Luca Ghiotto was downbeat after Qualifying only ninth for the FIA Formula 2 championship Feature race at Silverstone, and he revealed that his Campos Vexatec Racing team are trying to solve the riddle to why the car was down on speed.
The championship has been blighted with issues relating to the engine and to the clutch since introducing its new Mecachrome-powered Dallara F2 2018 at the start of the season, and although he admits it may not be related to one or either of those, Ghiotto says there are struggles that they are, so far, unable to overcome.
“P9 in Qualifying and to be honest we’re struggling a little bit on speed,” said Ghiotto to The Checkered Flag. “The problem is we don’t know the reason why, there is a bit of things going on with engines, clutches and everything, but I think everyone knows about it.
“Whether it is part of the issue, it could be but yesterday we worked quite hard on the race pace in Free Practice. Of course with that we didn’t spend so much time on the performance runs, so we are looking more forward to the race than we did in qualifying.”
Starting from the fifth row, Ghiotto hopes to move forward in Saturday’s Feature race, particularly due to that work the team put in during free practice, and he is confident of putting his car into the top eight, providing he is able to avoid burning through his tyres too early on.
“It’s always tough, we have a rolling start so that is already once less chance to win places at the beginning,” said the Italian. “I think that the only way to really get to the front is to have a good car that is not burning to much its tyres.
“I’m quite confident to be honest, we did a good job in free practice but until you go in the race, only then can you see if the work is paying out or not.”
Ghiotto feels managing tyres will be one of the key parts to the race at Silverstone, particularly due to the new surface for 2018 and the hotter than normal temperatures being felt this weekend.
“Because it’s a bit more hot, and the new tarmac is very black, which of course attracts more temperatures, it’s tough,” said Ghiotto. “Because when you try the race runs in practice you are always alone but, in the race,, you are fighting with other cars, which means more problem with the aero, more stress on the tyres.
“I think it’s going to be one of the key things today to manage tyre wear.”