Qantas Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix stewards have denied a request from the struggling HRT outfit to allow its cars to start tomorrow’s race.
Both Pedro de la Rosa and Narain Karthikeyan failed to qualify inside the 107% cut-off stipulated in the regulations after completing a combined total of just 45 timed laps across the three practice sessions held before qualifying.
CLICK HERE for Speedcafe.com’s qualifying report and results
The team’s 2012 car, the F112, missed all four pre-season tests earlier this season after failing an FIA crash test in early February.
Team principal Luis Perez-Sala says the team must now focus on improving its performance at the second race of the season in Malaysia next weekend.
“It’s obvious that we still have a lot of work ahead to be where we should be and even more to improve on that potential, but today was the first time we were able to complete both sessions with both cars and that is positive,” said Sala.
“Although today wasn’t the result we desired, we’ve fixed some of yesterday’s issues and were able to spot out the weakest points.
“Now we can work on them and find a solution. These solutions aren’t immediate but with every day and every session we’re in better conditions.
“Time is precious and next week in Malaysia we’ll have another four sessions to prepare for the next race.”
HRT also failed to get either of its cars onto the Australian Grand Prix grid last season.
See below for Speedcafe.com’s Australian Grand Prix Race Guide