Chinese GP: Toyota race notes

Comments from the Toyota team after the Chinese Grand Prix Olivier Panis: "The problem at the start of the race ended a good chance for a points scoring result in today's Chinese Grand Prix. Basically, the anti-stall kicked in unexpectedly and...

Comments from the Toyota team after the Chinese Grand Prix

Olivier Panis:

"The problem at the start of the race ended a good chance for a points scoring result in today's Chinese Grand Prix. Basically, the anti-stall kicked in unexpectedly and the car would not get going, so I was at the back of the field heading down to the first corner. All I can say is that we will work hard together to try and find a solution for the future."

"It is a terrible shame after a strong qualifying performance yesterday. During the race, the car felt good and consistent, so it was clear that we could have done well this afternoon. Basically, it was a missed opportunity for the whole team."

Ricardo Zonta:

"I had a great start and a really good first lap, during which I managed to overtake some other cars and gain several positions. I was happy with the performance of the car and my speed in the race was quite competitive, so I was able to fight with Coulthard and Fisichella. Even if I did not have the opportunity to overtake the cars in front of me, I was putting some pressure on them."

"After my last pit stop I lost my fifth gear and I had to come back to the garage, where unfortunately the race finished for me. A disappointing end as I think that we could have scored minimum one point today."

Tsutomu Tomita - Team Principal:

"Olivier got an anti-stall at the start due to a problem related to the engine and it was something that he could do nothing about. This made his race very difficult and we have to be thankful that he brought the car home. After an excellent effort in qualifying, he deserved a better result. Ricardo had a great opening lap, making his way up to ninth place. He drove a strong race and was looking almost certain for a points finish until he lost fifth gear and was forced to come to the pits to retire."

"We have enjoyed a good reliability from the gearbox this season, so we will have to look into what happened. Obviously, a very disappointing result after a strong weekend for Toyota in China. We now have to look ahead to Toyota's home race, the Japanese Grand Prix in Suzuka, where we will be aiming to get a good result, not only for the team, but also for the Toyota family and our Japanese supporters."

Olivier Panis
Car 17, Chassis TF104/09B
Session Classification: 14th, +1 lap (from race winner)
Grid: 8th

Ricardo Zonta
Car 16, Chassis TF104/10B
Session Classification: DNF, +21 laps (from race winner)
Grid: 13th

-toyota-

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Olivier Panis , Ricardo Zonta