A frustrating Qualifying session for the Jaguar Racing team especially after the initial promise shown in yesterday's Free Practice sessions. Both Eddie Irvine and Pedro de la Rosa struggled to find a set-up that allowed them to attack the track...
A frustrating Qualifying session for the Jaguar Racing team especially after the initial promise shown in yesterday's Free Practice sessions. Both Eddie Irvine and Pedro de la Rosa struggled to find a set-up that allowed them to attack the track to their s atisfaction and both experienced problems during their final timed lap. The team acknowledges that it will be extremely difficult to score points from fourteenth and fifteenth places on the grid and appreciates the work ahead of it before tomorrow's race.
Pedro de la Rosa:
"We expected more out of Qualifying and at least equalling our pace from Free Practice. We have, however, worked well today in that the car has felt better for each run. While these improvements have been well received, it's clear that we're not quick enou gh yet and that's why we were so cautious with our predications after Monaco. The new aero package is certainly an improvement and has helped close the gap but there's still more work to do before we begin reaping the rewards of this development. We are cu rrently sitting amongst a very tight pack and even the smallest gain in performance can translate into a big jump -- especially during Qualifying sessions. I'm sorry about spoiling Eddie's last run but I had little choice but to lift or hit the wall. I simp ly came into the last chicane too fast and unfortunately spoilt it for myself and Eddie."
"Not a great Qualifying session in any shape or form. My first two runs were OK but the third was compromised because the anti-stall system cut in for some reason. My fourth run was good and I was up on my best time until I came across Pedro at the final c hicane. We were both pushing hard but Pedro's approach into the final chicane was too fast and he had to lift in an effort to avoid hitting the wall on the exit. Given that I was right behind him, I too had little choice but to lift. The Michelin tyres hav e a lot of work to do here against the Bridgestones and I hope they perform better in race trim. Fifteenth position on the grid is not good by our standards but we knew this circuit was going to test us. It would be unfair at this stage to write off the ne w aerodynamic package, particularly as it has been working so well in testing. We need to examine the reasons for our lack of pace and look at ways of rectifying this before Magny Cours. We have always done a better job in race trim anyway and assuming we can stay out of harms way tomorrow, there is still a slim chance of salvaging something from this race."
"We were always guarded after Monaco and it's clear that we still have a fair undertaking on our hands. The tyres, I believe, played a critical role today with the Bridgestones having the upper hand. Both drivers pushed themselves to the limit and it's now up to us to extract more downforce out of this package before the next race. There have undoubtedly been improvements with the package and our immediate task is to adapt it better for the tracks that we are at. Nonetheless, this race is infamous for retir ements and as long as we can stay away from trouble, I remain confident, especially when you consider how well we have performed recently in race trim."