HRT were unable to make any more gains into rivals Marussia and Caterham in Korea today. Pedro de la Rosa will start twenty third on the grid, whilst Narain Karthikeyan, who suffered a brake failure and was unable to set a time, will start twenty fourth.
Despite this, the experienced de la Rosa was still happy with how the session went.
“We did a more than acceptable qualifying session; especially the second lap which was pretty good. But we had a lot of understeer and as a result were unable to post a perfect lap. The difference to our rivals isn’t what we expected, but it seems that at this circuit their car is working better than ours.”
“In any case, I’m satisfied with qualifying and more so with our pace with the soft tyres. Tomorrow, as always, we will go out giving it our all but we must continue working to get closer to our rivals.”
Karthikeyan meanwhile was just happy to be in one piece, unlike his brakes. They failed at the end of the long back straight and the Indian driver came within inches of taking out a Force India.
“We were in quite a good position after the third free practice sessions as I’d adapted very well to the circuit and the car was performing great. But once again I was unlucky this season and we had a mechanical issue on the first lap of qualifying. Now we must analyse the problem to fix it and avoid it from springing up again. Tomorrow we will try to recover those positive vibes,” he said afterwards.
“Today wasn’t one of our best days. In the morning’s practice sessions we witnessed an improvement in the performance of the cars and the drivers finished with better sensations than yesterday. But in qualifying things didn’t go so well. Narain, on his first lap, suffered a broken brake disc and was unable to go out. Luckily both him and the car are well and now were investigating why this happened. And Pedro completed a good lap but our rivals were much better,” Luis Perez-Sala, the team’s principal added.
“Tomorrow will be a long race and the tyres and pit stops will play a key role so we will try to do the best job possible to make the most of an opportunity that may arise.”