2018 FORMULA 1 HEINEKEN CHINESE GRAND PRIX
CHINESE GRAND PRIX REPORT
We reflect on a difficult Chinese Grand Prix
Race: Pos. 18th
"It was a difficult weekend for us overall because we never found the pace since Saturday morning. We knew the race would be difficult after the performance we had in qualifying and the car was quite tricky. Today things didn't really work out for us, so we have plenty to analyse between the two weekends and try to understand why we were fast in Bahrain and why we struggled in Shanghai. I apologise to Brendon for the contact we had, the team told me that they were going to switch our positions so I went on the inside of the back straight thinking he would give me space. Unfortunately, I don't think he saw me and once I was on the inside there was nothing I could do. We lost a lot of time after that, I broke my front wing and the steering bent at the end of the race, so it was really difficult to drive and we couldn't do much from there. We have some work to do to get ready for Baku, it's a track I know and like so I'm looking forward to getting there."
"It was a tough day for us, at the beginning of the race I had no grip on the Ultrasofts so that compromised our strategy. Starting near the back of the grid we tried alternating strategies to give us a better chance but unfortunately that didn't work. I think the accident with Pierre was down to a miscommunication. The team asked us to swap positions because we were on completely different strategies, so I was going to let him by on the exit of Turn 14 like I did at the start of the race. The second time we had to change positions I planned to do the same but I got hit from behind at the apex. Then towards the end of the race I had to retire because the team saw an issue with the gearbox. In the end it was a long afternoon."
Franz Tost (Toro Rosso Team Principal):
"First of all, congratulations to Red Bull Racing for this fantastic victory. It was a fantastic decision from the strategy side and Daniel Ricciardo took the chance. He had everything under control to win the race. Unfortunately, Toro Rosso didn't perform well. This weekend we struggled from the very beginning onwards - we were near the back on the starting grid, and during the race we couldn't find the pace we needed. In addition to this, we had the collision between the two drivers because of a communication misunderstanding, which is a real shame. At the end of the race, we detected an issue on the gearbox of Brendon's car and therefore we had to retire. Hopefully we can find the reason for this bad performance and be more competitive in Baku."
Toyoharu Tanabe (Honda F1 Technical Director):
"After a strong showing in Bahrain just a few days ago, we have had a much more difficult weekend in Shanghai and today's poor result reflects that. On the PU front, everything ran smoothly, but our overall pace was not very good and then it was unfortunate that our two cars collided. Now, after three races in just four weeks, we can assess what we have learned in order to improve for the future."