Engine issues compromise the Spaniard’s on-track performance
Sepang, September 29th 2017.- Carlos Sainz finished sixteenth in the second Free Practice session for the Malaysia Grand Prix. Carlos’ work was compromised by an old power-unit that didn’t perform as expected. The Spaniard set a fastest lap-time of 1:34.104, 2.843 seconds short from the leader.
For Carlos, this practice was more important than usual since it was his only chance to drive today. He had only 90 minutes of track-time to get up to speed and prepare the weekend, because the team decided, for the second Grand Prix in a row, that Sean Gelael should drive in Free Practice 1.
While Free Practice 1 was affected by the rain, Free Practice 2 wemt underway in dry conditions. The air temperature was stable at 29ºC and the track was at 39ºC.
Carlos hit the track as soon as the lights turned green. He did so on a set of Medium tyres, on which he completed a four-lap stint.
Moments later, he began an eight-lap run on the soft compound. His fastest lap was 1:34.117. Carlos reported stability issues on his STR12.
He finished the session with a five-lap supersoft run, followed by a shorter stint of two laps. On the red Pirelli tyre, the Spaniard improved to 1:34.104. He couldn't improve any further because of an issue with his power-unit, which was at the end of its life.
The red flag was waved with 20 minutes to go, because Romain Grosjean crashed in the third sector. In fact, the Race Director chose to bring the session to a closure since the root cause of the incident was a drain cover. The Spaniard wouldn’t have been able to drive again, anyway.
Carlos expressed his views on the day: "Today it wasn't an easy Friday. The engine issues, together with our absence in Free Practice 1, meant we had a difficult start to the weekend. We have a lot of work ahead, because the balance of the car is not ideal, but I am sure that tomorrow we will improve".
The Malaysia GP will resume tomorrow Saturday with the third Free Practice session, followed by Qualifying. They will be held at 14:00 and 17:00 local time respectively, 08:00 and 11:00 Spanish time. We will keep you updated on Carlos via his official website www.carlosainz.es and our Twitter account @carlosainzinfo.