Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director – Technical programme notes
– We evaluated a new front wing on both cars.
– Kimi ran with a new exhaust and outlet package in both sessions.
– Pirelli’s hard (orange) compound tyre was used in the first session, the hard and medium (white) dry tyres as well as the intermediate (green) in the afternoon.
– The second session saw rain-interrupted long runs on both tyre compounds.
What we learned today:
– The E21 ran reliably, giving strong performance on all tyres and in all weather conditions.
– The new front wing works well and will be retained for the rest of the weekend.
– The new exhaust package works well and will remain on Kimi’s car for the rest of the weekend.
Kimi Räikkönen, E21-03
Free practice 1: P2, 1:37.003, 15 laps
Free practice 2: P1, 1:36.569, 28 laps
Kimi: “It was a pretty good day. We tried changing a few things on the car and made progress with where we wanted to be at the end of the sessions. We had some running in the wet which you often get around here and the car feels fine. We ran pretty heavy today so I don’t know how we’ll be when everyone is light for qualifying, but I’m happy with where we are and expect we’ll be reasonable tomorrow.”
KIMI KEEPING COOL ON FREE PRACTICE PACE
YOU WERE FULL OF PRAISE FOR THE CAR AFTER MELBOURNE; HOW DOES IT FEEL HERE IN SEPANG?
It’s the same car we had at the last race and we won there so we know it can be fast. We tried changing a few things, made some progress with where we wanted to be at the end of the sessions and it feels just as good as it did in Australia. There was also some running in the wet which you often get around here and the car feels fine in any conditions.
MANAGING THE TYRES WAS ONE OF THE KEY ELEMENTS OF YOUR VICTORY LAST WEEKEND; WILL THIS BE A MORE DAUNTING TASK IN THE MALAYSIAN HEAT?
We didn’t complete a long run this afternoon like we planned because of the rain so it’s hard to say how the tyres will be, but they were ok last time so hopefully it will be the same here.
WE’VE SEEN SHOWERS ALMOST AS INTENSE AS THE HEAT HERE ALREADY; HOW DOES THE CHANGEABLE WEATHER AFFECT YOU IN THE CAR?
I don’t really mind about the weather; we can’t change it and it’s the same for everybody. It’s hot when you walk around the paddock, but you don’t notice it so much in the car with all the air coming into the cockpit. Like I said, the car feels good in all conditions so I’m not worried what happens.
SO OVERALL A GOOD START TO THE WEEKEND?
It was a pretty good day and it’s always nice to be fastest, but of course that doesn’t mean it will be the same for the whole weekend. We ran pretty heavy so I don’t know what will happen when everyone is light for qualifying, but I’m happy with where we are and expect we’ll be reasonable tomorrow. We’ll just have to wait and see what happens.