Tadasuke Makino (1m47.732s) produced his best qualifying performance of the season when he grabbed seventh place on the grid for tomorrow’s Sochi feature race, the penultimate round of the 2018 F2 season.
Team mate Artem Markelov (1m48.568s) had a mixed day. First, was the excitement of his first F1 free practice session for the Renault F1 Team, in which he acquitted himself well. But, after rushing back to the F2 paddock he suffered electrical issues which ruined both practice and qualifying,
A wheel sensor problem led to a pitlane speeding fine in practice. Qualifying for Artem’s home race was ruined by an inoperative Drag Reduction System (DRS) which will see him start 19th. Pole position was taken by Nyck De Vries (1m46.47s), ahead of series contenders Lando Norris and George Russell.
Tadasuke Makino: “The car felt good all day and I was delighted to deliver strong performance throughout. It was the first time I have seen the Sochi Autodrom but I managed to be in the top six in free practice and then dropped just one position in qualifying. I’m looking forward to a strong race!”
Artem Markelov: “That was frustrating. You always want to do your best in your home race but my whole day was spoiled by problems. It’s never good to have a DRS failure but at a track like Sochi, with such long straights, it is especially costly. I hope we can solve the problems because, like always, I will give my all in tomorrow’s race. But I will need DRS!”
Svetlana Strelnikova (Team principal): “First of all, congratulations to Tada on a highly impressive and thoroughly professional performance on his first sighting of Sochi. The first lap at Sochi can be incident-packed with a long drag down to the first corner but let’s hope we get through cleanly and Tada can then target the points that today’s performance make possible. In front of Artem’s home fans, todays issues were a bitter pill for him to swallow but he is never short of fighting spirit and you can never rule him out!”
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