Bruno Senna's miserable weekend at the 2012 F1 Grand Prix of Singapore continues, with news that his Williams
needed a new gearbox overnight after the battering it had received in practice and qualifying on Friday and Saturday.
"Following damage yesterday Bruno has a 5-place penalty for replacement gearbox so will start 22nd today," Williams
confirmed in a post on social networking site Twitter on Sunday morning.
Senna hit the wall in FP2 on Friday, came within a whisker of doing the same again in FP3 on Saturday morning, and then completed his hat-trick in the second part of qualifying meaning that he was unable to finish in higher than 17th position.
"I think pressure shows when you are making mistakes into braking areas, going off and hitting kerbs and flying off the track," said Senna, insisting that the actual errors were very slight despite how it might have looked.
"You can see the amount of damage on the car is small, meaning that the actual contact with the wall is not big," he said, conceding that he just hadn't left a big enough margin of error on his runs. "And of course an error happened, there's no forgiveness ... I have to accept that I made mistakes but I'm not kidding myself over it."
Senna hinted that his lowly starting position was going to call for him to adopt an unorthodox race strategy on Sunday.
"Doing what everybody else is doing is not going to gain me any positions. I need to gain as many positions on the first stint as I can to try and jump people," he said. "The odds of a safety car tomorrow are high. It's going to be an eventful race and we can never count ourselves out. It's a two-hour race and hopefully we're going to be right up there at the end."
"With some luck," he added - something that had been conspicuously lacking for the beleaguered Brazilian this weekend.
HRT's Pedro de la Rosa
also needed a replacement gearbox before qualifying on Saturday, and so also receives a penalty - although in his case he'd only managed to qualify in 24th position on the back row of the grid in any case.
"Although I already knew that [in the race] I would be starting last because of the penalty, I tried to complete a quick lap, but it wasn't to be," said de le Rosa of a frustrating qualifying session. "The car has improved but we didn't complete a good qualifying session. We were using a new set of tyres and they were blocking a lot so we were unable to complete a clean lap."
De le Rosa said he was trying not to be too downcast: "I take with me the fact that the car has improved quite a bit and that is important ahead of tomorrow because it will be a tough race. It will be tough for everyone but we have to race intelligently to not overwork the brakes and manage the tyres well. As always, we will give it everything to do the best we can."