Vitaly Petrov Will Drive New Chassis in China

Sauber's Sergio Perez will not be the only driver to race a brand new chassis in China, as Renault's Vitaly Petrov will also switch to a new-spec R31 for this weekend's race at Shanghai. According to the team however, the latter's No 1 chassis is to return to F1 action from as early as the Turkish Grand Prix.

During the late stages of the Malaysian Grand Prix at Sepang, the Russian driver lost control of his car heading into Turn 8 and ran wide, went over a bump in the run-off area and was projected shortly into the air, damaging his car beyond repair at landing.

Remembering the incident, Petrov once again blamed the tire marbles on the side of the track for the low grip in the entrance of the corner.

We have so much rubber outside the racing line, but also on the track, on the racing line,” insisted Petrov.

You can see on the TV that I didn't go wide at Turn 7, I didn't even touch the kerbs, but then the car picked up the marbles and I had more and more understeer, and I slowed than and decided that since I'm not making the corner to go wide, because it's safer and didn't want to kill the front left tire.”

I decided to come back to the track and I knew it was a big kerb. I was not expecting such a big jump.

Additionally, Petrov insisted that he was lucky enough not to crash into the tire barriers, considering that the steering column of his R31 broke down when the car hit the run-off at landing.

I was lucky because my car continued to go straight rather than left or right. Otherwise, you can imagine if the car goes to the right I would have crashed two times harder, so I think I was a little lucky.
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