The AlphaTaur rider was the second to find tire management difficult at the Japanese Grand Prix. Liam Lawson regretted using spare tires during Q1 which limited his chances of qualifying for Q3 at the Japanese Grand Prix.
Tire degradation was high at Suzuka, forcing teams to use at least two sets to fly laps in qualifying, as the red-tagged soft tires cannot compete for more than one push lap before top results are out of the driver’s reach. Many drivers set one timed lap and then switch to a new set in the middle of each segment, creating a series of late corrections at the end of each segment.
Lawson’s AlphaTaur was hit by a red flag displayed by Logan Sargeant in Q1 and had to use another Soft, jeopardizing his chances of qualifying for Q3. The New Zealander would miss Q3 by the narrowest of margins and finish 11th behind Fernando Alonso.
Lawson: It was definitely a tenth “We had a pretty aggressive tire strategy. We used three sets in Q1 and had a strong car, then in Q2 I only had one set,” Lawson told media, including RacingNews365. “Hindsight is obviously a great thing, Yuki [Tsunoda] did a great job getting the car into Q3.
We definitely had the potential now that we knew we could have done it. “But based on the information at our disposal, I think we made the right decision where we trained and with such a small margin. “I would have liked different tires.” Lawson set the fourth fastest time at the end of Q1, but he put that time into overtime as track developments took shape in the new series.
“It’s just a natural progression, probably from Q1 onwards we would find time for each tyre,” he explained. “With Q2, just from one session to another new series, where you find time. “I think that with such a small margin missing, there was definitely a tenth that we could find.”