2017 Chinese Grand Prix radio notes: Qualifying

2017 Chinese Grand Prix

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Alonso drove “like an animal”, Grosjean lost his cool and Hamilton won the day. Here’s what the drivers had to say on the radios in qualifying.

Third practice

A busy final hour of practice was headed by Ferrari.

Ocon: “I couldn’t downshift in the first corner.”
“OK, we’ll have a look.”

“Good lap. Bit more time to find in turn 11, just braking point again.”
Stroll: “I can’t really brake later turn 11 due to mid-corner snap.”

To Raikkonen: “Good job, Kimi, you caught up a lot, there.”

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To Hulkenberg: “OK Nico tyre temperatures are actually decent. Left-front a little low, maybe right-rear, but not too bad.”

To Kvyat: “Don’t let the tyres cool down too much.”



Chinese GP qualifying in pictures
The first phase of qualifying was swung by Antonio Giovinazzi’s crash in the final moments. That thwarted the efforts of Romain Grosjean, who’d spun earlier in the session, Jolyon Palmer and Esteban Ocon to reach Q2. It also ensured Max Verstappen would not progress, though his misfire probably ensured Q2 was unreachable for him anyway.

“Palmer: “Bottas on an out-lap, yeah?”
“Yeah Bottas is on an out-lap. Cars in front of you are all on out-laps.”

To Ocon: “So there’s cars bunching ahead, you’ll need to gap.”

To Raikkonen: “So updated target, Kimi, 34.6 at the minute.”

To Grosjean: “OK, you have a puncture.”
“Grosjean: “Any explanation for what happened?”
“Not yet, I’m looking.”

Grosjean: “OK box.”
“OK, understood, yeah. OK you have a puncture. Just watching the pictures, you have a lot of flapping on the rear-left tyre. I think the rear-left is coming apart but the pressure’s still OK.”

“Remember for the next attempt to use DRS when you launched. This time you didn’t use it.
Magnussen: “I pressed it but it didn’t work.”
“OK we are checking. You just need to press it slightly later. I think your call was too anticipated.”

Alonso: “Not much to improve. I pushed like an animal.”

Verstappen: “I hear something not right with the engine mate. No, it’s still the same.”
“OK Max, box.”

“You’ll be into mode ten before turn 16. If you feel the same issue just go straight back into mode 12 and carry on.”
Verstappen: “Same problem.”
“Mode 12, carry on.”

Ocon “would’ve got through”
“That’s unfortunate Esteban ’cause we was easy through with that lap, we was on for a mid-to-low ’34s you would’ve got through.”
Ocon: “Copy that.”

To Verstappen: “Box, Max. Sorry about that, mate, that is us done.”

Palmer: “Oh no!”
“Sorry about that mate. P18, that was unfortunate”
Palmer: “Agh.”

Grosjean: “[Censored by FOM] [censored by FOM] [censored by FOM].”
“Yep, I hear you, brother.”
“Pit then?”
“Unfortunately, yes. That’s it.”
“When it’s not your day it’s not your day. Fudge.”

Vandoorne: “That was not a great lap.”
“Copy. So Stoffel we are currently P16. There’s a car stopped on the start/finish straight now,. yellow flags. The cars are going to struggle to improve their lap times so I’ll keep you updated where we finish. Currently P16.”
“OK Stoffel we finished P16 now the cars struggled to improve because of the yellow flag at the end of the session. Just half a tenth off Giovinazzi, unfortunately.”


Stroll didn’t keep off the (artificial) grass
Alonso couldn’t quite match his best effort with his final lap but he wouldn’t have been any higher had he done so.

To Alonso: “And we finished P13. I think you did a good lap there. There obviously wasn’t anything more to come from the car.”

To Magnussen: “OK we are in 12th position. Seven hundredths of a session from Q3. So a good step forward from Melbourne.”

Sainz: “Yeah we didn’t make it, no?”
“P11, Carlos.”
Sainz: “Yes. Not enough stability, again.”

Kvyat: “Good job. OK still understeer, let’s try to cure it.”
“OK Do you want even more on the front?”
Kvyat: “Yeah. I would like to.”

Hulkenberg: “Nice one.”
“Looks good. Looks like a good lap.”

“OK good job P10.”
Stroll: “That’s nice. Sorry, I ran on that Astroturf again.”
“Copy that. That was good.”


Raikkonen was puzzled by a loss of pace
After setting a record-breaking time at the end of Q2, Raikkonen fell far short of it at the beginning of Q3.

Raikkonen: “Very bad grip at the rear, it’s not as good. I don’t know, is the settings different?”
“All looks the same to me, Kimi.”

Vettel: “OK I must’ve got a gust in…”
“Turn 12, yeah.”
Vettel: “Yeah 12-13.”
“Not ideal.”

To Ricciardo: “Temperatures look in a good place this time, did a good job.”

Lewis Hamilton came to the fore when it mattered, securing his sixth Chinese Grand Prix pole position ahead of Sebastian Vettel. The Ferrari driver kept Valtteri Bottas off the front row by a tiny margin.

“OK Lewis that’s pole position mate, great job. Got Vettel in P2, he’s a 31.8 too so very close.”

“P2 Sebastian.”
Vettel: “How much was missing?”
“Less than two-tenths.”
“[Censored by FOM]. I didn’t have that. I didn’t have that it was a perfect lap, last corner I probably lost five-hundreths but it was a really good lap. We didn’t have that. Anyway the car was good. Grazie tutti, grande lavoro.”

Vettel said pole wasn’t possible
“OK so. Blimey. So that was one-thousandth you were pipped for P2 by Vettel. So order is Lewis, Vettel, yourself, Raikkonen. Good job Caltteri. Purple sector three again.”
Bottas: “Copy that thanks guy. I think last time it was two thousandths? I don’t know how much.”
“Yeah it’s been very close.”

“OK nice job Felipe. Close but we got it. P6. Good job.”
Massa: “Yeah thank you guys, was a good one.”

Kvyat: “Ah, damn it, rear lock. But it was pretty much everything there guys.”
“Copy that Danny. Maybe a step too far in turn 14. I’ll keep you posted where we are. P9, sorry. Stroll P10.”
Kvyat: “Damn it. How much off?”
“0.01. Perez is the target.”

“P10. Fantastic effort for your first clean qualifying.”
Stroll: “My lap wasn’t great. Just one shot at it. Good job.”

2017 Chinese Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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2 comments on “2017 Chinese Grand Prix radio notes: Qualifying”

  1. What do you think of Strolls comment at the end? I like that he’s not satisfied with 10th.

  2. Obviously the Canadian apologizing

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