Alfa Romeo Racing hoping to show improvements for qualifying in Barcelona

by Becca Stubbs

Alfa Romeo Racing had a mixed day at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya as Kimi Räikkönen was left frustrated but Antonio Giovinazzi seemed pleased with his practice sessions.

Finnish driver Kimi was left languishing in eighteenth during Free Practice 1 with a 1:20:591 but vastly improved in Free Practice 2 as he jumped to eleventh with a 1:18:727.

After being disappointed by his day, Kimi felt the team had a lot of work to do overnight to give themselves a fighting chance in qualifying.

And, as a man of many words Kimi summed his day up by simply saying: “That was a difficult day for us, with lots of issues here and there.

“At the end of FP2 we understood the car a bit better, but we still have a lot of work to do for tomorrow’s qualifying.”

On the other side of the Alfa Romeo garage was rookie racer Giovinazzi who seemed to have a better day in the Spanish sunshine than Räikkönen.

In Free Practice 1 Giovinazzi finished fourteenth with a 1:20:021 and, despite going faster in Free Practice 2, he dropped three places to seventeenth.

After putting in 65 laps over both practice sessions, the Alfa Romeo team have plenty of data to work with and Giovinazzi was pleased with his efforts.

He seemed happy with his day on track and said: “It was very nice to finally have a Friday without issues and I hope it is a sign of things to come for the rest of the weekend.

“I was able to get some good mileage under my belt in both sessions, which was crucial.

“As always, understanding the tyres was a big part of our programme today and I feel we have a good understanding of how they work.”

Having already gained valuable experience around the Spanish GP circuit, Giovinazzi is looking to see how far the team have come since pre-season testing in February.

However, the focus is always on the results and Giovinazzi is looking to squeeze into qualifying session three for the second time in a row.

Giovinazzi qualified in eighth place in Baku and he’s hoping for a similar result this weekend.

The young Italian added: “Barcelona is a track we know very well but it’s interesting to see how much the cars have progressed since testing and in these temperatures.

“Hopefully we can progress a bit more tonight and we will be in the battle for Q3 tomorrow.”

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