The Mercedes AMG PETRONAS F1 Team had a mixed day on Friday in Shanghai as on the one hand they led the way in the opening session this morning with Nico Rosberg beating Lewis Hamilton to P1, the team suffered a slight ignition problem with Rosberg’s car however they were able to get him back out in FP2,
In the second session, Rosberg was third fastest with Hamilton in fourth behind the two Ferrari’s of Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel.
Speaking following the days action, Rosberg stated:
It was good to jump in the car again today and a decent start to the weekend. The first session was compromised by the red flag – but we managed to try a few different things that worked well. It looks like we are quick here again – but in the afternoon we saw that Ferrari are also very quick, so we are definitely looking out for them and we’ll have a bit homework to do tonight. I’m happy that we have the old Qualifying format back for tomorrow and really looking forward to that. I hope the fans are too and we can put on a good show for them. It’s always great to be back here in China, I really like the track – but most of all it’s the people. The fans are so enthusiastic! They waited two days at the airport to see me, which is really humbling, so thank you to them.
Lewis Hamilton commented by saying:
It’s not been a bad day. I didn’t feel too comfortable with the car this morning but the team made some changes over lunch and it was much better in the second session. The weather has been surprisingly warm but with a lot of wind, which made it quite difficult out there through the high-speed corners. We’re seeing already that tyre degradation will be a big factor this weekend, which is pretty normal for this circuit but definitely something to watch out for on Sunday. I’ve had some amazing support here already. Every time I come to China I’m blown away by the amount of fans who come to see me. It’s only Friday and there were plenty of them over in the stands already with banners and flags, so a big shout-out to them.
Mercedes AMG PETRONAS F1 Team’s Executive Director (Technical) Paddy Lowe commented by saying:
An interesting day’s work. We saw quite a bit of disruption to the morning session, with multiple red flags. Then, as the chequered flag dropped, Nico’s car went into ‘Limp Home’ mode – which we diagnosed as an ignition problem and resolved over lunch. We also made a few setup adjustments to both cars during the break and the drivers were generally happier in the second session. As is becoming the pattern with this new tyre formula, we’re conducting research on three tyre compounds across two sessions at low and high fuel, hence the split programme across the garage. Despite the stoppages, however, we got all the data we needed from today’s running. We’re very close with Ferrari on both single lap and long run pace across all three tyre compounds, so we look set for an exciting weekend.