German GP: Honda Friday qualifying notes

HONDA-POWERED TRIO IN TOP SEVEN ON FRIDAY Button, Davidson and Sato finish fourth, sixth and seventh at Hockenheim In scorching weather conditions (air 34, track 52 degrees), Lucky Strike B.A.R Honda's Jenson Button set the fourth fastest time...

HONDA-POWERED TRIO IN TOP SEVEN ON FRIDAY
Button, Davidson and Sato finish fourth, sixth and seventh at Hockenheim

In scorching weather conditions (air 34, track 52 degrees), Lucky Strike B.A.R Honda's Jenson Button set the fourth fastest time of the afternoon in Friday Free Practice at the Hockenheimring in preparation for Sunday's German Grand Prix. B.A.R Honda third driver Anthony Davidson finished the afternoon sixth, directly followed by Takuma Sato in seventh.

Button, who covered 12 laps in the morning session on his way to setting the eighth fastest time, clocked a best lap of 1m15.379s around the 2.842miles/4.574km Hockenheimring and ended the afternoon in fourth place. The British driver pulled his car over with two minutes of the session left due to an engine problem. The engine will be changed tonight (the first time this season for Button), meaning he will be moved back 10 places on the grid after qualifying tomorrow.

Davidson was the fastest man on track this morning, setting a best time of 1m15.756s in his B.A.R Honda 006, before stopping his car out on track with a potential gearbox problem. In the afternoon session Davidson notched up 33 laps and set a best time of 1m15.576s to finish sixth.

Honda-powered Takuma Sato finished the morning session 16th and went on to enjoy a productive afternoon, completing 35 laps overall and ending the session seventh with a best time of 1m15.657s.

Michael Schumacher (Ferrari) set the fastest time this afternoon, followed by Kimi Raikkonen (McLaren) and the Williams of Juan Pablo Montoya. B.A.R Honda's Jenson Button, Williams' Antonio Pizzonia and B.A.R Honda's Anthony Davidson set the fourth, fifth and sixth fastest times while B.A.R Honda's Takuma Sato and Renault's Fernando Alonso ended the afternoon seventh and eighth.

Jenson Button Position: 4th

"We had a good morning, so it is very disappointing that I will lose 10 places on the grid as a result of my engine change. The programme ran according to plan and the car was very consistent, but it will be difficult and very competitive in qualifying tomorrow so we have a great deal of work to do now. The tyres worked well and were consistent during the long runs, which is good news for the race. I will obviously be targeting a points finish on Sunday but the task has been made a lot more difficult."

Anthony Davidson Position: 6th

"Generally it's been a reasonably good day for me. I stopped the car on the circuit this morning after we identified a potential gearbox problem, which was a great shame considering the progress we were making. I was very pleased to finish first in the first session and disappointed to end this afternoon's session early. I think we have seen some encouraging signs for the weekend ahead and the car is looking competitive but it is obviously very frustrating that Jenson will have to lose 10 places. I'm sure that he has a strong enough car to put up a good fight though."

Takuma Sato Position: 7th

"We have had a good day today and the car looks very consistent on long runs. We should be quite a bit stronger here than we have been in the last few races and I hope we can get back to the sort of form we had in Indy and return to the podium. The package we have here is better and I am looking forward to setting up the car for tomorrow and the race."

Shuhei Nakamoto - Engineering Director, Honda Racing Development:

"Unfortunately we have identified a problem with Jenson's engine which means that we will have to change it tonight. However, the pace of all three drivers has been quite good today and we have managed to complete over 70 laps, so I hope he will be able to fight for some points on Sunday."

-honda-

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Takuma Sato , Jenson Button , Antonio Pizzonia , Michael Schumacher , Kimi Raikkonen , Anthony Davidson , Fernando Alonso , Shuhei Nakamoto
Teams Ferrari , McLaren , Williams