Both Kimi Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean were unhappy with the tyre temperatures during the two practice sessions ahead of this weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix, where the low track temperatures resulted in difficulty warming up the Pirelli tyres. However, the forecast is for much warmer conditions for the race on Sunday.
With rain plaguing the opening practice session of the Canadian Grand Prix, many drivers struggled greatly in getting heat into their Pirelli tyres. This included the Lotus duo of Kimi Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean, with the former eventually describing the car as “not ideal but certainly not a disaster”. Throughout the day the Enstone duo struggled mainly with Pirelli’s P Zero medium tyre compound, however heat was also an issue with the super-soft compound. During the latter half of the second practice session, Kimi Raikkonen was struck with a brake issue which prematurely ended his session.
“We improved the car through the day and by the end of the session it was ok; not ideal but certainly not a disaster either.” Explained the 2007 World Champion, “It wasn’t easy to get the tyres up to temperature today, but it’s pretty cold at the circuit so that’s not too much of a surprise. If we can get the tyres working better it will be an improvement for sure, but it’s not going to change the world. We’ll be looking at how to get them a bit warmer for qualifying tomorrow and then see what the weather does. After that, we’ll do the best we can.”
Due to his race-ending incident with Daniel Ricciardo last time out at the Monaco Grand Prix, Romain Grosjean will incur a ten-place grid penalty after tomorrow’s qualifying session. Last year the Frenchman finished a career-best 2nd behind eventual race winner Lewis Hamilton, a result the former GP2 Champion will be striving to match despite his hefty penalty. Although the outfit were plagued with a lack of tyre temperature, Romain Grosjean described his Friday as a normal day for both himself and the team.
“It was more or less a normal Friday for us.” Said Romain Grosjean, who finished 3rd in both sessions. “This morning was obviously a wet session so we worked on setup for those conditions, then in the afternoon we tested the prototype tyres and completed some long runs. It’s quite hard to get the tyres switched on in these conditions as the surface here is very smooth, so with low temperatures it’s a bit more tricky to build up the energy in the rubber; more so with the mediums but even with the super softs.”
Although Lotus only scored one point last time out around the streets of Monte-Carlo, they remain 3rd in the Constructors’ Championship only 11 points behind Ferrari. Both Romain Grosjean and Kimi Raikkonen know how to excel around Montreal’s Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, and will be understandably striving for a competitive result this weekend to close the gap to the Scuderia and Championship leaders Red Bull.
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