Italian Grand Prix – Friday Practice Results

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Key Moments:

00mins: KR & JDA out for long opening stints on hard tyres
10mins: KR tops the times in the early stages, JDA finding his feet
21mins: KR back out on track, JDA in for feedback
45mins: KR & JDA emerge sporting medium tyres
65mins: JDA takes to the track for another long run; improves to move just outside the top 10
73mins: KR launches out of the garage for another track attack; consistently lapping with the leaders
90mins: Chequered flag; KR P6, JDA P12


With the tarmac warming up nicely throughout the course of the day, free practice two got underway with the instant emergence of both E20’s; Kimi and Jérôme heading out for long early runs on the silver marked hard compound Pirelli tyres.

The early stages saw the Finn topping the time sheets as his Belgian counterpart – initial bedding in period now complete after the morning session – began to steadily find his feet with consistent lap time improvements.

At the halfway stage the pair made a switch to the white marked medium compound tyres – the first appearance of the weekend for the softer rubber – and duly set about further analysis work as the lap times began to tumble.

While Kimi dipped in and out of the top five places throughout the closing stages of the session, Jérôme gradually began to climb the leaderboard as his confidence grew; eventually flirting with the fringes of the top ten to wrap up a strong opening day at the wheel for both drivers.

Free practice 2:

Pos  Driver              Car                   Time       Gap       Laps
 1.  Lewis Hamilton      McLaren-Mercedes      1m25.290s            32
 2.  Jenson Button       McLaren-Mercedes      1m25.328s  + 0.038s  35
 3.  Fernando Alonso     Ferrari               1m25.348s  + 0.058s  17
 4.  Felipe Massa        Ferrari               1m25.430s  + 0.140s  43
 5.  Nico Rosberg        Mercedes              1m25.446s  + 0.156s  41
 6.  Kimi Raikkonen      Lotus-Renault         1m25.504s  + 0.214s  42
 7.  Paul di Resta       Force India-Mercedes  1m25.546s  + 0.256s  40
 8.  Nico Hulkenberg     Force India-Mercedes  1m25.547s  + 0.257s  36
 9.  Sergio Perez        Sauber-Ferrari        1m26.068s  + 0.778s  32
10.  Michael Schumacher  Mercedes              1m26.094s  + 0.804s  38
11.  Mark Webber         Red Bull-Renault      1m26.104s  + 0.814s  35
12.  Jerome d'Ambrosio   Lotus-Renault         1m26.157s  + 0.867s  36
13.  Sebastian Vettel    Red Bull-Renault      1m26.394s  + 1.104s  31
14.  Pastor Maldonado    Williams-Renault      1m26.404s  + 1.114s  42
15.  Daniel Ricciardo    Toro Rosso-Ferrari    1m26.724s  + 1.434s  33
16.  Kamui Kobayashi     Sauber-Ferrari        1m26.730s  + 1.440s  17
17.  Bruno Senna         Williams-Renault      1m26.783s  + 1.493s  39
18.  Heikki Kovalainen   Caterham-Renault      1m26.841s  + 1.551s  39
19.  Jean-Eric Vergne    Toro Rosso-Ferrari    1m26.864s  + 1.574s  36
20.  Vitaly Petrov       Caterham-Renault      1m27.222s  + 1.932s  36
21.  Timo Glock          Marussia-Cosworth     1m27.944s  + 2.654s  36
22.  Charles Pic         Marussia-Cosworth     1m27.968s  + 2.678s  36
23.  Pedro de la Rosa    HRT-Cosworth          1m28.575s  + 3.285s  34
24.  Narain Karthikeyan  HRT-Cosworth          1m28.779s  + 3.489s  21

Free practice 1 – report:

Key Moments :

00mins : KR follows JDA out for an install lap on hard tyres
20mins : KR emerges for his first timed run
23mins : KR rattles the kerbs at the Rettifilo chicane
25mins : JDA takes to the track for his first flying laps
30mins : KR briefly goes fastest
45mins : JDA out for his next stint
65mins : KR back in business for some more tarmac action
76mins : JDA gets some more track time ; long runs for the Belgian
84mins : KR out for a final run
85mins : Yellow flags ; Fernando Alonso’s Ferrari stops at the entrance to the Rettifilo chicane
88mins : Yellow flags once again ; this time Pastor Maldonado’s Williams parks at Lesmo 1
89mins : KR takes off once again ; this time over the kerbs at the Roggia chicane
90mins : Chequered flag ; KR P7, JDA P15

Summary :

An ideal start to the day here at the Autodromo di Monza, with clear blue skies above and soaring track temperatures below putting a smile back on most faces around the paddock after the downpours of Spa last weekend.

As the session got underway, it was Jérôme D’Ambrosio who was first to venture out onto the 5.703km circuit as he took the wheel of E20 No.10 for the first time at a Grand Prix weekend – his only previous running in the car having come during a brief stint at the Mugello test earlier this year.

Kimi followed shortly afterwards ; each completing their install laps on matching sets of silver marked hard compound Pirelli tyres before returning to base for the usual routine of checks and adjustments.

The Finn was the first of the pair to put in a flying lap, as differing programmes began to pan out in line with the Belgian’s first bout of significant track time with the team.

The usual format of long runs and plenty of data analysis ensued, with notable moments coming in the form of some spectacular aerobatics from Kimi over the kerbs at the Rettifilo and Roggia chicanes, in addition to a pair of yellow flags at the end of the session as Fernando Alonso and Pastor Maldonado ground to a halt out on track.

FP1 times:

Pos  Driver              Car                   Time       Gap       Laps
 1.  Michael Schumacher  Mercedes              1m25.422s            26
 2.  Jenson Button       McLaren-Mercedes      1m25.723s  + 0.301s  29
 3.  Nico Rosberg        Mercedes              1m25.762s  + 0.340s  26
 4.  Fernando Alonso     Ferrari               1m25.800s  + 0.378s  22
 5.  Felipe Massa        Ferrari               1m25.861s  + 0.439s  27
 6.  Lewis Hamilton      McLaren-Mercedes      1m25.944s  + 0.522s  30
 7.  Kimi Raikkonen      Lotus-Renault         1m26.046s  + 0.624s  25
 8.  Sergio Perez        Sauber-Ferrari        1m26.323s  + 0.901s  26
 9.  Mark Webber         Red Bull-Renault      1m26.390s  + 0.968s  24
10.  Pastor Maldonado    Williams-Renault      1m26.504s  + 1.082s  19
11.  Sebastian Vettel    Red Bull-Renault      1m26.508s  + 1.086s  18
12.  Nico Hulkenberg     Force India-Mercedes  1m26.518s  + 1.096s  21
13.  Valtteri Bottas     Williams-Renault      1m26.641s  + 1.219s  26
14.  Kamui Kobayashi     Sauber-Ferrari        1m26.746s  + 1.324s  23
15.  Jerome d'Ambrosio   Lotus-Renault         1m27.180s  + 1.758s  29
16.  Jules Bianchi       Force India-Mercedes  1m27.192s  + 1.770s  22
17.  Daniel Ricciardo    Toro Rosso-Ferrari    1m27.373s  + 1.951s  25
18.  Jean-Eric Vergne    Toro Rosso-Ferrari    1m27.789s  + 2.367s  24
19.  Heikki Kovalainen   Caterham-Renault      1m27.855s  + 2.433s  27
20.  Vitaly Petrov       Caterham-Renault      1m28.578s  + 3.156s  20
21.  Charles Pic         Marussia-Cosworth     1m28.751s  + 3.329s  26
22.  Timo Glock          Marussia-Cosworth     1m29.207s  + 3.785s  21
23.  Pedro de la Rosa    HRT-Cosworth          1m29.331s  + 3.909s  21
24.  Ma Qing Hua         HRT-Cosworth          1m31.239s  + 5.817s  26

Lotus team quotes :

Kimi Raikkonen – 6th: “It was an okay day. We tried a few different things with no issues and I’m happy with the car. Our long run pace was not too bad and we weren’t too far away from the fastest lap set today either. There aren’t many corners here, but running with low downforce means the grip is not as good under braking and cornering through the chicanes. It’s not easy to get the perfect lap here but maybe we can improve tomorrow; we shall see.”

Jerome d’Ambrosio – 12th: “Today went pretty well overall and it feels good to be back in the car. It’s not an easy task stepping in at the last minute; there’s a lot to take in and with a low downforce track like Monza it can be quite tricky to find the limit, but we completed a busy schedule and put in a lot of laps which is a good start. It’s difficult to say where we are right now, but we made steady progress between the two sessions and my aim for tomorrow is to take another step forwards and see where we go from there. So far so good.”

Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director: “It’s nice to have a straight-forward Friday with dry running; it’s our first for a while! The lower downforce here means we focused on the various compromises; getting the car to work in the corners, balancing the need for a soft car to ride the kerbs versus a stiff car to enable high speed change of direction and so on. We feel we’ve made good progress with the running we’ve had. Jerome has done a great job; chipping away at the time difference between him and Kimi without any problems while absorbing all the procedures and information we’ve thrown at him.”


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