Monaco GP Bridgestone qualifying notes

Last year's Monaco Grand Prix winner David Coulthard will start this year's race from the front after a super-fast last lap put him on pole position after the chequered flag signalled the end of today's thrilling qualifying session. The West...

Last year's Monaco Grand Prix winner David Coulthard will start this year's race from the front after a super-fast last lap put him on pole position after the chequered flag signalled the end of today's thrilling qualifying session. The West McLaren Mercedes driver's time of 1:17.430 leads the top four who all posted sub-1m17s times on Bridgestone tyres. Michael Schumacher starts on the front row in his Ferrari with a 1:17.631. Mika Hakkinen was third in the other West McLaren Mercedes, while Schumacher's teammate Rubens Barrichello was fourth. The other top six places were claimed by Ralf Schumacher for BMW Williams and Eddie Irvine, whose sixth place is the best qualifying position this year for Jaguar Racing.

Adrian Newey -- Technical Director -- West McLaren Mercedes "It was very close between the first four cars but both our drivers were reasonably happy with the cars this morning so we did not change them much for qualifying. Deciding what to do in terms of using new or scrubbed tyres tomorrow will be a difficult choice. It was not clear going into qualifying so David tried new and scrubbed and Mika tried just new."

Ross Brawn -- Technical Director -- Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro "Michael touched the barrier at Portier. He was on quite a good lap at the time, so it was a shame he had this incident. The car's performance was not too bad, it was just a question of getting a lap together and avoiding traffic. Rubens did quite a good job, and certainly made a lot of progress during the session. We used different combinations of new and scrubbed tyres, but the times from both were very similar. We chose to run on scrubbed fronts because they seemed to be more consistent, but it is not clear which is the best combination."

Hisao Suganuma - Technical Manager - Bridgestone Motorsport "I am happy that four cars on Bridgestone tyres managed to post times in the 1m17s in what was an exciting session, but we are expecting a tough race tomorrow. We will look at the qualifying data and work with our teams to come up with good strategies for the race. Scrubbed fronts was one option to reduce understeer, but it is for the teams to choose what to do tomorrow."

-Bridgestone

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Eddie Irvine , Michael Schumacher , David Coulthard , Mika Hakkinen , Ross Brawn , Adrian Newey
Teams Ferrari , Mercedes , McLaren , Williams , Jaguar Racing