Australian GP: Bridgestone race notes

Bridgestone Potenzas give Ferrari 1-2 in Australia! Bridgestone Motorsport and the Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro team started their 2004 campaign with an incredible display of dominance this afternoon as Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello led...

Bridgestone Potenzas give Ferrari 1-2 in Australia!

Bridgestone Motorsport and the Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro team started their 2004 campaign with an incredible display of dominance this afternoon as Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello led from their front row positions throughout the 58-lap season-opening grand prix.

As the start lights went out, the pair leapt into action skilfully overcoming their lack of launch control, which is now banned in Formula One, and were not once threatened by the chasing pack. The reigning champion soon began posting fastest laps and by lap 29 had reduced the circuit record even further to an incredible 1m24.125s. In fact, by the end of the race, only four other drivers in the entire field had not been lapped by the Bridgestone-shod pair.

Also making it into the top ten for Bridgestone was Sauber Petronas' Giancarlo Fisichella. A consistent race from the Italian paid off well and we can expect to see both him and his teammate Felipe Massa running well this season. Jordan Ford's Nick Heidfeld also put in a spirited performance, often taking the fight to the Saubers. Minardi's Gianmaria Bruni and Zsolt Baumgartner, meanwhile, had a luckless race but will return to fight another day.

Hisao Suganuma, Technical Manager Bridgestone Motorsport :

"I'm delighted to see the Bridgestone shod Ferraris finish first and second today. After all the hard work put into winter testing it seems that for this weekend, everyone's hard work has paid off. Today's victory was a good indication that our development direction has been correct over the past few months and we will continue our efforts to make even better and faster tyres. This is only the first race but our target is to continue as we started."

"Michael continually posted fastest lap times this afternoon but this was not just a one-off performance: all weekend the Bridgestone tyres have demonstrated excellent one-lap top performance - as well as consistency - and I am very proud of the tyres we brought here this weekend. And I'm sure that the other Bridgestone teams, Jordan, Sauber and Minardi will all gain momentum as the season progresses so I look forward to assisting them achieve their potential."

Ross Brawn, Technical Director Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro:

"It was a fantastic job and we seem to be getting stronger. The fact that the same team of people are working even harder than they used to is a credit to them and a credit to people like Bridgestone who are a part of our team. The cars ran perfectly and the Bridgestone tyres were fantastic today."

-bridgestone-

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Giancarlo Fisichella , Michael Schumacher , Rubens Barrichello , Nick Heidfeld , Ross Brawn , Felipe Massa , Zsolt Baumgartner
Teams Ferrari , Sauber , Minardi , Jordan