Australian GP: Renault Saturday qualifying notes

The Mild Seven Renault F1 Team completed a promising qualifying session for the Australian Grand Prix this afternoon at Melbourne's Albert Park circuit. Fernando Alonso finished fifth, while team-mate Jarno Trulli will start from ninth on the grid...

The Mild Seven Renault F1 Team completed a promising qualifying session for the Australian Grand Prix this afternoon at Melbourne's Albert Park circuit. Fernando Alonso finished fifth, while team-mate Jarno Trulli will start from ninth on the grid tomorrow. Although these positions are slightly below expectations, successful preparation during free practice leaves both drivers and the team with hopes of a competitive race.

Fernando Alonso , 5th, 1:25.699
"I'm pleased with my lap: the car was well balanced, and I think we got the maximum out of our package in qualifying spec. I didn't make any mistakes, and I think that fifth on the grid is a good result after a productive day's work. I'm feeling confident for tomorrow."

Jarno Trulli , 9th, 1:26.290
"It was a difficult session, even though I didn't make any mistakes on my lap. I have to admit that some of our competitors are quicker than we had expected, but we also know that, relative to the other teams, we are quicker in race conditions than in qualifying. It's a long race tomorrow, and while our first aim must be to finish without any problems, we will also be looking to score a good number of points."

Pat Symonds , Executive Director of Engineering
"We have all waited a long time during the winter to find out exactly how quick each team is, and although things seem a little clearer this evening, we still won't know exactly how competitive everybody is until mid-way through tomorrow's race. There is no doubt we had hoped to be slightly higher up the grid, but we have always acknowledged that the fight would be very close this year. We may indeed have been a little too conservative with our strategy."

Denis Chevrier , Engine Operations Manager
"The first positive observation is that we experienced no problems with the engines throughout the day, and remain confident that we will finish the race without problems. Admittedly, we are slightly disappointed to see a gap of several tenths of a second between the two drivers, but I nevertheless think we are on track relative to our objectives. Yesterday and today, we have worked with the objective of good race performance in mind and, if we can continue our ability to get away from the startline extremely well tomorrow, I think we can genuinely hope for a competitive Grand Prix."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Jarno Trulli , Fernando Alonso
Teams Renault F1 Team