Formula 1

HRT Hail A “Step Forward” At Suzuka

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HRT failed to see both cars to the end of the race for the second time in two races. Pedro de la Rosa was able to finish eighteenth, yet team mate Narain Karthikeyan was forced to retire with a undisclosed mechanical problem.

“Today’s race was quite good and we could say we’ve taken a step forward, although we still have plenty to do. The first stint was good but we had a problem in the first pitstop which made me lose quite a lot of time. My times with the hard tyres towards the end were very good and we were right in there. The car was handling well and we got close to Pic and Petrov, which for us, at a track like this, is fantastic,” de la Rosa said.

“I had a good start and passed Pic on the first lap. The car was working well, it had good pace, and after the first pitstop I was ahead of Pedro and completing a good race. However, we suffered a problem with the car later and, coming in for a second tyre change, the team decided that, as a precautionary measure, it was best to stop. Now it’s time to think about Korea and work to take another step forward,” Karthikeyan added.

“As it tends to be the case in races like this, I’m happy on one hand because we were competitive; we finished one lap off the winner which indicates that our pace was good. But on the other hand it was a shame that Narain had to retire. He made a good start and was running well but the car suffered a small issue with the bottom part and, for safety reasons, we had to stop him. Now we will see how big the problem is. But overall, it was a positive weekend because we progressed, conserved our tyres better and improved our times. We hope for this progress to continue,” team boss Luis Perez-Sala concluded.

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