Caterham: Another very good day for our team
23 June, 2012
Jun.23 (Caterham Press Release) Drivers and team report on the European Grand Prix qualifying day at the Valencia Street Circuit in Spain, Round 8 of the 2012 Formula 1 world championship.
Heikki Kovalainen, car 20, chassis CT01-#3: “Today’s performance was the result of a great effort by the whole team. This morning we weren’t sure if we could do it or not but both runs in Q1 were really good. As the temperatures went up and the track kept evolving my car just felt better and better and I really got the most out of it on that final lap on the softs. In Q2 we opted to wait until the end of the session and see if we could improve on the Q1 time and while that wasn’t quite possible we achieved the target of beating both Toro Rosso cars and that obviously is a great feeling. I think tomorrow could now be really interesting for us – it looks like we have the chance to race them and that’s a significant step forward for our team. We’ve been getting closer to them in the last couple of races, but this track, the conditions here and the upgrades we’ve brought give us the chance to make good on our goal of joining the midfield, so now we need to translate today’s result into more good news tomorrow and keep moving forwards.”
Vitaly Petrov, car 21, chassis CT01-#2: “This has been a good day for the team with the upgrades we’ve brought here helping us take another step forwards. For me I had a good first run on the medium tyres and then was going well on the softs but made a small mistake which cost me a couple of tenths and around this track you only need to lose a small amount of time to drop a few places back. Now it’s time to focus on the race and anything could happen here. I think the key to a good race will be managing tyre degradation and so far this weekend we’ve been reasonably pleased with how our car’s been performing here on the long runs. We obviously won’t know until tomorrow how our nearest competitors will be able to look after their tyres, so we’ll just make sure we put in as good a performance as we can, get the car home and see where we end up.”
Mark Smith, Technical Director: “I am delighted with today’s performance, as is everyone in the team. We were reasonably optimistic that the updates we have brought here and will have in Silverstone would give us a chance to take another small step forwards and the proof of that is seeing Heikki put his car into Q2. Now we turn our attention to tomorrow’s race and the goal is the same as it has been all season – make sure we bring both cars home, take the fight to the cars just ahead of us and be there to take advantage of whatever opportunities arrive in the race.”
Riad Asmat, Caterham Group Chief Executive Officer: “Another very good day for our team as we continue to develop in exactly the right direction. Heikki’s Q2 appearance shows that we are clearly gaining pace as he was able to mix it with both Toro Rosso cars on the same tyres, with the same track conditions and similar fuel loads. This is down to the continuing hard work everyone in the team keeps putting in to help us achieve our goals, and when we can give Heikki and Vitaly the sort of performance that gives them a chance to really exploit their talents they repay everyone in our team with the sort of laptimes we have seen today.”