Michael is third after the two Williams Jean Todt: "We knew it would be a very tough qualifying session and so it proved. Michael managed to grab third place on the grid by a whisker, which will be important for tomorrow's race. Unfortunately,...
Michael is third after the two Williams
"We knew it would be a very tough qualifying session and so it proved. Michael managed to grab third place on the grid by a whisker, which will be important for tomorrow's race. Unfortunately, Rubens had too much understeer on his lap, evident from the first split time, at the end of a sector where he had previously been very quick all day. The race should be very close between the various chassis-engine-tyre packages. Given the points allocation system this year, reliability will be the crucial factor."
"We are not quite where I expected to be, as we thought this circuit would suit our car better. I don't think we have a problem in any particular area as it is more a case of the opposition getting stronger. It's true I am quickest in the first sector which could give an overtaking advantage, but I would trade that for pole if I could. At least third place means I am on the clean side of the track, which could be helpful tomorrow afternoon."
"As for the changes to the circuit, I think it is a reasonable improvement over the old layout which was twisty and slow and a bit Mickey Mouse. After what happened at the Nurburgring, starting next to Juan Pablo is fine. We have been very close very often and that is part of racing and I am looking forward to it."
"I am very disappointed. On my quick lap, the car was handling differently to the way it had done in the warm-up, picking up a lot of understeer. All day, I had been quickest in the first sector, but in qualifying no less than four drivers were quicker than me. Now I have to hope for a good result in the race, but it will be hard. So far we have had a very reliable car and we will be counting on that."
"Naturally, we are disappointed with the way qualifying went today, as we were unable to fight for pole position. We hope to get a good result tomorrow, mainly through our reliability. It is clear that we have to improve the performance level of our package. We know what we have to do and we will be working flat out, along with our technical partners, to do just that in the coming weeks."
Michael Schumacher: 3rd
1.15.480 3 laps
Rubens Barrichello 8th
3 laps chassis 230