23 June 2012
Glock to miss qualifying?
Timo Glock's stomach problems could leave the Marussia team with a driver dilemma at the European GP.
Following on from the revelation that he had been suffering from a stomach bug through Friday's free practice session, Marussia has since confirmed that there is a chance that Timo Glock could miss the rest of the European Grand Prix weekend.
Speaking to Sky Sports, team principal John Booth admitted that, despite appearing healthier when he arrived at the circuit on Saturday morning, Glock's problems returned after the final hour of practice, prompting him to seek medical advice over further participation in the weekend - a move later confirmed by an official statement.
"Timo has been fighting a stomach bug since Thursday," it confirmed, "He felt well enough to take part in yesterday's free practice sessions and had seemed to be improving. This morning, after FP3, he started to feel unwell again. It is clear that at this time, he is not sufficiently well to take part in a demanding qualifying session and needs to recuperate further.
“Timo and the team will now seek further medical guidance this afternoon. Until such time as this guidance has been received, no decisions will be reached regarding tomorrow's race. A further statement will be issued on Sunday morning.”
Team-mate Charles Pic shouldered the majority of the work on Friday, and continued to out-pace his more experienced colleague on Saturday morning, although both drivers completed 16 laps. Should the German not be able to continue in the cockpit in Valencia, where hot temperatures exacerbate his conditions, it remains unclear what route the team would take regarding a replacement. Spaniard Maria de Villota, while a popular option given this weekend's location, has no F1 experience and would not be considered, while Young Driver Programme members Max Chilton and Rio Haryanto are both in GP2 action in Valencia.
One option may be to 'borrow' a reserve from another team, as Sauber did with Pedro de la Rosa in Canada last season, but that is unlikely to happen before qualifying.
Should Glock feel well enough to participate in Sunday's race, the team will have to convince the stewards of his right to do so, although the German's experience and session times - as well as precedents set when allowing HRT to compete - should be on his side.
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