Max Chilton thanks British F1 fans after day of disappointment at Silverstone

Balance issues contribute to difficult Saturday for rookie

Last Updated: 29/06/13 5:05pm

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Max Chilton felt his team made progress but was disappointed with his qualifying time in his first home GP.

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British driver Max Chilton thanked home fans for their support after his disappointing qualifying session at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

The Marussia rookie, 22, struggled for balance and was slowest in Saturday's sessions - finishing the day a staggering 1.7secs adrift of team-mate Jules Bianchi.

Chilton said: "It's a real shame what happened considering this is my home grand prix.

"I struggled in free practice today with a balance issue. We made a good change for qualifying as it definitely felt better. The problem was everybody else made a step forward as well, so what happened was a disappointment.

"Obviously the gap is a big one to Jules, but as Silverstone is high speed you need balance so it escalates the problem if you don't have that.

"You have to roll the speed and get through on to the exits, and at the moment I can't get through the way I want to so the gap looks bigger than it actually is.

"It's a bit of a shame, but the weekend is not over. Our race pace in practice yesterday was good compared to those around us, so if we can keep that going tomorrow then we can make up for a bad qualifying

"Thankfully the fans have made me feel that bit better. There has been amazing support. The grandstands are full, with Union Jacks everywhere, so when you have a day like today it really does lift you."

Although he set the slowest qualifying time, Chilton will actually start at the head of the back row owing to Giedo van der Garde's five-place grid penalty which was carried over from Canada.

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