Sepang (Malaysia): Indian Formula One driver Narain Karthikeyan has made the cut for the Malaysian Grand Prix after lapping his HRT within 107 percent of the fastest time set in the qualifying here Saturday.
Karthikeyan recorded the slowest time but will start Sunday’s race from the 23rd position. Heikki Kovalainen will start 24th in his Caterham following the grid penalty he incurred in Australia.
“The team worked until late last night to resolve the cooling issues especially along with other small niggles and the result was apparent in the morning. Even though the grip was lower than yesterday (due to the morning rain shower), the car felt significantly better,” said Karthikeyan.
Karthikeyan looked set to be faster than teammate Pedro de la Rosa before a lock up in the dying minutes of Q1 ruined his run.
“Qualifying went reasonably well, although the setup wasn’t exactly where we wanted it to be – the brake balance in particular.
“Getting it right is critical given the number of hard braking zones here where you haul the car down all the way from seventh gear, many times over a lap. Getting it wrong can result in lost time, which unfortunately was the case during my final qualifying lap where I had a massive lockup into the final corner,” he added.
HRT failed to qualify for the season opener in Melbourne last weekend.