The circuit, the country and the weather might change, but the result of qualifying for Scuderia Ferrari remains the same. In Sepang, we had one driver, Fernando Alonso in ninth and the other, Felipe Massa in twelfth. In Shanghai, the Ferrari men produced an identical result. Also the same as in Malaysia was the management strategy for the Pirelli tyres: one set of Prime, which here is the Hard and one of Option (Soft) in Q1, one used and one new Soft in Q2. Fernando then used the last set of Soft available on his only run in Q3.
Fernando Alonso: “We knew this would be a difficult qualifying and that’s how it turned out. We managed to get into Q3, staying ahead of Vettel by a few thousandths. Then, from Q2 to Q3, the wind changed direction and that was penalising. The car is what it is and the improvements we brought here are not sufficient to produce a jump in performance and so this position corresponds more or less to our current potential. Sure, we cannot be happy to be a second off pole position, but all we can do is work to try and close this gap. If we do enough of a good job then we can think about winning, otherwise not”.
“But I remain optimistic: even in 2010, we were significantly behind the best, but all the same, we got to the final race leading the World Championship…The starting grid is very exciting and curious, with two Mercedes, one Sauber and a Lotus in front of the rest. We cannot permit ourselves to make any mistakes because we certainly don’t have the best car: if we manage to operate perfectly, as we did in Australia and Malaysia, then we can think about bringing home valuable points.”