McLaren Racing’s Executive Director of Racing and Team Principal Andreas Seidl believes that Saturday’s qualifying for the Dutch Grand Prix at the Zandvoort circuit will prove to be crucial given that overtaking in traffic could be quite tricky come Sunday’s race. Speaking following Friday’s practice, Seidl commented saying;
It’s very nice to be here in Zandvoort for the first time with modern F1 cars. We’ve discovered a very interesting circuit with some special features – the banking is like nothing we experience elsewhere on the current calendar and presents interesting challenges for the drivers who can adopt a variety of lines. We expect qualifying tomorrow to prove crucial because overtaking on Sunday is going to be difficult.
“Today’s sessions were disrupted by red flags, which meant we acquired less data than we ideally would’ve liked in order to prepare for tomorrow. We did, however, gain enough knowledge of the circuit to ensure we have a very busy evening studying what we’ve learned, putting in place everything we need for a competitive performance in qualifying and for the race, which may be eventful at this ‘old school’ track.
Daniel Ricciardo was very impressed with the circuit saying:
“This track’s cool, it’s a lot of fun! I definitely enjoyed that. This morning I was relatively comfortable, this afternoon not so. We tried some things on the car that, in hindsight, I don’t think were the right direction. But, that’s what free practice is for. It made FP2 a little more tricky, but we’ll go back and learn from that. I think we’ll still be in good shape tomorrow, but today we were just a little bit off in FP2. There are some quick cars out there, so we’ve got our work cut out for us, but it’s a fun track and I’m really enjoying it.”
Lando Norris who finished eighth in the second practice session feels that the team has work to do overnight in order to improve the car ahead of qualifying.
“A tough first day. It was tricky with the traffic and difficult to get laps in with the red flags and stoppages. It began with a good feeling with the car, and we weren’t too bad, but we’ve got some work to do to be able to consistently get good laps in during qualifying, which I’m sure we can do. A decent day but work to do overnight.”