Infiniti Red Bull Racing head into Sunday’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix at the Yas Marina circuit hopeful of a strong result after what has been by their standards a very disappointing season for the Milton Keynes based outfit which has not yielded any victories for the Renault powered team.
It is understood that despite initially terminating their contract with Renault that Red Bull will in fact continue to supplied by the French manufacturer next season. An engine deal with a partner has been confirmed however it has yet to announced to the media.
For Sunday’s season finale, Daniel Ricciardo will start the race from 5th place just behind Sergio ‘Checo’ Perez and just ahead of Valtteri Bottas and speaking following the session the Australian commented by saying:
I’m happy with the session; I think we’ve done really well. We were able to improve in every session and the weekend so far has been pretty smooth. Our lap time kept on getting better and better and that’s when you know the session’s gone well. You find a few tenths each run. Last year, one of my best qualifying performances was here and today sort of backed that up. Our target for tomorrow is definitely to keep the Williams behind us and find a way around Perez. He was really quick today. I hope they fade a bit in the race. It should be interesting tomorrow. We won’t have an easy time passing them on track but at least it’s a track where you can overtake. The DRS zones are good and you can definitely have a go.
Daniil Kvyat will start the race from ninth place in the sister Red Bull and will start the race just ahead of Carlos Sainz in the Toro Roso and just behind Felipe Massa’s Williams. The Russian, in his first season at Red Bull has a best result of second place which came at the Hungarian Grand Prix earlier this season.
Kvyat is currently in seventh place in the championship on 94 points and is one place ahead and ten points ahead of team mate Daniel Ricciardo. Speaking following the session, Kvyat commented by saying:
Not running in FP3 unfortunately comprised our day and the car didn’t feel right. We were hoping it wouldn’t affect us too much this evening, but it did and I just didn’t feel comfortable out there. Not running in P3, after the small issues which we had yesterday, meant we had to go into qualifying a bit blind. Luckily we did a few long runs in P2 yesterday which was quite useful and will be helping us tomorrow. We will try to make up some places then, so hopefully we will be able to take something out of it.
Following a tough season in which they will finish the season in fourth place in the championship, Red Bull Racing Team Principal Christian Horner commented by saying:
It was a fantastic lap from Daniel, possibly one of his best of the season, to line up fifth for the race tomorrow. He set a blistering pace in Sector Three, which made up for the time lost in Sectors One and Two. Dany matched Daniel’s pace in Sectors One and Two but unfortunately lost out in Sector Three and will line up ninth. We can realistically expect to have a strong race from these grid positions and we will be looking to capitalise on that tomorrow to end the season with the best results possible.