Pole for Fernando, the third of his career, and fifth for Jarno in front of strong home support at Magny-Cours. The two Renaults will start from first and fifth positions for tomorrow's French Grand Prix at Magny-Cours. In spite of a ...
Pole for Fernando, the third of his career, and fifth for Jarno in front of strong home support at Magny-Cours.
The two Renaults will start from first and fifth positions for tomorrow's French Grand Prix at Magny-Cours. In spite of a rain-interrupted opening day, the team worked well this morning and this afternoon's qualifying performance met the objectives yesterday's running allowed the team to establish. Fernando Alonso will start from pole position, the third of his career and his best qualifying performance of the season, while team-mate Jarno Trulli will start fifth. However, the Italian was just one tenth of a second away from second place!
"It's nice to be here! The car has been quick all weekend, and pole position gives me a solid base for tomorrow's race. I did a very good lap: the car was under-steering a bit too much at low speed, but it was very stable in the high-speed corners. I am happy to be on pole, but the main job is still to come. But obviously, from the front row, I will be racing for the win."
"I made a few small mistakes on my lap, which is why I am fifth. I locked a wheel at turn 13, and the car had a bit too much oversteer at high speed. However, I am pretty pleased with how today went, and from fifth, I can fight for the podium with the strategy we have chosen."
Pat Symonds, Executive Director of Engineering:
"In spite of yesterday's rain, the cars have been reasonably well-balanced from the start, which meant that we could concentrate more on fine-tuning this afternoon. This work has resulted in a satisfactory qualifying position: Fernando's lap was excellent, and Jarno also performed extremely well. What's more, this afternoon demonstrated exactly how exciting the current qualifying format can be and of course, we still have to learn exactly what strategy choices our rivals have made."
Denis Chevrier, Engine Operations Manager:
"We have achieved an extremely good result today, especially as we have taken pole in front of 'our' fans here in France. Yesterday, we couldn't be sure exactly how competitive we were, but a busy morning allowed us to confirm our strong form at Magny-Cours this year. Fernando completed a very good lap, while Jarno was unlucky to miss second by so small a margin: he is just one tenth of a second from the front row. Looking to tomorrow, I think we have what it takes to run a strong race, and we can justifiably hope to get two cars on the podium."
1:13.698, pole position