STEWART-FORD NOTES AND QUOTES 1998 Belgian Grand Prix - Spa-Francorchamps Sunday 30th August: RACE Rubens was caught up in the multi-car accident soon after the start on the opening lap and sustained a slight arm injury. His car was ...
STEWART-FORD NOTES AND QUOTES 1998 Belgian Grand Prix - Spa-Francorchamps Sunday 30th August: RACE
Rubens was caught up in the multi-car accident soon after the start on the opening lap and sustained a slight arm injury. His car was severely damaged and he was unable to make the re- start.
Jos was put into the T-car for the re-start after he also damaged his race car in the initial first lap incident. On the re-start he drove round yet another coming together out of La Source and had worked his way up to 10th position and was running well before an engine problem ended his race on lap 9.
Paul Stewart Managing Director:
'An unfortunate end to an eventful weekend and an incident-packed race. Normally you would say that the conditions would have suited Rubens and given him a chance of championship points. However, even he reported the circuit was quite treacherous at the start. After his first lap incident and the subsequent injury to his arm, we decided that he shouldn't re-start the race. Jos was running well on the hard, wet tyres and the one-stop strategy could have worked out. However it was not to be. We now look ahead to the test programme at Monza next week in preparation for the Italian Grand Prix.'
Alan Jenkins Technical Director:
'We had started on the right tyres and fuel strategy the way the race turned out. But instead of a good result, we are now faced with a lot of work for our guys back at the factory to be in good shape for the next race at Monza.'
Martin Whitaker Ford European Director of Motorsport:
'Our initial concern after the race was for Rubens, but it appears that apart from a nasty bang on the arm he is fine. The rest of the race wasn't much better for us as Jos' engine failed early on. This was our second engine failure of the weekend which gives us some concern, particularly as in recent months, reliability has been extremely good.'
Rubens Barrichello: Car no. 18: SF-2/04 Retired: Accident Laps: 0
'It was a very chaotic start to the race. The conditions out there were terrible and coming into the La Source after the start, there was absolutely no visibility. I braked when I felt that something was happening in front of me on the exit but was hit from behind which sent me into a spin. I was hit again from the side and then got caught up in the whole mess. The second impact caused some damage to my left arm. It's quite painful, but thankfully nothing is broken. However, the car is not in such good shape. In hindsight, I think someone should have taken the decision to start the race behind the safety car.'
Jos Verstappen: Car no.19: SF-2/03 Retired: Engine Laps: 9
'I had a very good start and managed to pass four cars. Just as I came out of the first corner there were cars everywhere. I found a gap but was hit and my rear right tyre exploded. I managed to get back to the pits and jump into the spare car. At the re-start I had another good getaway and passed two cars. Unfortunately as I came out of the first corner Hakkinen spun and I had to lift off and lost a couple of positions. Things were looking good, so it was unfortunate that my engine failed. I could probably have finished in the points today.'