Kimi goes second quickest in both Malaysian GP practice sessions

FP1The Ferraris finished the first free practice session of the Malaysian Grand Prix in second and third places. Nico Rosberg in the Mercedes was fastest in this first bit of action for the second race weekend of the season, with a time of 1.40.124. The two Ferrari men split an aerodynamic evaluation programme, running two sets of the Hard tyre on the demanding Malaysian track. Kimi Raikkonen completed 17 laps, to finish behind Rosberg with a 1.40.497, while team-mate Sebastian Vettel managed just 13, (1.40.985) after having to spend much of the session in the garage while the cooling system was checked.

FP2Once again, Kimi Raikkonen posted the second fastest time at the Sepang circuit, in the second free practice session for the Malaysian Grand Prix. And also just like in the morning, it was a Mercedes that was fastest, this time that of Lewis Hamilton (1.39.790.) Kimi did a 1.40.163, while in the other SF15-T, Sebastian Vettel was seventh with a 1.40.652. Both Ferrari men worked on a programme that focused on a comparison of the Hard and Medium tyres and some set-up work.Track action in this the second round of the season resumes tomorrow at 14h00 with the third free practice sessionBradley Lord


“Sepang is generally a circuit the drivers like a lot, even though it is very demanding, especially in terms of the high temperatures,” says Esteban Gutiérrez, Scuderia Ferrari’s third driver, in conversation on the topic of the Malaysian circuit with “Cooling some of the car’s mechanical components is a very important aspect, because while one is always trying to run things right on the limit, on the other one must not forget this race takes place in very hot and humid conditions. For example, on the aerodynamic front, clearly the smaller the air intakes are, the better the resulting airflow, which therefore favours the aerodynamic side but at the same time, it must allow for sufficient cooling of the power unit. In reality, in Malaysia, you have to try and refrigerate everything in the cockpit area including the driver! Therefore, to be in the best physical shape, it’s important to arrive as early as possible and start training in the high humidity levels. We know that in Sepang, there are can often be some sudden and very heavy downpours and this is another aspect of the weather that can impact on strategy, both in qualifying and in the race. In general, it’s a track that requires a set-up that’s a compromise between the optimum level of understeer to tackle the many wide corners and good top speed for the two long straights. If one favours one aspect more than the other, there’s a risk of having an abnormally high tyre wear rate, given the high temperatures involved. There are two heavy braking points,” says the Mexican in conclusion, “but Sepang is not too demanding on brakes, nor in terms of fuel consumption.”