F1 »

'Troublesome' day hides Williams' 'true pace'

Fifteenth and 17th on the grid may not look like much for Williams following a 'troublesome' day in Melbourne, but Rubens Barrichello admits he is encouraged by the new FW33's raw pace
Williams was left lamenting a 'troublesome' day Down Under as both of its drivers encountered difficulties ahead of and during qualifying for this weekend's F1 2011 curtain-raising Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne – but encouragingly, Rubens Barrichello reveals the Cosworth-powered FW33 is 'quicker than we thought'.

The precedent was arguably set in FP3 when a gearbox issue for Brazilian veteran Barrichello and a spin for Venezuelan rookie Pastor Maldonado limited running, and both men saw their qualifying efforts come to an abrupt end in Q2.

For Barrichello, it was particularly embarrassing, as the only driver in F1 history with more than 300 grand prix starts under his belt uncharacteristically put a wheel onto the grass approaching the infamous Turn Three on his first lap, leaving the 38-year-old frustratedly beached in the gravel trap and a lowly 17th on the starting grid.

“Today was unfortunate,” reflected the likeable Paulista. “I made a mistake, went wide and spun. We have to wait and see what our pace is, but it was quicker than we thought it would be. On another positive note, we've saved our tyres for tomorrow, which could be important.”

Maldonado, meanwhile, will begin his maiden F1 outing directly ahead of his ultra-experienced team-mate in 15th, the 26-year-old's efforts to progress any further stymied by yellow flags and a flat-spotted tyre.

“I made it through Q1 fine and everything was going well,” reported the reigning GP2 Series Champion. “On the first set of tyres in Q2, I had two yellow flags; with the second set, I had a big flat-spot and had to abort the run. The session was exciting, though! We need to improve a bit, but overall the car is good and I feel optimistic. I'm looking forward to tomorrow, and I really think points are possible.”

“We've had a troublesome day,” summarised the Grove-based outfit's technical director Sam Michael, “and although we have to improve, the end result does not reflect our true pace. With Pastor's spin and the oil leak on Rubens' gearbox, the mileage we were able to cover in practice was considerably restricted and caused us to be conservative with some of our set-up choices for the race.

“We had another 'off' in qualifying, this time with Rubens, but Pastor kept his head down and is now looking ahead to a solid race. Tomorrow's focus is firmly on scoring points with both cars. It will also be interesting to see the moveable rear wing working as intended and delivering some exciting overtaking!”



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
25.03.2011- Friday Practice 1, Rubens Barrichello (BRA), Williams FW33
26.03.2011- Qualifying, Rubens Barrichello (BRA), Williams FW33
25.03.2011- Friday Practice 1, Rubens Barrichello (BRA), Williams FW33 with a message for japan
25.03.2011- Friday Practice 1, Rubens Barrichello (BRA), Williams FW33
25.03.2011- Friday Practice 2, Pastor Maldonado (VEN), Williams FW33
26.03.2011- Saturday Practice,Pastor Maldonado (VEN), Williams FW33
25.03.2011- Friday Practice 2, Pastor Maldonado (VEN), Williams FW33
26.03.2011- Saturday Practice, Pastor Maldonado (VEN), Williams FW33
26.03.2011- Saturday Practice, Pastor Maldonado (VEN), Williams FW33
26.03.2011- Saturday Practice, Pastor Maldonado (VEN), Williams FW33
Esteban Gutierrez joins Ferrari as test and reserve driver
F1 veteran David Coulthard wins Race of Champions
McLaren confirms Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button
Fernando Alonso and Ron Dennis at McLaren
McLaren confirms Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button
McLaren confirms Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button
Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button alongside Kevin Magnussen. Pic credit: McLaren
Christian Fittipaldi in the Minardi M192, 1992

Start the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.




© 1999 - 2014 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.