Jolyon Palmer: “The fact it’s a night race is pretty interesting”


Credit: Octane Photographic Ltd.

Jolyon Palmer is hoping that his previous win in Bahrain, although in GP2, will stand him in good stead for this weekend’s Grand Prix.

His previous Formula 1 races this year in Australia and China have proven disappointing but that success still prices a motivating factor even three years on.

I quite like the track and I have won there in the past so that definitely spurs me on after a couple of Grands Prix which have fallen short of expectations,” he said.

I’ll jump in the car on Friday and be working with my crew to get the maximum possible from each session then we absolutely are targeting points from the race as we’ve seen the potential of the car; all I need is a clean weekend.”

Despite having three practice sessions, it is difficult to gain relevant race data due to the race’s later starting time compared to the morning sessions. So not only do the drivers have wind and sand to contend with but also a cooler track than they have been able to practice on. Its plentiful supply of straights does at least allow for overtaking.

There is a lot of track evolution as it is very sandy at the start of the weekend, and then the track gets more and more rubber down, so conditions change a lot,” he continued. “The weather is almost always sunny, but it can be quite windy, which can blow sand onto the track.

The fact it’s a night race is pretty interesting. In terms of set-up, practice 1 and 3 are hard as in procedural terms, such as aero tests, and understanding this generation of car at this track.

There are a lot of straights so plenty of overtaking opportunities and it should make for a good race.”

Renault Sport Formula 1 Team will be hoping for a points haul in the desert as the weekend is forecast to be a pleasant, dry affair. Not many of the races on the calendar can promise such a stable climate and it is important to take advantage of the situation.

In many ways yes, especially with the weather!” he added. “I’ll be very surprised if we have to fit the Wet or Intermediate tyres this weekend.

“With dry conditions there’s less chance of difficult circumstances like we saw in Shanghai so everything should be in our favour for a more straightforward race weekend and that’s what we need to get some points down.”