Saturday Qualifying was of contrasting fortunes for Ferrari. Felipe Massa proved that the Scuderia have made a significant gain in performance since Bahrain by achieving fourth on the Grid for tomorrow’s race. However such a strong performance could not be replicated by Kimi Raikkonen, who was eliminated in the first segment of Qualifying after failing to go out on a second run.
Despite reliability remaining of great concern, Ferrari are hopeful of a strong race with the team hoping Massa can achieve a podium.
Felipe Massa – 4th: “We demonstrated that the car has improved and is much more competitive than at the other races. I am happy to be back at the front end in qualifying and the credit for that goes to everyone at the Scuderia, who have worked day and night these past weeks to get so many new elements on track so quickly. There is still a long way to go, but we are working in the right direction which is a good sign for the future. From fourth on the grid, my aim is to fight for a podium finish. At the start, the KERS could be very handy in helping me make up some places and then we know we can count on running a good race pace. I feel more comfortable at the wheel: the car is more stable and doesn’t slide so much everywhere as it did in the past.”
Kimi Raikkonen – 16th: “We made a stupid mistake. It’s a real shame because the car was much better than the one we had in the previous races and we had every chance of getting a good result. I didn’t get any particularly good laps on my only run in Q1, but we thought my best time would be enough to make it to Q2 and so I stayed in the garage. There’s no point in saying whose fault it was, because we can’t do anything about it now. I certainly wasn’t keen on doing another run as I was thinking of saving a set of new soft tyres for Q3 and the team reckoned we could make it. Tomorrow’s race will be tough and we will try and make the best of the situation. The F60 has improved, maybe not yet to the level of the best, but we’re definitely getting closer.”
Chris Dyer: “We have worked so hard to bring new components here for the F60 and the result of those efforts was confirmed today by Felipe’s performance. Unfortunately, we were unable to fully exploit this improvement, because we made a serious mistake in our evaluation of Q1, believing that Kimi’s time would have been good enough to get him through to the next stage. It was a serious error which is really regrettable. We will try to make up for it tomorrow in a race which he will start from way down the order. Felipe is on a good strategy and although we wait to see the fuel levels of the other drivers, we can aspire to a podium finish. As usual, reliability will be the number one priority.”