Sergio Pérez was left to rue technical problems which blighted his sole practice session in preparation for the Austrian Grand Prix, having already lost his morning running to Alfonso Celis Jr. taking over the lead Force India in the morning’s first practice run.
Pérez was only able to complete a partial programme of running in FP2, his car hitting technical troubles in FP1 whilst being piloted by Celis that spilled over into the afternoon.
With little time to adjust his setup, the Mexican was left unhappy with the feeling of his car, setting only the 17th quickest time in the afternoon practice session.
“It’s been a difficult day trying to get up to speed this afternoon,” he said. “I’ve struggled with the balance of the car – mainly the corner entry stability and with the rear – so we’ve been trying to solve those issues.”
With so little pace demonstrated in the first day of running, Perez was left worried he could end up outside the Top 10 on Sunday’s grid after qualifying without significant changes beforehand.
“We need to understand where we can improve tonight and pick up some speed tomorrow to make sure was can be in the fight for Q3.”
Deputy team principal Bob Fernley explained how Perez’s delayed start to the session was down to “issues with the energy store, which forced us to make some significant hardware changes.”
“It cut short Alfonso’s opportunity in the car and delayed Sergio’s afternoon programme,” he continued. “It’s put Sergio on the backfoot and we have some work to do tonight to get the car more to his liking.”