Hitech Grand Prix’s Liam Lawson has admitted to feeling disappointed over his Qualifying result at the Sochi Autodrom, but he believes that “anything can happen” during the remainder of the weekend, with wet weather forecast for Saturday.
The New Zealand-born driver ended Friday’s Qualifying session in eighth place, over six-tenths of a second behind PREMA Racing’s Oscar Piastri, who secured his third consecutive pole position in Formula 2.
Lawson, who has one pole position to his name this year, believes a top five result was on the cards before his car’s performance slipped away during his final run of the session.
“The session was OK literally up to the last lap. The way the track was going, everybody would do their first push, second push and would improve,” Lawson said. “We did it in the first run, but I didn’t put a very good lap together, and then the second run, my first lap was really good, I felt really comfortable, the car felt nice.
“We were sitting P4 and then for some reason when we went to the second push, everyone else improved and we didn’t. We just missed the window a little bit with the tyres and I had a big drop off with the rears.
“That was a bit disappointing because I think the car balance when the tyre was good would’ve put us in the top five.”
After a full day of drying running on Friday, heavy rain is set to arrive at the Russian circuit on Saturday, which may provide a fresh challenge to the F2 drivers.
Lawson, who will start Sprint Race 1 in third position on the second row, is eyeing up overtakes and moving forward, but expects he will have to adapt his driving style to the changeable conditions throughout the day.
“With the way the weather is tomorrow, anything can happen,” Lawson said. “Looking at the forecast, it’s looking pretty torrential, so if it is, if we even get to race, it should make for an interesting race.
“It’s not a track that gets used that much from what I understand so I think a lot of tracks have really clear wet lines when there’s lots of rubber down and things like that, especially old surfaces.
“But I think a place like this, there won’t be too many wet lines. Always in the wet, every lap the track is changing so you’re always searching for new lines and different bits of grip.
“I think it’s something we’re going to have to adapt to. I’ve never driven here in the wet, I don’t think any of us have. I don’t think it’s been wet here, ever. I think it’s going to be an eye-opener for everyone.”