Williams are hoping to take advantage of the unpredictable nature of Canadian Grand Prix to score good points in today’s race after qualifying eleventh and twelfth.
Rubens Barrichello, who out-qualified his teammate Nico Hulkenberg by just four-thousandths of a second, thinks that the cocktail of high break wear, high probability of safety cars, and uncertainty over tyre wear, could play into the hands of the team.
“I know from experience that the race really demands that you look after your brakes, so I am confident that together with the tyre issues here that there will be a good opportunity to do well if we get everything right,” said the Brazilian.
Hulkenberg was a bit annoyed to be beaten so narrowly by his teammate in qualifying, but agrees with Barrichello that there will be chances to gain ground in the race.
“Although it was a little frustrating to just be pipped by Rubens, I am confident that the tyre management issues will provide lots of strategy options and should make for an interesting race and plenty of opportunity for us tomorrow,” said the German, who is racing in Montreal for the first time this weekend.
Patrick Head was a guest of the BBC commentary team for the third practice session, during which he predicted only a mid-to-low Q2 performance in qualifying. He was no doubt relieved to be proved overly pessimistic. Sam Michael, speaking after qualifying, explained that the team had found some extra pace between that session and qualifying.
“We made a good progression from practice to qualifying today and only missed out on the top ten by a narrow margin,” said Michael. “Now we're concentrating on our race strategy and tyre selection, which will be critical for the race.”