Report – Fourth and tenth places for Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen respectively, in the third free practice session for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix at the Yas Marina circuit. This afternoon, the Scuderia drivers each had a different programme. Fernando put him in some laps right at the start of the session so that the mechanics could get an early start on the planned power unit change ahead of qualifying and the race. The Spaniard did a run on the Softs and then fitted Supersofts, completing a total of 8 laps, the fastest in 1.42.653.
Kimi continued fine tuning his car, adopting a normal programme, running 14 laps, the best one stopping the clocks in 1.43.038.
|5||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull/Renault||1m42.679s||1.255s||19|
|7||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m42.773s||1.349s||14|
|9||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m42.809s||1.385s||20|
|12||Jean-Eric Vergne||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m43.352s||1.928s||20|
|13||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m43.360s||1.936s||19|
|14||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m43.501s||2.077s||18|
Report – The second free practice session of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was a difficult one for Scuderia Ferrari, as dusk fell on the Yas Marina circuit. Fernando Alonso had to stop out on track, between turns 19 and 20, after just 2 laps, with an electrical problem. Therefore getting through the programme was all down to Kimi Raikkonen who did 33 laps, finishing off the comparison of the Soft and Supersoft tyres and doing some long run race simulations. The Finn continued working on car set-up before fitting the Supersoft tyres, with which he set a time of 1.43.489, which was good enough for seventh.
|4||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull/Renault||1m42.959s||0.846s||33|
|6||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m43.183s||1.070s||32|
|9||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m43.546s||1.433s||38|
|11||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m43.746s||1.633s||37|
|13||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m44.068s||1.955s||32|
|14||Jean-Eric Vergne||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m44.157s||2.044s||39|
Report – Fernando Alonso was third and Kimi Raikkonen twelfth in the first free practice session for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix at the Yas Marina circuit. The Scuderia Ferrari drivers did 22 laps each, working on fine tuning the car and beginning an evaluation of the Soft tyres Pirelli has brought here along with the SuperSoft.
The track was very dirty at first, so hardly any running was completed in the first half hour. Gradually, as conditions improved, the times began to come down. Fernando’s best lap was a 1.45.184 on his way to third place. Kimi stopped the clocks in 1.46.131, having to settle for 12th on the time sheet.
|4||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull/Renault||1m45.334s||1.858s||30|
|5||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m45.361s||1.885s||23|
|6||Jean-Eric Vergne||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m45.718s||2.242s||17|
|7||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m45.835s||2.359s||32|
|9||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m45.983s||2.507s||23|
|10||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m46.030s||2.554s||24|
Kimi Raikkonen: “It was a very busy day and, particularly in the first session, we struggled a bit to find the right balance on the car. The programme included various set-up tests and, probably partly because of the high temperatures, my car felt rather nervous. Between the two sessions, we decided to make a few changes and in FP2, with lower temperatures, things improved, also in terms of how we compared to our competitors. My best lap wasn’t perfect, I made a small mistake. Overall, the work we did today produced positive results and this evening’s analysis of the data will deliver a lot of useful information to help us improve for qualifying and the race.”
Pat Fry: “At the Yas Marina track, the first and third practice sessions don’t tell you much, because of the effect of the high temperatures on the tyres. Usually, the level of grip gets better as the sun sets and in FP2 the track and air conditions produce a more similar picture to the one we can expect in the race, allowing for a better idea of car balance and a clearer understanding of the tyres. Here, it’s important to find the right compromise between aerodynamic and mechanical grip for the twisty section, trying to make turn-in easier in the corners while also have good top speed on the long straights. As was the case in Brazil, tyre management will be a key factor. For the first time at this track we have the Soft and Supersoft tyres and this choice opens up various strategy choices, also taking into account the limited life of the softer compound. In the second session, an electrical problem meant Fernando had to park the car on track and the guys are now fixing the problem for tomorrow’s practice. This incident is further proof that reliability, down to the smallest detail, is a major challenge for all teams, even right to the last race. It won’t be an easy weekend, but we’ll be trying to score as many points as possible, given that every position is worth double.”
Report – Kimi Raikkonen was seventh and Fernando Alonso was eighth in the third free practice session for the Brazilian Grand Prix. Contrary to forecasts, the Interlagos track was dry this morning as the Scuderia Ferrari drivers prepared for qualifying, evaluating the behaviour of both Pirelli compounds being used here in Brazil, the Medium and the Soft. The fight for pole might well be played out in the rain, but this morning’s work was still of value as tomorrow’s forecast is for a dry race. Raikkonen did 15 laps, the best in 1.11.316, with Fernando doing 8, stopping the clocks in 1.11.399.
|5||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m11.188s||0.742s||11|
|10||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m11.834s||1.388s||26|
|11||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull/Renault||1m11.967s||1.521s||21|
|15||Jean-Eric Vergne||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m12.235s||1.789s||29|
|17||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m12.324s||1.878s||17|
|18||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m12.942s||2.496s||25|
Report – The Scuderia Ferrari drivers finished third and seventh in the second free practice session for the Brazilian Grand Prix. The afternoon session started with very high air and track temperatures and this made it harder to set good lap times. In the second part of the 90 minutes, the track temperature actually dropped and, even on the Soft tyres, the times got slower again.
The Scuderia drivers continued to work on set-up and a comparison of the Medium and Soft compounds brought here by Pirelli. In the afternoon, Kimi did 32 laps the quickest in 1.12.696 to secure third place on the time sheet. Fernando Alonso covered 20 laps, stopping the clocks in 1.13.122 to go seventh.
In the last third of the session, as usual, the team began working on long runs and with just over 20 minutes left, Fernando parked the car at the side of the track as the engine caught fire. His power unit, which had completed a high mileage, had failed and the incident brought out the red flags. When the session resumed, Esteban Gutierrez also parked on track in the Sauber. This compromised almost everyone’s long runs. Alonso’s power unit change does not involve a penalty.
|4||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m12.956s||0.833s||24|
|8||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m13.254s||1.131s||35|
|9||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull/Renault||1m13.333s||1.210s||28|
|13||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m13.882s||1.759s||32|
|17||Jean-Eric Vergne||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m17.171s||5.048s||5|
Report – Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen ended the first free practice session for the Brazilian Grand Prix in fourth and eighth places respectively. Early in the session there was very little grip and the lap times were slow, partly due to the brand new surface, which is still seeping oil. Its condition improved rapidly so the times came down gradually throughout the session.
Fernando and Kimi did 30 laps each, evaluating the Medium tyres and working on the car set-up. Alonso’s best lap was a 1.13.742 which was good enough for fourth on the time sheet, while Raikkonen stopped the clocks in 1.14.114, to go eighth.
|3||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m13.723s||0.959s||39|
|6||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m13.827s||1.063s||26|
|10||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m14.197s||1.433s||27|
|12||Luiz Felipe Nasr||Williams/Mercedes||1m14.522s||1.758s||22|
|13||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m14.678s||1.914s||33|
|14||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull/Renault||1m14.902s||2.138s||24|
|16||Daniel Juncadella||Force India/Mercedes||1m16.030s||3.266s||17|
Kimi Raikkonen: “This was a better Friday than past ones and thanks to the work we did on the car, we got a good response from the changes we made in both sessions. In the first session we concentrated on set-up work and aerodynamic measurements. Because of my usual problems with the front end, we tried to eliminate anything that might have been causing them. In the afternoon, on the Soft tyres, the lap times were good and I’m sure that, without traffic, I could have done even better. Because of the red flags, we were unable to do a race simulation, but everything can change over the next days, because the weather forecast is very uncertain. In the dry, the car is going quite well, but we know that, if it rains, the track conditions could change things around.”
Pat Fry: “The new track surface meant that understanding tyre behaviour was immediately the main focus of our attention and so, in both sessions we tried to do as many laps as possible. In the first session, the weather gave us a lot of room to manoeuvre and the times came down lap after lap as the track improved. In the morning we did some testing and worked on car balance, then in the afternoon, evaluating the consistency of the two compounds was complicated by the rising temperatures, with the asphalt almost 20 degrees higher than in the morning. On the one hand, we got a reasonably clear picture of where we stand in these conditions. Now we have to bear in mind that, if it rains, we would have to start again from zero, but in dry conditions it will also be very important to understand to what extent graining will affect performance. Fernando’s power unit had done a very high mileage and we were well aware that this would have been its last Friday on track, although it’s a shame to have lost the final 20 minutes of track time.”
“We’ve been trying various set-up options with Kimi and he seems happier,” he said.
“We’ve been obviously reviewing, it’s been a constant battle for us to try and work out, give him the front end that he wants in the car. We’re a little bit closer and that shows that if we can give him a car that gives him the right feedback he’s right there and right on the pace.”
Fry also dismissed recent rumours in the Italian media claiming Ferrari had suffered a setback with their 2015 design.
“We set ourselves some strong, challenging development targets on both the power unit side and both the chassis side,” he explained. “There’s obviously a huge gap we need to catch up. I think things are progressing reasonably well.”
“Have we reached our target? No, far from it, but I guess there’s four-and-a-half months to go, still, at least. But things are coming along an improving on both fronts, really, so I think there’s been good progress there.
“All the teams are working well together, only time will tell how much performance everyone else is going to put on. We’re doing the best we can, I think, with the resource we’re applying.”