyres you choose so it’s just about picking the ones that will be better overall. The last lap I did was definitely much better, even though it started raining again in the last few corners which made it quite slippery, even on the full wets.
Q: How much did losing the KERS affect your pace today ?
KR: We didn’t have KERS for the whole session. The effect is not so big in the wet as you can’t use it as effectively as in the dry, where it would cost maybe four tenths. You feel it most on the straight – the loss of power – so it still has an effect, but not so much as in normal conditions. We tried changing the battery twice but it looks like that wasn’t the problem. We’ve been working hard to figure it out and we’re confident it will be fixed for tomorrow.
Q: How difficult were the conditions out there today ?
KR: It’s not ideal to have so much rain as there’s so much spray and you get a lot of aquaplaning, but it is what it is and it’s the same situation whenever you have weather like this. We’d never start a race in the conditions we saw today. When there’s a lot of water at the beginning of the race you can run under the safety car until there’s not much aquaplaning and the track is almost ok for intermediates, but the spray will be the big issue ; it’s there no matter what which makes it tricky as you can’t see the standing water and it’s harder to spot your braking and turn-in points.
Q: Have you been happy with the E20 so far this weekend ?
KR: The car is strong in the high speed corners and we’ve shown good speed here ; it would be better for us if it was dry but we look pretty strong. In these conditions you can get it right or quite easily get it wrong ; sometimes you get lucky and sometimes you don’t with the rain. The race could be quite tricky if the weather stays the same, but for sure it’s been much easier for me here than in Malaysia which was the first time I had used the Pirelli wet tyres. We’ve had a good amount of wet running today so we have a better idea of how far to push the car which always helps. Let’s see what tomorrow brings…