Adderly Fong made his free practice debut for the Sauber F1 Team, completing twenty-five trouble-free laps with a best time of 1:48.269s during FP1 in Abu Dhabi en-route to finishing nineteenth fastest.
The Chinese driver felt he overdrove early on during the session, which cost him some valuable time, but as he adapted to the Sauber C33 (after testing the 2012 Sauber C31 in Valencia a few weeks ago) he found some time.
“It was a good session,” admitted Fong. “This car is totally different to the C31 I had driven in Valencia. As it was quite hot today the track temperatures were high, so it was very tricky to get the tyres to work.
“I think for my first FP1 I was pushing too much. I was trying to get onto the power as quickly as possible, but that driving style cost me time, especially in most of the slow corners such as in sector three. Then I had a cool down and was actually quicker on that lap on some of the corner exits.
“But I guess this is what FP1 is for, for learning a new car and also the operation procedures of the team. It was a bit overwhelming at the beginning with all the buttons I had to press. But having done the first run, you start to cool down.”
Fong was thankful for the experience in Abu Dhabi, especially being around the drivers he usually only sees on track on television.
“It was very nice to see drivers I normally watch on TV right in front of me,” said Fong. “It is a privilege to be here, and it was a fantastic experience for me.”