British GP: BAR race notes

The champagne is well and truly flowing at Lucky Strike B.A.R Honda today after the British Grand Prix turned into a home race to remember. The team finally notched up their first points of the season and did so in style with a hard-fought and ...

The champagne is well and truly flowing at Lucky Strike B.A.R Honda today after the British Grand Prix turned into a home race to remember. The team finally notched up their first points of the season and did so in style with a hard-fought and much-deserved 4th place finish for Jacques Villeneuve and 5th for Olivier Panis.

After the great British weather turned the race into a nailbiting rollercoaster ride, teamwork became the name of the game in the pitlane. B.A.R's strategically-placed weather spotters provided minute-by-minute updates from the factory, surrounding villages and even David Richards' helicopter, and this information played a crucial role in a faultless strategy and two perfectly-timed pitstops for both drivers.

Jacques Villeneuve

"It has been a long time coming but today's result is fantastic for the team. It was a very tricky race and to get both cars home in the points in those conditions is great for everybody. I've had a very good three days here; we just kept improving the car throughout every session. For the first time this season, we were confident that for once we didn't have to rely on luck to be in with a chance of a points finish. We were actually competitive enough and the car and circuit really suited each other. We had two great pitstops and made the right tyre choices in very tough conditions. Everybody worked incredibly well in the race so this result is a credit to the team."

Olivier Panis

"I'm very, very happy. This is a fantastic day for me and for the team, especially as this was our home Grand Prix. I'm really pleased that we were able to put on a good show for all the staff in the grandstands. I could feel them willing us on and this result is exactly what they needed. From 13th position it was a hell of a fight because of the weather conditions, but I had a lot of fun along the way. After all the problems I had on Friday and Saturday, the team reacted with great professionalism and determination. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Honda for all their hard work because we have great respect for what they are trying to do. Sometimes these things take time but it's like good food - you need to wait. Last but not least, a special "thankyou" to Bridgestone, whose continued efforts paid off especially well in today's conditions. I consider this a good step forward for the team but let's keep focus and remember that we have a lot of work ahead of us."

David Richards, Team Principal

"It just goes to prove that perseverance really pays off and at the end of the day it's all about teamwork. The drivers drove a faultless race but behind this performance are a lot of unsung heroes back at the factory who played such an important part in today's result. The strategy for the race was absolutely perfect and it's so pleasing for everybody to do so well in front of our home crowd. We have to acknowledge Bridgestone who provided us with the perfect tyre for the conditions today but one individual who really stands out within a great team is Alastair Gibson, our Chief Mechanic. He left his wife in labour to be with us today and now returns to the hospital for the birth of his first child. This is a day I'm sure he'll never forget."

Jacques Villeneuve
Position: 4th
Best lap: 1:24.949

Olivier Panis
Position: 5th
Best lap: 1:25.063

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Olivier Panis , Jacques Villeneuve , David Richards