Red Bull Racing had a strong opening day on Friday ahead of Sunday’s Russian Grand Prix at the Sochi circuit.
In this morning’s session Daniel Ricciardo debuted the team’s aeroscreen and drove an installation lap with the screen. The Australian reported that there were no visibility issues with the device.
Ricciardo ended the morning session in sixth place with a fastest time of 1m 39.650s while in the second session he ended up in fifth place with a fastest time of 1m 39.084s completing 54 laps over the course of the day and speaking following the session he commented by saying:
It was different this morning running with the aeroscreen, not having the wind rolling on me and the engine sound was different as well. The visibility was pretty good, so first impressions were fine, it was driveable. Where we have the structure in place is pretty much where the mirrors are so I wouldn’t say it hindered any more than we are now in terms of visibility. Peripheral vision was fine as well. The talk about open cockpits has been going on for a while and that’s fair enough. It would be great to keep it as it is but obviously with accidents that have happened, especially more recently, I think not exploring this seems a bit disrespectful. The plan is to probably try it again on a different circuit with different scenery, a bit more undulation or something like that or maybe a night circuit. The lights could be interesting how they reflect off the screen so we’ll give it a bit more running.
Daniil Kvyat who competing at his home track ended the morning session in eighth place completing 26 laps with a fastest time of 1m 40.218s while in the second session he completed 32 laps with a fastest time of 1m 39.193s and speaking following the day of track action he commented by saying:
I think all in all it was quite successful running today. We did a useful amount of laps, and did short runs and long runs. The tyres will be very challenging here – to understand which one works better for which conditions and so on, so it will be interesting tomorrow to understand the strategy for qualifying. We have plenty of data to analyse tonight, we have to really see what the options are and what the best things to do are for Saturday and Sunday. This track has always been quite interesting in terms of tyre behaviour, so we really have to make that work. It’s quite close between us and Williams at the moment, it’s one of the tracks which should suit them the best this year. If we can take the fight to them and maybe get ahead of them, that’s our goal, that would be good.