Rain is usually the chance for the midfield. For Sebastian Vettel and Mick Schumacher it was already over after Q1. At least Schumacher knew why. The car pulled to the left because a spacer was missing.
Sebastian Vettel and Mick Schumacher had imagined it differently. The second day of practice at Silverstone got off to a promising start for the two Germans. Mick Schumacher ended the third practice session in ninth place. Sebastian Vettel's 12th place gave hope that his converted Aston Martin would be good for Q3. Schumacher, Alonso, Ocon and Vettel were within 0.083 seconds.
Aston just too slow
When it started to rain ten minutes before qualifying, there was even a surprise in store. Schumacher had qualified for the third row of the grid in Montreal and Vettel was only thrown out of the first knockout round in Canada because the team gambled with the tire pressures. This time there was no explanation as to why the two Aston Martins were already over after 18 minutes. "We were simply too slow," regretted Vettel.
The strategists can't even blame themselves for not having tried everything. While Vettel stayed on the track with the first set of intermediates for the entire time in Q1 so as not to waste any time, Lance Stroll came into the pits to put on fresh tires. That turned out to be an even worse plan. None of the tire changers made it into Q2. "Unfortunately, we have no excuses for the fact that it didn't work out. We just didn't do a good job," summed up team boss Mike Krack.
Car steered 10 degrees to the left
Haas knew exactly why Mick Schumacher and Kevin Magnussen failed at the first qualifying hurdle. Schumacher failed due to a careless mistake by a mechanic. Magnussen was at loggerheads with his car. "He had no confidence in the fast corners," explained team manager Guenther Steiner. That was already indicated in the third training session. "Kevin lost most of the time to Mick in the second sector. There are all the fast corners."
This time the team's hopes were pinned on the German driver in the team. "Mick's third practice session was really good, mainly because he clocked his time early," Steiner said happily. For qualifying, the riders and engineers wanted to change the camber again to combat the bouncing that had crept in. The spacers in the tie rods were also removed.
During assembly, the mechanic forgot one of the spacers on the left side. The left front wheel went from toe-in to toe-out and the car steered ten degrees to the left. With the crookedness on the straights, no flower pot could be won under the difficult conditions in the rain. "Mick would certainly have made it into Q3 today," says Head of Operations Ayo Komatsu.