14/10/2012

Saturday Analysis

Formula One
FP3 Results: Hulkenberg 10th (1:38.932), di Resta 14th (1:39.156), Karthikeyan 23rd (1:42.845).
Qualifying Results: Hulkenberg 8th (1:38.266), di Resta 14th (1:38.643), Karthikeyan 24th (will start 23rd)(no time set).

The results in FP3 pretty much translated into similar qualifying results. Although it has to be said that the qualifying results, especially in the middle of the field, were a little random; they were skewed by Ricciardo's stricken car bringing out the yellow flags at the end of Q2. Much to my surprise, and against my prediction, there were no penalties for anybody so it's P8 & P14 for the SFI drivers whereas Narain Karthikeyan will start P23.

The aim for the race, for the two Sahara Force India drivers anyway, will be to get both cars in the points. In terms of race pace, both VJM05's seemed relatively competitive through the practice sessions - the pace for tail end points is there for sure. Perhaps the Lotus' cars could be passed, but anything higher than 5th will be difficult without unusual circumstances/unreliability to other cars.

Speaking of Lotus; Nico Hulkenberg starts in what has been dubbed "the Grosjean zone". The German driver needs to be very careful and try to avoid any possible accident. This should be a fantastic race - make sure you tune in!

The review quotes are here.

A couple of things i want to clear-up:

1) Narain Karthikeyan failed to set a qualifying lap yesterday due to a brakes failure, in fact, the whole disc broke! Here is a post-quali tweet from Narain: visit here.

2) Post-qualifying, Paul di Resta was all but confirmed as a Sahara Force India driver in 2013, thanks to his sponsors: story here.

World Endurance Championship
FP3 Results: Chandhok 4th (overall & in class)(1:30.432).
Qualifying Results: Chandhok 6th (overall & in class)(1:30.410).
Warm-Up Results: Chandhok 4th (overall & in class)(1:30.444).

Pretty consistent running for the JRM team in terms of laptime. All three drivers seem to be getting the maximum from their car this weekend. They'll start P6 with the hope of moving up the order during the race. Don't forget the cars in P1, P2 & P3 are manufacturer teams (Audi & Toyota) - it's unlikely they'll be beaten (excluding unreliability) so really, the aim is P4.

Formula Renault 2.0
FP1 Results: Engineer 12th (2:24.220).
FP2 Results: Engineer 23rd (2:27.560).
Qualifying One Results: Engineer 16th (2:23.082).
Qualifying Two Results: Engineer 11th (2:21.617).

Shahaan did better than i had expected given his lack of testing on this circuit (Spa-Francorchamps, read here). In FP1, the Indian driver was on the pace straight away in sectors one & three. Sector two was where the he lost his time, he was +0.912 seconds behind the session leader.

FP2 laptimes were skewed as Shahaan set his quick lap in wet conditions. Sadly, Q1 was also a little skewed, this time due to traffic.

However, everything came together in Q2 and Shahaan did a brilliant lap to finish P11, +0.758 down on the leader - that's a good improvement from FP1, he should be very happy with that.

So it's 16th & 11th on the grid for the two races. Encouraging starting positions, the question is, can he make progress up the field? We'll let you know post-race!

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