Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team 2018

01.07.2018 GRID PENALTY SETBACK FOR ALFA ROMEO SAUBER'S LECLERC

ALFA ROMEO SAUBER F1 TEAM - 2018 AUSTRIAN GRAND PRIX QUALIFYING, RED BULL RING

It turned out to be disappointing qualifying session for the Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team ahead of today's Austrian Grand Prix as, despite going through to Q2 once again, Charles Leclerc was hit with a five place grid penalty after requiring a gearbox change while Marcus Ericsson (above) will start from P20 on the grid.

It turned out to be disappointing qualifying session yesterday for the Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team ahead of today's Austrian Grand Prix as, despite going through to Q2 once again, Charles Leclerc was hit with a five place grid penalty after requiring a gearbox change.

The team came into qualifying off the back of a productive Friday as during the two free practice sessions Lecelerc and his team mate Marcus Ericsson completed an extensive programme in preparation for the upcoming qualifying and race in Spielberg, running on all three tyre compounds (soft, supersoft, ultrasoft).

Unfortunately, at the end of the FP3 on Saturday morning an issue with the transmission on Leclerc’s Ferrari-powered Sauber C37 single-seater resulted in changing the gearbox and as a knock on being handed a five-position grid penalty for today’s race.

The team did a good job to fix his car in time for qualifying and the young Monegasque rookie bounced back very strongly, finishing the session in P13 having moved through to Q3 and into the Q2 session once again.

Leclerc will thus take the start of the Austrian GP today from eighteenth position on the grid, followed by team mate Marcus Ericsson who, after a solid performance in FP3 with the sixteenth fastest time, only managed to qualify last on the grid in P20.

TheSwiss team however remains confident of optimising its performance for today’s race.

Marcus Ericsson

C37 (Chassis 01/Ferrari)
1st practice: 11th / 1:06.400 min (32 laps) / 2nd practice: 14th / 1:06.199 min (29 laps) / 3rd practice: 16th / 1:05.699 min / ultrasoft tyres (27 laps)
/ Qualifying: 20th in Q1 (1:05.479 min / ultrasoft tyres)

“It was a disappointing qualifying for me. We have had a good weekend so far, so we need to work to understand why we struggled so much during qualifying. The car felt good, so we are going to take a close look at the data to get the maximum potential for the race.”

Charles Leclerc

C37 (Chassis 04/Ferrari)
1st practice: 9th / 1:06.215 min (31 laps) / 2nd practice: 12th / 1:06.096 min (30 laps) / 3rd practice: 10th / 1:05.219 min / ultrasoft tyres (25 laps)
/ Qualifying: 13th in Q2 (1:04.967 min / ultrasoft tyres)

“I am very happy about today – P13. There was not much more for us to extract, and now we must push to understand why we made a small step backwards after FP3. A huge thank you to the whole team for putting my car back out on track for qualifying. Due to a grid penalty, I will be starting the race from P18 tomorrow. It will be difficult to advance, but I will push as much as I can in the first few laps and do my best to work my way forward in the race.”

Photos: Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team - 2018 FIA F1 World Championship

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Photos: Sauber F1 Team / 2018 Interfuture Media/Italiaspeed