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Lotus F1 Indian GP Saturday Report
Old 26 Oct 2012 23:22
Category: F1
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A closely fought qualifying session at the Buddh International Circuit saw Kimi Räikkönen take seventh position on the grid whilst Romain Grosjean was just edged out of the top ten session, qualifying in eleventh place for tomorrow’s Indian Grand Prix.

Kimi Räikkönen, E20-05. Q: P7, 1:26.236. FP3: P5, 1:26.209
"We changed the car after this morning’s session and we were quite confident heading in to qualifying. Unfortunately, we didn’t seem to have any grip this afternoon so it was much more difficult than we thought. I’m quite disappointed to be starting from seventh as I thought we had a much better car than that."

Romain Grosjean, E20-03. Q: P11, 1:26.136 FP3: P10 1:26.664
"I was expecting better so I’m a little disappointed, however in terms of strategy P11 has one advantage as you’re the first car that can choose which tyres it will start the race on and I have a couple of new sets in my pocket for tomorrow. I wish I could have got through into Q3 and lacking two hundredths of a second to make it there was frustrating. On my second timed lap I was doing well, but for whatever reason the car snapped on me and I lost time. It was difficult to get everything right, but we’re looking strong to score some good points tomorrow."

Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director: "It’s going to be a tricky race to move forwards."

How do you assess today’s qualifying performance?
"It was a disappointing result. Kimi had a very good session in the morning and we were looking forward to a strong qualifying. Unfortunately, neither driver felt they had the grip levels they had enjoyed in the morning. Romain reported poor overall grip in all corners, whereas Kimi had issues with the low speed corners - a nervous car on entry and poor traction on exit - which are typical comments made about a car which is lacking in all round grip."

Where do you think the car should be on race pace?
"Qualifying seventh behind two Red Bulls, two McLarens and two Ferraris shows that we have the fourth fastest car here. We will do what we can in the race but we’ve seen very low tyre degradation and overtaking is difficult due to the circuit layout and DRS setup."

What strategies do the tyres allow?
"We think one or two stops will be the preferred strategies and will work tonight to see which will suit us best."

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Tags: 2012 f1 lotusf1

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