Virgin’s qualifying preparation hampered by more reliability problems


In their second race Virgin Racing qualified 21st and 22nd, ahead of Hispania GP but behind rival newcomers Lotus Racing. Timo Glock will start ahead of his rookie teammate Lucas di Grassi.

Glock’s preparation for qualifying was hampered by further reliability problems in the free final practice session. “We had another tough morning so all I could do is try to get the best out of the car in Qualifying. We were carrying more fuel than we would have liked because of a pick-up problem, otherwise I think we would have been able to have more of a fight with Lotus. Anyway, we'll do what we can to prepare for tomorrow and see what the race brings.”

Teammate di Grassi said he could have done better in qualifying. “Free practice was okay for me and the car was feeling quite good. I was certainly feeling some improvement. I didn't manage to maximise the performance of the car in qualifying as I made a mistake on my quick lap. I'm looking forward to the race as the car is behaving quite well with heavy fuel.”

Technical director Nick Wirth outlined the problems that the new team are still facing. “Lucas had a trouble-free morning although he had an unexpected low fuel pick-up problem, which ultimately badly affected both himself and Timo in Qualifying. Timo had another blocked gearbox filter, which meant he went into Qualifying having not tried the option tyre and with a similar fuel pick-up issue. So in the end I think both guys did a good job in Qualifying considering the extra fuel they were carrying and the lack of practice time during the weekend. Sometimes it may not seem like it, but we are getting on top of the issues as they arise and we'll see if we can make further progress in the race tomorrow.”