by Adrian-Liviu Dorofte

Belgian F1 Grand Prix 2012: Friday's Free Practice Report (MBAMGF1)

Michael Schumacher and Nico Rosberg began their 50th Grand Prix weekend with MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS today at a very wet Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Belgium, with this weekend also marking Michael’s 300th Grand Prix.

• Weather conditions in Spa were very wet throughout the day with continuous and heavy rain showers
• P1 saw little action until late in the session when the drivers were able to complete a few laps on the wet tyres
• P2 was also a washout with Nico and Michael the first drivers to go out after an hour to complete practice starts

Nico Rosberg
“Although it was raining hard, we learned a little about the behaviour of the car today. We collected some data for the starts, balance and tyre temperatures as you can always learn something in the rain. The weather conditions were very special out there but it wasn’t dangerous as long as you went slowly where the big puddles were. We expect it to be dry on Sunday so that’s why we didn’t risk going out too often today.”

Michael Schumacher
“Coming to Spa this year is very special for me, especially with the honour of being awarded the honorary citizenship of Spa on Thursday, and I look forward to a stunning race weekend. Unfortunately the weather today did not allow us to do much more than just basic work as there was too much rain coming down in both sessions. There was a lot of aquaplaning, even when just cautiously cruising around the circuit which sometimes you did not see or expect at all, so proper driving was not possible. But we have a lot of basic data from Spa and we know what to expect. Tomorrow´s practice will nevertheless be very important, especially as the weather is supposed to be much better. I look forward to going out on this beautiful track again tomorrow.”

Ross Brawn
“There was a limited amount of work that we could achieve today given the conditions, especially as the forecast for Saturday and Sunday looks better. However we did learn some things which could be useful so it was not a complete washout of a day. It’s a shame for the fans here that they weren’t able to see more track action and thanks to those who stuck it out till the end. It’s a special weekend for us with Michael reaching the impressive total of 300 Grand Prix starts, and it’s a great pleasure for me to have worked alongside him for almost all of them!”

Norbert Haug
“There is not much to say about this first day after the summer break when heavy rain prevented everybody from any meaningful running. The forecast predicts a dry circuit tomorrow, so Spa will possibly be the fourth race in a row with different conditions on Friday than for the remainder of the event. This means again a great challenge for all teams to get the set-up right during the one hour practice session tomorrow morning.”

~ Official photos and report courtesy of MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS ~

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