1998 Italian Grand Prix - Monza Tuesday 8th September: PREVIEW Rubens, who injured his arm in the first-turn incident at Spa, had X-rays on his return to England which confirmed there was no break or fracture. Although he...
1998 Italian Grand Prix - Monza Tuesday 8th September: PREVIEW
Rubens, who injured his arm in the first-turn incident at Spa, had X-rays on his return to England which confirmed there was no break or fracture. Although he initially experienced some pain from the injury, he recovered sufficiently to complete two days' of testing at Monza last week. He tested on Thursday and Friday, working through a low downforce aerodynamic programme for the race.
Jos ran the car in low downforce trim on Tuesday and Wednesday testing front suspension geometry modifications and evaluating different Bridgestone tyre compounds.
Paul Stewart, Managing Director:
"The Monza test proved fruitful though we didn't get through our entire programme owing to rain restricting our mileage on the final day. We will continue that work in Friday's free practice. Nevertheless, we made solid progress in the area of tyre testing. We were able to assess tyre performance and the car's balance and braking efficiency on heavy fuel loads and we now have a pretty clear idea of what our tyre choice and therefore our race strategy will be for the race. Following the successful debut of the Series 6 engine we also envisage an improved qualifying performance."
Martin Whitaker, Ford European Director of Motorsport:
"The Stewart-Ford team had a successful test at Monza last week where we ran Ford Zetec-R V10 Series 6 engines for the first time. Both Rubens and Jos used this latest specification of engine and were happy with the improved performance and experienced no problems. We hope to have Series 6 engines available for Saturday's qualifying at Monza."
Rubens Barrichello: Car no.18: SF-2/02
"At Hockenheim we were competitive in terms of straight line speed and the brakes worked efficiently which is good news for Monza which places a similar premium on engine power and hard braking. Last week's lap times were more competitive than they were at the last Monza test in July, so I'd expect a better qualifying position than we have been averaging which has been about 13th. I always look forward to Monza - the Ferrari fans bring a real buzz to the place."
Jos Verstappen: Car no.19: SF-2/03
"It is fair to say that Monza is not one of my favourite circuits because although its fast, its not very challenging for a driver - there are no real corners to speak of apart from Parabolica. The overall layout demands high speed performance and good traction out of the chicanes. The Series 6 engine felt good first time out and since Monza is a power circuit, I am reasonably confident."