Romain Grosjean felt he could do no more during qualifying for the Belgian Grand Prix on Saturday as the Frenchman secured twelfth place on the grid for the Haas F1 Team.
Grosjean just about scraped into the second phase of qualifying at Spa-Francorchamps, finishing just under a tenth of a second faster than Williams Martini Racing’s Felipe Massa, but his run in the second phase of qualifying pleased him, with an improvement of more than half a second saw him up to twelfth.
Turning his attention to race day, Grosjean admits at low-downforce venues this season they have struggled for pace, and he is expecting another tough outing this weekend, although he did feel good with the VF17 with high fuel levels during Friday practice.
“Yesterday we tried a few downforce levels and, clearly, we had one that was far too light and it made the car tricky to drive,” said Grosjean. “Today I’m very happy with myself and the team.
“It was a hell of a lap in qualifying. I could’ve done better with the tow, but I wasn’t quite close enough to the car in front of me to get the advantage on the straight line. The rest of the lap was pretty amazing. It’s the best we could do, to be fair.
“The car felt OK setup-wise. I pushed really hard, but on the low-drag circuits we’ve been struggling a little bit. It’s going to be a long race tomorrow with a lot happening.
“Nobody has real information about tyre degradation and from the few laps I did yesterday on high fuel, the car felt OK. I’m looking forward to it.”