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One-stop no answer for poor qualifying at Williams

11 June 2012

Williams F1 went into Sunday's Canadian Grand Prix knowing that their prospects for any sort of success were pretty remote, thanks to their lowly grid positions.

Two hours later and their fears were confirmed, with neither Pastor Maldonado nor Bruno Senna threatening to score points in Montreal.

"It was a tough race today for both cars," admitted the team's chief operations engineer Mark Gillan. "Ultimately we didn't have the pace that we expected to have and which we showed during our long runs on Friday."

Bruno Senna's Canadian campaign was derailed early in the weekend when he crashed the car at the Wall of Champions during Friday practice, leading a disappointing qualifying performance and a 16th place start. Not even gambling on a one-stop strategy could do anything to revive his fortunes.

"I lost a lot of time on the first stint on the supersoft tyres," said Senna. "From that point on it was just a case of trying to look after the tyres as much as I could during the second stint."

Pastor Maldonado had started even further back on the grid, after a close encounter of his own with the Wall of Champions in qualifying compounded by a five-place grid drop for having to change the damaged gearbox on the car overnight.

"Unfortunately starting so far back after qualifying meant that I could not really have a good run at finishing in a points-paying position," said the Spanish GP winner. But he was also looking for positives in the day's experience.

"Today the car felt very consistent and was pretty well balanced," he said. "Our one-stop strategy meant that I had to manage the tyres carefully but when I did get to push in the final few laps the car was quick.

"We just need to focus on improving our qualifying pace so we start from a better position," he added. "The car's performance in long runs is something we can be optimistic about heading into the next race [at Valencia.]"


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