Zhou Guanyu to start the F1 Australian GP from pit lane

Photo Credit: Sauber
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Zhou Guanyu was left extremely disappointed as his front wing gave up on him after hitting the turn 10 kerb on his final lap during Q1 at the Australian Grand Prix. Heading into the final sector, he took the kerb like everyone has been throughout the weekend but the left hand side of his front wing could not handle the load placed on it.

The Chinese driver was 0.040s down on teammate Valtteri Bottas through the first two sectors. With the Finn getting through in P13, it’s almost certain Guanyu would have made it as well if he had a solid sector 3.

He explained what happened on his final run from his point of view.

“I didn’t do a mistake on my lap, I was just driving like every single other lap I did.

“I got to the last sector and suddenly I’m locking up, I’m missing this load and when I crossed the finish line I saw the left-hand side was missing. And I have no idea where that came from, because everything was just normal.

“I watched the replay, it came from the vibration wherever from the kerb of Turn 10, which is very frustrating to be happening in the most important session, because I didn’t really go wide. Very disappointing, of course, otherwise it was a pretty good lap.”

Sauber brought a new front wing to Melbourne. Guanyu explained that it’s more to help the balance of the car instead of pure performance.

“It wasn’t like a performance gain – it is more getting a bit more consistent balance.

“Throughout the weekend it seemed to be OK, on the upper side of the midfield battle.“It is true it is not easy for us this year to get a perfect lap, but the pace was there today, honestly.”

With Sauber having no new spare front wings with them in Australia, the driver from China will start from pit lane as he has to fit the older-spec version, breaching Parc Fermé regulations.

It will not make much difference for the 24-year-old as he had qualified last yesterday due to the unfortunate front wing problem.