Carlos Sainz: "It was a new challenge for all of us out there today, as it was our first time driving at this track. It's a high-speed circuit with very close walls and tight run-off areas, which requires maximum precision and concentration. The long straights here in Baku also make you run low downforce at a street circuit, which is something new in Formula 1. So, it was an interesting day. I took it little by little in both FP1 and FP2 and had quite a bit of fun trying to find out where the limit is. In general we kept it "more or less" clean and we were able to learn a lot for tomorrow. We expect different conditions to today, which was very cloudy, windy and therefore more difficult. I'm pleasantly surprised with this track, I like it. Before today I had only driven it on the sim and I have to say that doing it for real is much better: in the sim the walls are transparent, while here you have the excitement of being so close to them... the adrenaline rush you feel around these streets is big and I really enjoyed it out there today! It's a fun challenge and I look forward to tomorrow!"
Daniil Kvyat: "FP1 wasn't the best of sessions because we struggled a bit to find the right set-up of the car. However, this afternoon's FP2, was much more productive, even though we were still lacking some pace, which we are confident we can find. We now just need to try and put everything together for tomorrow. We collected important data which I hope will be useful for the rest of the weekend. We know which direction to go in and we will work hard tonight in order to get it all right."
Phil Charles (Chief Race Engineer): "It is always interesting coming to a new track and this one has certainly proven so far to be a stimulating challenge for both the drivers and engineers alike. On the driver's side, it has a little bit of everything: kerbs, walls, bumps and tricky braking - the results being we have seen quite a few mistakes on track today. I think it will continue to be quite tough for the drivers to put good clean laps together consistently for the rest of the weekend. For us as engineers, we obviously don't have the set-up notes from last year, so there is a bit more to learn than usual. It is clear that some teams and drivers have hit a sweet spot while some others are not quite in their usual ranking position. This means there are some factors that are specific to this circuit, which we need to understand and react to tonight. It will also be tricky to try and second-guess the track changes that will happen as the new tarmac settles and the temperatures increase through the weekend."
Check out our Friday gallery, here.