The Honda Racing F1 Team's Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello will line up for the start of tomorrow's United States Grand Prix from the 7th and 8th rows of the grid. They qualified in 13th and 15th positions respectively today at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, which basked in ambient temperatures of up to 35°C.
It was a tough day for the Honda drivers, the challenge of finding a good balance compounded by the heat and evolving track conditions, but both drivers made best use of the car and this afternoon Jenson finally missed out on the top ten by 0.2secs.
Jenson Button: "The car felt good for my first run in Q1, then I had some problems getting started again after the weighbridge and after that the car felt very different. I had to keep having adjustments made to the front wing and we struggled to find a good balance round the whole lap. I got all of the performance possible out of the car for my final run in Q2 and that's where we are really. The times were very close with some of the cars just in front of me, which is a surprise. We will have to see what happens in the race."
Rubens Barrichello: "It has been a tough day for us today. It was very hard to get a real balance in the car and from run to run it felt very different. I had a lot of oversteer on my final run in Q2, so that didn't help me right at the end. I did as much as I could today and am disappointed not to make it into the third qualifying session. We will have to hope that our strategy allows us to make the most of any opportunity to improve during the race and move us through the field."
Jacky Eeckelaert, Engineering Director: "Our drivers qualified in the same positions as they did one week ago in Canada and with what is a very similar car given that there was only one week between races. The car is clearly not fast enough to make it into Q3. We have chosen to focus our set-up on preserving the rear tyres, which are subjected to a heavy duty cycle on this particular track. Let's hope that our consistency pays dividends tomorrow."
To check out our Indianapolis qualifying gallery, click here