|Circuit||Circuit of the Americas|
|Distance||308,405/ 191,675 miles|
||Scuderia Ferrari||retired / accident|
Maurizio Arrivabene: “Today we have seen how strong the team has been all weekend, being capable of reacting so well, notwithstanding the postponing of the qualifying session and knowing that we would have to take a penalty anyway. Seb did another fantastic race, taking a podium finish after starting from P13 on the grid. This result helped us secure second place in the Constructors’ championship! We had a very good strategy today, gambling on the Prime tires to go all the way to the end when the Safety Car came out on lap 27; then we had another caution period and we fitted the Options. Before that second Safety Car period, we had hoped for an even better result, but the Safety Car is part of the game. As for Kimi, I appreciated to see him fight to make it back to the track after hitting the barrier: this fully shows our team spirit. Now the championship goes on, and we need to stay focused with humility and determination, trying to consolidate our position in the Drivers’ Championship. Congratulations to Lewis for winning the title.”
Kimi Raikkonen: “The first part of the race was more or less ok: the car felt pretty good all the time, I had the speed and I was able to fight with other cars. After the tires change I made a mistake, I pushed a bit too much, the rear end got loose, so I went off and hit the wall. The front of the car got stuck on the advertising board, I kept turning the wheels for a while, then I managed to get off and go back on the track. I had a slow puncture on my rear left tire, and I also damaged the right front end: we changed the front wing and the car was ok, but the brake duct had failed and the brakes got overheated, so I had to retire. It’s not very nice when you have a race ending like this: we have the right tools but we have to put things together, make no mistakes and achieve a proper result. Congratulations to Lewis and the whole team, he did the best job out of everybody and deserves to be the champion.”
Sebastian Vettel: “We tried to spoil Lewis’ party today! In the end maybe I should have taken more of a risk with Nico, but it was not possible. It is a shame, but let’s not forget where we started this year. Today it was another great race, a great recovery and the car was fantastic. I think you can’t ask for more if you start from P13. A good first lap helped a lot and after that we had the pace, especially changing to the dry tires in mixed conditions. We seemed to fly for a few laps, a couple of seconds quicker than everybody else. Maybe without the last safety car we could have won the race: but if ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ were candy and nuts… It was a difficult race and we managed it very well. I can only say “grazie tante” to everybody on track and in the factory. So on one hand we are happy, but it is not a nice feeling when you are out of the fight. For the next year this gives us a boost, trying to do make progress. Hopefully we will give them a bigger challenge.”
|Pit-stop||1st stop||Lap 19||New Soft|
|2nd stop||Lap 20||New Soft|
|Pit-stop||1st stop||Lap 18||New Soft|
|2nd stop||Lap 27||New Medium|
|3rd stop||Lap 43||New Soft|
Weather: air 19/20 °C, track 20/22 °C. Cloudy
Vettel comes third and Kimi has to retire after an off-track excursion.
Austin, 25 October – At the end of a race which he started from thirteenth place on the grid, Sebastian Vettel made up ten places to finish third, which means he is still in the runner-up position in the Drivers’ classification. After going off the track on lap 20, the damage caused by that incident saw Kimi Raikkonen have to pit and retire a few laps later. Lewis Hamilton won the race, which means he cannot be beaten on points and is the 2015 World Champion.
Engine change penalties see Seb line up on Row 7 with Kimi starting 18th.
Austin, 25 October –The weather continues to affect track action at the United States Grand Prix. Qualifying got underway as planned at 9am local time, with rain still falling. But by the end of Q2, it had intensified to such an extent that officials decided to cancel Q3, which would have seen the top ten drivers only on track.
The grid is thus taken from the times set in Q2, in which Sebastian Vettel was fifth in 1.58.596 and Kimi Raikkonen eighth with a time of 1.59.703. Both drivers have to drop 10 places however, because ICUs on their cars were changed. Sebastian will start from fourteenth place and Kimi from eighteenth. Pole went to Nico Rosberg (1’56”824) in the Mercedes, with team-mate Lewis Hamilton second in1’56”929.
Sebastian Vettel: “Conditions were difficult for everyone, there was not much to do. It was quite difficult out there, so I think it was the right call not to start Q3. Now we have to take the penalty. Hopefully we have the right conditions to race and, for the rest, we will see.”
Kimi Raikkonen: “The weather conditions today were very similar to yesterday morning, but then they got worse and in some places it was a bit more difficult. It’s a shame we couldn’t run the Q3. It looks like the weather it’s clearing up, hopefully we can run a normal race. We have a pretty good speed also in the rain and the car is handling well, but obviously when you start from the back of the grid the visibility is the biggest issue. Let’s see how it turns out, we’ll try our best.”
Kimi Raikkonen: “It’s a shame that these two days went like this. This morning at least we could do more timed laps than yesterday, but we all are here to drive and the spectators have been sitting in the rain for five hours without seeing any of the cars. It’s an unfortunate thing but we cannot change the weather, there’s nothing that we can do. Tomorrow we’ll have qualifying and race in the same day, but I don’t think it will be so difficult. We have done it before, it will just be a bit more busy day. The main thing is that hopefully the weather will be better and we get both things done, the qualifying session and the Grand Prix. Then it would be nice for everybody.”
Sebastian Vettel: “Obviously it is a shame for the people here. They have been waiting a long time in the wet, they came to see nothing in the end. Hopefully we can put in a good show for them tomorrow. The difficulty will be to manage the whole day, there will be a lot of things to do, a lot of meetings and so on, but Qualifying and race are possible to manage within one day, as we have seen a few years ago in Japan. There was very little we could do on a day like today. But we still had the chance to run a bit this morning, so for tomorrow we have a good chance to qualify well and minimize the damage of going back 10 places. It looks like tomorrow it could be wet in the morning, but then dry in the afternoon during the race.”
RAIKKONEN – chassis 311 – Third Session P7 2:00.785 9 laps
VETTEL – chassis 313 – P2 2:00.380 9 laps
Weather: air 20 °C, track 21 °C. Rain
Session postponed because of bad weather
Austin, 24 October – Race officials decided to postpone today’s qualifying session at the Circuit of the Americas, without any drivers leaving the garages. Dreadful conditions, with constant driving rain and strong winds meant the track was flooded. The session was repeatedly delayed until it was finally postponed at 16h00. It is now scheduled for 9am tomorrow. On the assumption the session will take place, it will no longer be necessary therefore to rely on the times set in P3 to decide the grid order.
Kimi Raikkonen: “We cannot take very much from today’s free practice. This morning, we only did three timed laps because we wanted to save intermediate tires for the second session. We don’t have many sets of tires for the rain conditions and if we still expect more rain it’s better to keep them. It’s a difficult situation but it’s the same for everybody. At the moment we are just guessing, tomorrow we’ll see how it is and then what comes after that if we can’t drive. With this weather conditions there’s more gamble and more chances for odd races, it can go all for you or against you. It’s a shame for everybody, the spectators can’t see anything and we can’t drive because of the conditions. Hopefully we get the proper conditions at least on Sunday and we can do qualifying and race. We’ll try to make the right decisions. I’m sure we have the speed to recover at the start.”
Sebastian Vettel: “I have witnessed something like this already – yes. We had a year in Canada where the race was held for a long time due to rain; and we had a year in Japan, where we had to cancel Qualifying on Saturday and do it on Sunday. It is a shame, especially for the people who came to see us this weekend here at the circuit. But there is not much we can do. We have to remain calm and get prepared for tomorrow as a normal day. Today we obviously didn’t learn a lot, then we see from the conditions what the day brings. Everybody is in the same situation.”
Second free practice cancelled because of bad weather
Austin, 23 October –After some light rain this morning as the United States Grand Prix got underway with free practice 1, the afternoon session never took place at all. With the heavy rain, the marshals unable to work because of the proximity of lightning and then the medical helicopter grounded by the conditions, the race director cancelled the session. If the weather improves in the coming hours, then all the teams will try again tomorrow morning.
Intermediate tyres the order of the day in Texas
Austin, 23 October – As expected, rain was a factor this morning at the Circuit of the Americas where the sixteenth round of the Formula 1 World Championship got underway. Quickest in first free practice on a track that had some standing water in parts, was Nico Rosberg who did a 1.53.989 in the Mercedes, ahead of the Red Bull duo of Daniil Kvyat (1.55.224) and Daniel Ricciardo (1.55.592). Sebastian Vettel was sixth in the Ferrari in 1.55.710. After an installation lap on Wet tyres, he switched to Intermediates for the rest of the session. It was the same programme for Kimi Raikkonen, who was eighth in 1.56.326, although he needed a short extra stop because of a sensor problem. The Ferrari men did just 10 laps, waiting for better conditions as puddles in places meant it was not possible to get a clean lap.
Seb explains the reasons behind engine change
“For this weekend, we are going to use our fifth internal combustion engine of the season. And this means we are going to pay a ten-slot penalty on the grid. But then this has always been the plan and has never been a big secret to us. Our policy is to always try to have the strongest engine at every event along the season. The guys in the engine department have done a great job this year and even the decision we’re taking for the weekend here in Austin should be looked at on the positive side, because we keep pushing hard for performance and so far this has worked very well. Paying the penalty may not be fantastic news if you look at this weekend in isolation of course, but if you look at the whole picture, the advantage of a fresh power unit becomes clear. In general, if I look back at the season, I think it has been a phenomenal one. The challenge we faced was huge, with so many new people in many different roles, and myself being new to the team. The big effort was putting everything together and so far the year has been a great one”.
Kimi hoping for fair weather to have a run
“This is quite a fun track, the weather has been promised to be pretty bad, but hopefully it will turn out ok so that we can get some running already tomorrow. Then we’ll see how the weekend will go. Regarding the use of a fifth engine, it’s part of our program. Since last winter, before the start of the season, we have had a plan that involves the turnover of five engines: we have been following this plan and we have been making progress. For sure we are going to fit it and this will imply a penalty, which is not an ideal situation, but without all these plans we would have not been progressing so well this year. We keep doing our things and moving forward to get where we want to be eventually next season. This year we’ll be looking at finishing the season in the best way we can; and then we’ll put all the effort into the next season”.
Gutierrez: “the most interesting bits from various circuits”
Maranello, 21 October – “I have a special relationship with Austin, because up until this year it was considered the home race for many Mexicans, who always came to watch in large numbers.” That’s Scuderia Ferrari’s third driver Esteban Gutierrez’s initial thought on the first of the two North American races. “The track is very interesting, because it’s been designed bringing together the best corners from various other tracks,” the Mexican told ferrari.com. “A very steep hill leads up to the first corner, which is followed by a sequence of corners that are reminiscent of Becketts at Silverstone, but a bit longer. Then, for example, the long sequence of turns, 16, 17 and 18 are like the long corner at the Istanbul circuit in Turkey. However, my favourite part is the first sector, because it also has some very slow corners and that makes finding the best set-up for the car more complicated. The heaviest braking point is the one at Turn 12 and the aerodynamic downforce level is medium to high. That’s actually quite a common scenario at various races in the championship and we will try to manage the situation as well as possible, as always”.
The challenges of Austin
Maranello, 20 October – Scuderia Ferrari is getting ready to tackle back-to-back races in North America, with Texas the first port of call. Lorenzo Sassi, Chief Designer Power Unit, explains the most important aspects of the next race to ferrari.com. “The Austin track has three interesting facets: the first is what’s known as the power effect, or the importance the output from the power unit has on lap time, which is very high at this track. The second is energy management, because the long straights mean we have to ensure good energy recovery in order to maintain performance on those straights. Last, but by no means least, is the fact the track features many sections that rise and fall, which makes managing oil pressure critical. We expect fuel consumption to be less critical than in Sochi, but it’s still a parameter we will be monitoring carefully, because only when we take to the track on Friday and Saturday will we get a true picture of the situation. As for our development tokens, we still have four left and plenty of ideas on how to spend them, both on increasing power for this season and also looking ahead to 2016.”