Ricciardo puzzled over lack of Option pace
13 April 2012 – Daniel Ricciardo admits that he expected more speed when using Pirelli’s Option tyre in Shanghai on Friday. For the Chinese Grand Prix weekend, the softer of the two Slicks on offer is the yellow-marked Soft. White-marked Mediums are the Prime.
“FP1 was partly wasted because of the weather, the damp track meaning we only got a handful of clean laps,” reported the Australian, whose day ended in 12th position. “But the afternoon was better and I was happy with the balance of the car on the Prime, although I did not feel we gained that much in performance terms when switching to the Option; so this is one area we have to look into this evening - maybe the track conditions didn’t suit the Option so well.”
Team-mate Jean-Éric Vergne, who scored for the first time in Malaysia three weeks ago, ended his day two positions and three tenths of a second behind Ricciardo.
“Another new circuit for me,” said the Frenchman. “I enjoyed it and I think I learned it quite quickly, although the few drops of rain this morning limited the number of laps I could do. We managed to do a lot more this afternoon, which was positive.
“Daniel and I ran different setups and I think splitting the programme between the two cars worked well, in that the engineers now have plenty of data to study tonight. I am not entirely happy with the feeling I had from the car, but I am quite confident that we can have a good car tomorrow and do well.”
Toro Rosso is currently eighth in the Constructors’ Championship with six points.