Robert Kubica was pleased to overcome handling issues to qualifying in the top ten for Renault.
The Polish driver will start tomorrow’s race in sixth position, despite nearly losing his R30 while turning into Copse corner.
However, Vitaly Petrov was not able to follow his team-mate into the final segment of qualifying, after failing to warm his tyres correctly during his final run in Q2. He will start sixteenth.
Robert Kubica – 6th: It hasn’t been the easiest weekend so far and we have been struggling with the overall feeling and pace of the car. We’ve been changing lots of things, but it has been difficult to put everything together. It felt like a great result just to get into Q3, so I’m very happy to qualify in P6 and pleased with the lap time – especially because, on the first lap of my final run, I had a big moment in turn 1 and nearly lost the car at 270km/h! Looking to the race, we know how difficult it is to overtake at Silverstone. As usual, the start, the first lap and the pit stops will be the crucial points in the race.
Vitaly Petrov – 16th: At the start of the session everything seemed quite good: the lap time was there and the speed was there. After my first run in Q2, the engine cut out in the pit lane, and my mechanics did a fantastic job to get me back out before the end of the session. But on my final lap in Q2, I didn’t warm up the tyres very well so I need to analyse the data from my lap. For the race tomorrow we know how difficult it is to overtake here, but as usual I will try my best.
Eric Boullier, Team Principal: Today’s qualifying session was a mixed one for us. Robert drove superbly to deliver the perfect lap on his final set of tyres in Q3 and his sixth place is an excellent result. Once again we are pleased to be ahead of one Ferrari and one Mercedes. Vitaly’s session was more complicated because there was a fuel pick-up problem at the end of his first run in Q2, which cut the engine and put him under pressure for the rest of the session. His result was not what we were hoping for, especially after an excellent lap in Q1 and the speed he had shown earlier in the weekend. I hope tomorrow he can show some good race pace and make up some positions.
Alan Permane, Chief Race Engineer: This weekend hasn’t been the most straightforward for us, but it’s difficult to pinpoint where we are struggling. Overall I think Robert’s sixth place is pretty much where we deserved to be, but it was a real fight to get him up there. He and his engineers did an excellent job in Q3 and managed to get the best out of the tyres, which brought him up to P6. Obviously P16 is disappointing for Vitaly, but we had a fuel pick-up problem during Q2. The mechanics did a great job to get the car turned around in time for another run, but it wasn’t enough to get him into Q3. It’s a real shame for Vitaly because he had matched Robert this morning and did a strong job in Q1.