Paul di Resta seemed pretty pleased with himself after his maiden F1 Grand Prix weekend outing in the opening free practice session of the Australian GP.

The young Scot acquitted himself well and posted a fastest time just 0.4s slower than the team’s main driver in the session, Vitantonio Liuzzi.

"I was pretty nervous going into the session, after all Albert Park is one of the most difficult tracks on the calendar,” di Resta said.

Di Resta made his first appearance at Albert Park

“Once the track rubbered in, I was able to push myself beyond my comfortable limits. In Melbourne there’s not much margin for error and therefore I had to be careful in some sectors as the walls get pretty close here.

"The main job is to get the mileage and learn the track but most importantly to try and build a base for the drivers in the race with the optimum setup. It’s a good starting block for both me and I hope the team this weekend."

Di Resta’s ongoing appointment to the role of ‘Man Friday’ didn’t sit particularly well with the man he temporarily replaced, Adrian Sutil.

Asked how he felt having to lose valuable mileage watch the opening practice session from the sidelines, Sutil answered: "No, not happy, but it’s the team’s decision.”

Tension in the ranks already!

The team’s decision to operate a ‘Man Friday’ role is certainly curious and (as yet) not one embraced by the other teams. While it may provide the team a good excuse to evaluate its testing protégé, wouldn’t it be more worthwhile having the drivers who are going to qualify and race the cars getting the all-important lead-in mileage?

We’re still not totally sold on this one…

[Original image via AUTOSPORT]

The following two tabs change content below.

Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.