Formula 1 News

'Pretty good day' for Caterham

Friday has gone according to plan in Malaysia, according to Caterham driver Giedo van der Garde
Friday, March 22, 2013

March 22nd, 2013 (F1Plus / Chris Cameron-Dow) - Giedo van der Garde and Charles Pic have had a productive Friday in Malaysia, completing 49 and 47 laps respectively and setting lap times quicker than the Marussia of Max Chilton. Van der Garde was

The Caterhams drivers were able to evaluate both dry tyre compounds as well as the intermediate tyre when the rain came down in Free Practice 2. A thorough Friday including evaluation of tyre degradation, long run performance and race setup work went smoothly. The drivers are now preparing to continue the work on Saturday morning.

It is possible that qualfiying and the race could both be wet, which makes today's running on the intermediate crucial. Caterham did not have the opportunity to evaluate the full wet tyre, which would have simply overheated and degraded in the conditions - full wets are designed to deal with more water and therefore do not perform well on a semi-dry track.

This is what the drivers had to say after Friday practice:

Charles Pic: “Friday has been ok for us and it’s mostly been looking at tyre degradation and balance. There was a little too much understeer in the first session this morning so we tried a couple of setup changes and they seemed to work. In the afternoon we had to change the plan a bit when the rain started but that gave us a chance to run seven laps on the intermediate tyres which could be important for Saturday and Sunday. We also had our first runs on the medium tyres here and wear rates were ok on those. I had a small mistake on my quickest lap on the performance run and that cost me quite a bit of time so I think there’s more to come tomorrow, especially in qualifying.

“We’ve also been working on improvements in the garage between runs, cutting down the turnaround times, and that’s working well. Overall it’s been a good week in Malaysia so far for me. It’s been busy but I’m enjoying it – we’ve had a great welcome wherever we go and I’m sure that’ll continue all weekend.”

Giedo van der Garde: “I think we’ve had a pretty good day. We’ve completed a lot of laps on all the tyres except the full wets and run through the whole program. In FP1 it was the normal runplan, focusing on the hard prime tyres and starting to understand deg levels on those – our pace on that compound and the wear rates were both encouraging, but we’ll have to work a bit more on getting them up to temperature efficiently and then keeping them in that first phase of degradation as long as possible.

“In FP2 we did a couple of short and long runs on the primes and one on the medium tyre, as well as a stint on the inters when the rain started. It wasn’t the intense rain we had on track yesterday but it was still enough to mean we needed to run the inters and with rain possible in quali and in the race that’s more good data for us. It’s also good for me to get as many laps as possible done on the intermediates – it’s all part of the learning process and with full running in both FP1 and FP2 today, compared to Melbourne, we’re in a better position for tomorrow and Sunday than we were last weekend.”

FP1 results:

Pos No Driver Team Time Gap Laps
19 21 Giedo van der Garde Caterham-Renault 1:40.728 3.793 17
21 20 Charles Pic Caterham-Renault 1:41.163 4.228 18

FP2 results:

Pos No Driver Team Time Gap Laps
20 20 Charles Pic Caterham-Renault 1:40.757 4.188 29
21 21 Giedo van der Garde Caterham-Renault 1:40.768 4.199 32

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