Trying to stop rain falling on Friday at a Grand Prix while the F1 circus crosses Europe from West to East would seem to be as futile as King Canute’s attempt to stop the waves reaching the beach. It rained on Friday in Silverstone, then last week it did the same in Hockenheim and contrary to all forecasts, it also rained at the Hungaroring. The rain today definitely caused less of a nuisance than at the two previous days of free practice, but it was still enough for none of the 24 drivers entered in the race to evaluate both types of dry tyre over a long run, because the rain began to fall at around the halfway point of the second session.
“What’s to say, the usual Friday, at the end of which it is always difficult to hypothesise on how things will go in qualifying or the race. Even more so when it rains, as happened over the past three race weekends. Because of this afternoon’s rain in fact, we did not manage to try the dry tyres over a long run but, at least in the morning we managed to complete the work relating to the aerodynamic updates which we brought here in Hungary. Now it’s up to our engineers to do all the analyses to put together the best possible package for the rest of the weekend. Here, qualifying is definitely more important than elsewhere: it will therefore be vital to go into every little detail to be as well prepared as possible for tomorrow. The unknown relating to tyres? It’s the same for everyone as was the case in Silverstone and Hockenheim!”
“All in all, it was a good day, with the only inconvenient factor being the rain, which arrived halfway through the afternoon, which prevented us doing the planned long run to understand the tyre behaviour, However, it was not just our problem, as everyone found themselves in the same situation. All the same, we did manage to get a reasonably clear idea on tyre performance and on that of the car, but it’s really too early to judge where we are compared to the others. There are definitely some cars that are going quickly, as indeed was the case in Hockenheim. But we are well aware that the results of the first day at the Hungaroring always need to be taken with a pinch of salt because at the start of the weekend, the track is always very dirty and the situation changes radically from Friday through to Sunday. Let’s see how things go tomorrow. We realise we need to do everything as well as possible to get the very most out of what we have to work with.”
Pat Fry, Technical Director
“We did a hundred laps between our two drivers, but much less than half of them were really significant in terms of evaluating the performance of the F2012 on this track. As usual on Friday, we had a lot of work to get through, especially as far as the car’s aerodynamics are concerned. Luckily, the rain, which seems to be always with us in this long summer part of the season, arrived when this part of our work had been completed: we picked up a raft of data which we now need to analyse, both on the track and back in Maranello, to decide not only the configuration of the car for the rest of the weekend, but also to continue our development work for the second part of the season. We had no reliability problems, which is always positive. From the little one can see of the others, it only goes to show what we said before the weekend: there are some cars that are faster than us and if we want to have even the slightest chance of beating them, we must do everything perfectly. It won’t be easy, but we will give it our best shot as usual.”