“With the small gap between Malaysia and China, we are not planning to bring too many updates to the car, but we will have a few things to try,” revealed the Hinwil-based outfit's technical director, James Key. “It is amazing for me going back to China, as it was the first race I had with the team last year, and a year has just flown past.
“I think, given the nature of the track, that it could be quite good for our car. The track has some interesting challenges. It has a long straight at the back, some quite tricky slow-speed corners in the middle of the lap and there are these unwinding and winding-in profiles of corners, which are important for traction and braking stability, particularly under lateral load.
“It will be interesting to see how the tyres cope and how the car copes with that, with much depending on how the weather conditions are. I think what we have seen between Melbourne and Kuala Lumpur is, with different track temperatures and surfaces, that the tyres have behaved in quite a different way to what was expected. It will be interesting to see if that trend continues in China, or whether it will be a bit more predictable. Obviously, the hope is that we can continue to fight for points and show a decent level of performance.”
Meanwhile, both Pérez and Kobayashi will benefit from a Red Bull Racing-style exhaust in the Turkish Grand Prix in Istanbul next month – one race earlier than close rival Williams is scheduled to introduce its own – with the addition tipped to provide as much as an extra half-second in terms of lap time.