Alfa Romeo F1 Team ORLEN battled a slippery Marina Bay track as it qualified for tomorrow's Singapore Grand Prix. Zhou Guanyu claimed a spot in Q2, eventually qualifying in 15th position, one spot ahead of team-mate, Valtteri Bottas, in a session that started damp with a gradually drying track.
Frédéric Vasseur, Team Principal: "This result is not what we were expecting based on the good performance we showed on Friday but, in the end, we were not able to extract the same pace in today's conditions. The wet track didn't really suit us, and there was also some bad luck for us: Valtteri seemed to have the pace to make it through Q1, but his tyres lost performance just as the track got to its best. Zhou delivered a really good Q1 effort, but eventually 15th was probably as good as we could have hoped tonight. Making up ground won't be the easiest: this is not a track on which you can overtake easily, so we’ll need to work even harder. We know our dry pace was not bad, so we can still hope to attack tomorrow; should it be wet, then anything can happen and we’ll need to make every opportunity count."
Valtteri Bottas (car number 77):
Alfa Romeo F1 Team ORLEN C42 (Chassis 01/Ferrari)
FP3: 18th / 2:02.066 (11 laps)
Q1: 16th / 1:56.083 (7 laps)
"We looked good in the dry, so to go out in Q1 is disappointing. Conditions were quite tricky, the track was constantly changing with patches of dry and wet, but in the end we were quite unlucky with the timing: I was among the first to take the flag and, on the last lap, my tyres started to go. We had planned to do the whole of Q1 on one set of inters and it was hard to tell whether we should stop: when we realised what was happening, it was too late to pit, so we couldn't improve when the track was at its best. Starting 16th is going to be a challenge, especially as this is the second hardest track on which to overtake: but you never know – this is Singapore, everything can happen and I believe in miracles!"
Zhou Guanyu (car number 24):
Alfa Romeo F1 Team ORLEN C42 (Chassis 03/Ferrari)
FP3: 19th / 2:02.599 (11 laps)
Q1: 1:55.375 (7 laps)
Q2: 15th / 1:55.518 (7 laps)
"Overall, I can be quite happy with how things have gone so far during the weekend, considering it is my first time in Singapore; even though I feel like we could've done a bit more in qualifying, I have enjoyed driving here so far. I was quite happy with Q1, while, on the contrary, Q2 has been a little frustrating from my side. On my first flying lap I had to slow down because of a yellow flag, and I set my lap time on the second push lap. Then we decided to take a gamble and switch to the slicks to try to get into Q3, but unfortunately there was no grip, and I couldn't improve anymore. I think with the inters we could have had a chance to get into the top ten today. Let's see how the weather will be tomorrow, we seem to have a good car in dry conditions and, besides that, everything can happen here. We kept the momentum from Monza to Singapore even though the tracks have a completely different layout, and I’m happy for that."