Bruno Senna said he was surprised by his performance in qualifying for the Brazilian Grand Prix, after reaching the top 10 with his Lotus Renault. He qualified in ninth position – an unexpected result, given his team's recent struggles.
Senna believes he could have finished even higher up had he not used up all his soft tires before Q3, but was still delighted with the result.
"I'm very happy with that," said Senna. "It was not what I was expecting when the weekend started but it's good news. We knew the car had good potential here, but we just weren't sure the level of that potential – the R31 behaved very well today!
"In qualifying 2, the team put a good car together and we did a great job. It's a shame we had used tires going into Q3, because we could have had an even better result. Having said that, being in Q3 was a victory in itself."
Teammate Vitaly Petrov had a more difficult day, the Russian winding up 15th after claiming he had lost grip during his final run in Q2.
"I'm naturally disappointed with my position because we have been improving the car step by step throughout the weekend and we thought there was more to come from it," he said. "We changed the setup quite a lot to accommodate for the change in temperature between FP3 and qualifying. As for qualifying itself, I didn't actually feel I made many mistakes; I had quite a quick lap at the end of Q1 but then I lost some grip on my lap in Q2, which left me where it did."