…in terms of their Grand Prix preview at least – they’re the first team get to work straight after the bank holiday and here’s what the team have to say ahead of this coming weekend’s Chinese GP:

Mark Gillan, Chief Operations Engineer: Having secured our first points of the season in Malaysia with what is a much improved and competitive car the team are eager to move onto Shanghai as soon as possible. The fundamental characteristic of the circuit is that it is aggressive on the tyres and the track will prove a stern test for the FW34 and will be a good indication of how improved our tyre management is compared to last season. Pirelli are bringing the medium (white band) and soft (yellow band) tyres as the prime and option respectively. Whilst having one of the highest maximum speeds of any circuit, overall brake severity is low to medium and most other performance metrics are of a medium severity. The loss through the pit lane is high and the chance of a safety car is quite high too, with typically one per race. The weather can be pretty changeable in Shanghai with large temperature swings and the chance of rain – although hopefully not so dramatic as that encountered during the last race in Kuala Lumpur!

Badger’s Response: Mark is clearly happy with the 2012 Williams car, and so he should be, it’s a marked improvement over the last couple of years.  Good points about the safety car, it’s nearly certain for an appearance on Sunday and a bit of wet/dry changeable conditions could be just what Williams need for a chance to grab some serious points.  The car’s more than capable, but the mid-field is very tight, that said if the car performance continues and the weather helps a little, maybe Pastor can show what he can do and keep it on track until the chequered flag.

Pastor Maldonado: Shanghai is one of my favourite circuits on the calendar so I am really looking forward to the race. The circuit has a nice combination of slow and medium speed corners and good sequences that are fun to drive. It is also very challenging because it is difficult to get close to the car in front to take advantage of the long DRS zone. We have shown good pace in the first two races and hopefully we can continue to improve here and pick up some points.

Badger’s Response: Pastor, if you’re running in good solid points-hauling position, don’t screw it up by trying to catch and pass a Ferrari towards the end of the race, Williams need points – Australia was a massive let-down after such a great performance.  We love your hot-headed-ness, but tame it a little and bring home some points for a team close to our hearts.

Bruno Senna: The car is performing well and showing strong pace so I am confident about our chances in China. I have not raced there for two years so I will have to work hard to re-learn the track, but I have good memories of the circuit because it has a good mix of high speed and low speed corners and good overtaking opportunities. I had a good race in Malaysia and hopefully I can continue that form in Shanghai.

Badger’s Response: hear hear Bruno! Continue your strong form and get practicing on your PlayStation and we’re sure you can beat your previous best at China (16th in 2010 for HRT)

What do you think for Williams’ chance in China – any predictions?

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