The Honda Racing F1 Team will start tomorrow's San Marino Grand Prix from the 1st and 2nd rows of the grid after Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello were the 2nd and 3rd fastest drivers in this afternoon's qualifying session. Both drivers ...
The Honda Racing F1 Team will start tomorrow's San Marino Grand Prix from the 1st and 2nd rows of the grid after Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello were the 2nd and 3rd fastest drivers in this afternoon's qualifying session. Both drivers experienced a solid morning's preparation in the concluding hour of free practice which laid the foundations for a great qualifying performance.
The knock-out format was as tense as ever and in the closing stages of the second session the drivers from positions 5 to 11 were within just a tenth of a second of each other as they battled to remain in the top 10.
"I'm very pleased with the result today and to see both of us in the top three is great for the team. The car was a lot better in qualifying than this morning and the first half of the weekend generally, especially in terms of grip and with the handling over the kerbs. We did a lot of work overnight and through this morning and I'm much happier for the race."
"We'll have to see how things pan out though because we won't know until then what everyone has been doing through free practice but I think we should feel quite confident. The team have done a great job in addressing the issues from Australia and I think we can have a good race tomorrow."
"I'm obviously delighted with qualifying today and I have to say a very big thank you to everyone in the team for their hard work in helping me to achieve this result. We have had some problems in the early races but today's qualifying shows the amount of effort we have all put into getting the car more to my liking has paid off."
"We've had two very good tests to get ready for this race and the team has really been listening to me about what I need for things to improve. I'm much happier with the car now. It's not 100% but we're getting there and I think we can have a much better race tomorrow. I'm really looking forward to it."
Gil de Ferran, Sporting Director:
"We are delighted with the way qualifying went. After a tough start to the weekend, having Jenson on the front row and Rubens on the second row in third place puts us in a strong position going into tomorrow's race. Since yesterday we have been working hard on the balance of the car and as the weekend progressed we have been steadily improving."
"Hopefully the conditions will suit us further this Sunday. Certainly, it is very difficult to predict where everyone is in terms of fuel load and we will have to see how the different strategies play out, however starting near the front gives us the best possible chance."
Shuhei Nakamoto, Management Board Member - Honda Racing F1 Team, Engineering Director - Honda Racing Development:
"Good stuff! Clearly both guys did a good job throughout the session. This has been the best combined qualifying performance of the year as we were not in any trouble in the early runs and the guys ultimately put in strong laps. Let's see what happens tomorrow."