FRIDAY PRACTICE – 2018 Singapore Grand Prix (Driver Interviews & Report)


FRIDAY PRACTICE – 2018 Singapore Grand Prix (Driver Interviews & Report)

Race Weekend: Formula 1 2018 Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix

Session: Free Practice

It’s one of the most challenging circuits for drivers due to the heat and weather conditions however we’re back for the Singapore Grand Prix and here, you can catch up with what happened during FP1 and FP2 earlier today with driver and team interviews.

MERCEDES – Free Practice Singapore Grand Prix


FP1: 1:41.232 – P6

FP2: 1:38.710 – P2


Lewis Hamilton: “The first session of the day was good, even though it might not show on the timesheets as we didn’t use the hypersoft tyres.”

“We got through our programme, tried some different options and got some good results from it. We were close to the Ferraris, but we will only find out tomorrow how quick they really are.”

“The guys have been working so hard both here at the track and back at the factory to improve the car and it is definitely feeling better than it did in the past.”

“The track is incredible; we’re a lot quicker than we were last year, but that also makes the lap so much harder than it was even last year because the G forces have gone up, we need to react quicker and it is crazy hot in the cockpit. You’re sweating even before you get into the car; in the second session, I think I lost almost two kilos, so I will lose even more on Sunday.”

“We will see how it goes tomorrow, but it’s looking like it might be a three-way fight between Ferrari, Red Bull and us.”


FP1: 1:41.429 – P8

FP2: 1:39.368 – P5


Valtteri Bottas: “It’s been a very hot day and overall a quite positive day. In FP1, we ran in the end on the soft tyres when others were using the hypersofts or ultrasofts and we knew how much we’d improve on the other compounds. So FP1 already looked a bit better than last year.”

“In FP2, both Ferrari and Red Bull looked very quick, but we were not far off. The car has been improved massively in the high-downforce trim. It is much quicker, even compared to the beginning of the season.”

“The fast cars also make it more challenging – the quicker you go, the more G forces you have to pull. It’s especially tough around this track as it is so hot – it’s a bit like doing exercise in a cockpit that’s 60 degrees hot.”

“We made big changes from FP1 to FP2, not all of which were positive, so we’ll work on this overnight. It’s extremely difficult to get the balance perfectly right on this circuit, there’s such a wide range of corners, so we have a lot of work to do.”

“I think we have a lot of possibilities for a good result this weekend, but we need to get the car absolutely right to challenge Ferrari and Red Bull.”

“I didn’t get a really good lap together, but it seemed like the pace was there, so hopefully it’s going to be a really close qualifying tomorrow.”

James Allison – Technical Director

“With the exception of losing an ultrasoft tyre set with Lewis this afternoon through a lock up, we enjoyed a pretty reasonable day.”

“Both cars had too much understeer in the first session, which we were able to dial out during the break, and we got the car pretty happy for a single lap in the second session; likewise, the long-run pace seems to be in the mix.”

“There is still more work to do: we want to cure some nervousness under braking and Valtteri’s balance wasn’t quite right in his long runs. But if we compare the situation to what we experienced last year, then today’s running makes us more confident that we are in the hunt this weekend.”

FERRARI – Free Practice Singapore Grand Prix


FP1: 1:39.997 – P3

FP2: 1:40.633 – P9


Sebastian Vettel: “After hitting the wall we took some precautions and decided to stop running. We lost some time, which is not ideal, but nevertheless I got a good feeling with the car.”

“Luckily, I’ve been here before and I know the track so I can make up for lost time. Tomorrow I’ll be keen on finding the right balance to feel the car a little better than I did this evening. Then, I think it should be fine.”

“On the other hand, Kimi’s data is very important too and it’s good to know he had a smooth session. I lost a bit of time today, but it can happen.”

“In the evening we tried something on our car which didn’t work very well, but the car is good and has potential. I believe we can improve and tomorrow it will be better. Also, I think on Sunday tyres will be an important factor, so we’ll see.”


FP1: 1:40.486 – P4

FP2: 1:38.699 – P1


Kimi Raikkonen: “Today everything felt OK and things ran pretty smoothly. In the first session we checked many things and made some changes; in the second one everything seemed to work.”

“It was a normal Friday, but obviously this track is different to many others and the second session is held in different conditions from the first one. The tyres behaved pretty much as we expected.”

“The hypersoft is the one that provides the best grip for sure, so it is very useful here, at least for the short runs. Obviously they are not going to last as long as the other compounds, but we are aware of that.”

“I tried two different floors; there’s not a night and day difference between them, but we wouldn’t use something if we didn’t think it is better.”

“Now we‘ll keep on doing our job and see what it brings tomorrow. For sure it will be close.”

RED BULL RACING – Free Practice Singapore Grand Prix


FP1: 1:39.711 – P1

FP2: 1:39.309 – P4

Daniel Ricciardo: “It’s going to be close at the top and all three teams can be fast around here. The morning session was better for us and surprisingly we were a bit more comfortable with the hotter track.”

“Once it cooled down this evening, we didn’t feel we were able to optimise everything. I’m not concerned, we have tonight to analyse everything and I believe we will bring it all together tomorrow.”

“I like that they brought a Soft tyre which is a few steps harder than the Ultra and the Hyper which opens up more options for the race.”

“Each tyre seems to be a good step faster than the other, so for Qualifying I think it will push everyone to use the Hypersoft. It was fun out there.”

“It’s the toughest circuit both mentally and physically but I love it and it’s a good challenge. I’m sweating a lot but it’s worth it.”

“I’ve prepared well and the team has brought a very good car here, so let’s hope the gap is close tomorrow.”


FP1: 1:39.912 – P2

FP2: 1:39.221 – P3


Max Verstappen: “It wasn’t the perfect day for me, we still have plenty of room to improve ahead of Qualifying tomorrow. This mornings practice felt good but I wasn’t entirely satisfied with the second session.”

“This afternoon we could have been a bit quicker over the short runs as we suffered a bit from understeer. I don’t think we have the pace to fight for pole so we will just try to optimise the package.”

“Once we have, short runs and race pace should improve. It definitely wasn’t a bad day, some hard work tonight should put us in a good position with ability to attack.”

“The Hypersoft struggled over the long runs, it dropped off quickly. The other compounds were not so bad which could make the race interesting.”

MCLAREN – Free Practice Singapore Grand Prix


FP1: 1:42.630 – P14

FP2: 1:40.459 – P8


Fernando Alonso: “It was a positive Friday. It’s always amazing to be around these streets at these speeds. We tried some interesting stuff, also comparing different configurations on the two cars.”

“We gathered good information about the tyres and about the set-up changes that we were managing in both free practice sessions, and we will go through them tonight.”

“I managed to get quite a good amount of laps under my belt, which on a street circuit is very important as the more running you get, the more confident you are.”

“It’s going to be a close battle to make it into Q3 tomorrow, but qualifying position is very important here so we are giving priority to our Saturdays performance.”

“Track evolution we know is huge in Singapore, so you try to follow the track conditions as well, and I think our preparation for tomorrow’s qualifying is okay.”


FP1: 1:45.160 – P20

FP2: 1:41.164 – P16


Stoffel Vandoorne: “It was definitely not the easiest of Fridays, especially in FP1. We missed a lot of track time with a couple of problems on the car.”

“Around a circuit like Singapore it’s definitely not ideal because the track keeps evolving so much, and you need laps to find your rhythm and build up during the weekend.”

“We started a bit on the back foot, but I think we recovered pretty well in FP2, finding my feet in the first run and having a reasonable run at the end. By the time we ran high fuel I think the pace was pretty competitive. “

“We did a lot of laps in FP2 and I’m looking forward to hopefully having a clean day tomorrow.”

“We learned a lot today, especially about the Hypersoft tyre. We’ve done a lot of tests across both cars so now it’s going to be super important to put all the pieces together tomorrow.”

“This race is massively favoured towards qualifying because the higher you can start, the better it will be for the race. It’s a bit too early to talk about tomorrow. We’re probably a little bit more competitive around this circuit because the power sensitivity is lower, so I think we should hopefully be a little bit higher, but we know that tomorrow the others will improve as well.”

SAUBER – Free Practice Singapore Grand Prix


FP1: 1:42.408 – P11

FP2: 1:40.812 – P12


Marcus Ericsson: “It was a good day. We tested all of the different tyre compounds for the weekend, which is a positive start.”

“It is a tricky circuit, with various types of corners and high temperatures making it a challenge to drive. We learned a lot today, and the car felt good.”

“We are reasonably competitive, and have some work ahead of us to advance in what is still a very tight midfield. I look forward to being in the fight tomorrow.”


FP1: 1:42.035, P9

FP2: 1:41.062 – P14


Charles Leclerc: “It was an interesting day for me. I drove on the Marina Bay Street Circuit for the first time, which was exciting.”

“The track lives up to its reputation and is a good challenge, especially in terms of tyre management. FP1 went well. I made a small error at the end of the session and touched the wall, but thankfully we had already gone through the planned programme and didn’t lose any running time.”

“The team did a great job in fixing up the car in time for FP2. The second session took place at night, which is more representative of the conditions we will have during qualifying and the race.”

“We are competitive and will work hard tomorrow to fight for good start positions. I look forward to being back in the car.”

The Formula 1 Girl 🙂

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