Pastor Maldonado expects to be firmly in contention at the front of the field tomorrow if qualifying for the German Grand Prix is held in the wet. The Venezuelan was fastest of all in the second free practice session on intermediate tyres and says the FW34 is working well in slippery conditions.
“It was a challenging practice session for everyone because the track conditions were changing a lot and I was trying to adapt my driving style and the car to best suit those conditions. We have a good balance in the car in wet conditions, even with a damp track, and the time I set in the second session shows that if it rains tomorrow we will be competitive.”
Williams teammate Bruno Senna could only manage sixteenth this afternoon after failing to deliver the perfect lap when the track was at his driest but the Brazilian was also encouraged by his car's performance.
“It was a bit of a frustrating day because the weather was so changeable. We started on extreme wets but the track dried out very quickly and we then went on to intermediates where our pace was competitive which is promising. Unfortunately we missed the window to get some good laps in on the drying track but overall the car is feeling good and with a bit more set-up work we can have a good weekend.”
Valtteri Bottas drove Senna's car in FP1 but finished the session by spinning it into the wall at the Sachs Kurve. The team's reserve driver accepted the blame for the crash and was thankful that it didn't compromise Senna in the afternoon.
“Unfortunately the rain affected what we were testing and we had to adapt to the weather, but we still managed to do quite a few laps and completed most of what we were aiming for. The session ended disappointingly for me when I lost the back end of the car coming into the stadium section, locking the rear when I hit the brakes but I want to thank the team as they did a great job to put the car back together for Bruno's afternoon session.”