UNITED STATES GRAND PRIX POST-PRACTICE QUOTES SCOTT SPEED (No. 21 Scuderia Toro Rosso STR1/Cosworth TJ 2006/Michelin): "Not so bad. We're not looking too bad. We're going to see on Sunday, but initial impressions aren't too bad here."...
UNITED STATES GRAND PRIX POST-PRACTICE QUOTES
SCOTT SPEED (No. 21 Scuderia Toro Rosso STR1/Cosworth TJ 2006/Michelin): "Not so bad. We're not looking too bad. We're going to see on Sunday, but initial impressions aren't too bad here." (Impressions of the circuit so far? You were running near the top of the chart for a while.): "It was all dependent on fuel loads you're running, engine modes and tires, so it's completely dependent on that between the teams. But the track for us is quite difficult because it's so low-downforce here, and infield is so tight and dirty that the cars slide around everywhere here. So it's not particularly enjoyable to drive." (Regarding the problem at the start of the first practice, is that resolved?): "It was a technical problem. We didn't have a piece on the car to determine the front wheel speed, so therefore the car didn't function properly, electronically. It's all fixed."
KIMI RAIKKONEN (No. 3 McLaren MP4-21/Mercedes-Benz FO 108S/Michelin): "I think it could have happened a bit better, but we tried both cars on two different tires. It wasn't too bad."
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA (No. 4 McLaren MP4-21/Mercedes-Benz FO 108S/Michelin): "Balance is not so bad. It's a bit frustration, every time we got a good balance, we got bouncing. The car is just hopping. You just lose a lot of traction every time it does that. It is kind of tough. We are just trying to figure out what to do." (on whether the left rear is okay): "As far as I'm concerned, yes." (on how changes in weather affected car handling): "I didn't run it when it was hot, so I don't know. I've done six laps today -- five actually -- so it is hard to judge anything out of that. That is where we are. Balance is not so bad. We will see. It is going to be a lot harder on the tires once it gets hot, but it will be the same for everyone I guess." (on his feeling going into tomorrow's qualifying): "We'll see. It is still very early. We'll know more tomorrow morning when we bring up the revs and everything. We looked kind of slow in the speed traps. We just need to figure out what is wrong."
TIAGO MONTEIRO (No. 18 MF1 M16/Toyota RVX-06/Bridgestone): "It went well today. It was a pretty good day, I'd say. No major issues on the car, and I'd say good teamwork. We worked on old tires most of the day so we went without worrying about the time and everything. We worked in the direction we wanted to. Our engineers managed to get a very good setup, so then when we put on new tires, the times just came. It was a good day. Now we need to keep our head cool because it's nothing today, it's just practice. It's important, but tomorrow is a big day." (Did the success today provide you with confidence for tomorrow?): "Psychologically for me and the team, it's important, but you never know what the other ones are doing. Maybe everyone's very heavy on fuel. Maybe some people used new tires. I don't know. We can't control them, but at least we know what we've done. We know it's a pretty good time." (About being on the podium last year): "It was amazing. It was one of those opportunities you take that are once in a lifetime. My team worked like crazy."
CHRISTIJAN ALBERS (No. 19 MF1 M16/Toyota RVX-06/Bridgestone): "We went through it without any problem. I think the car here is good. It's working much better than in Canada. The team is doing the maximum of what they could. The track is nice. Doing the part of the oval is quite enthusiastic. It's not very difficult, that corner, because the Indy cars are doing it like a hundred times faster. But still, it is nice, and the track is nice. USA is nice."
VITANTONIO LIUZZI (No. 20 Scuderia Toro Rosso STR1/Cosworth TJ 2006/Michelin): "It was not so bad. We were working on the setup for the race, for long distance, and we're pretty happy about the handling of the car. This circuit is nice. It's fun to drive so it will be interesting tomorrow to see how we can fit the car for qualifying."
FELIPE MASSA (No. 6 Ferrari 248 F1/Ferrari 056/Bridgestone): "When you are in red, you always try to be in the front. I think it was a good day for us. Everything was in a good direction. The car was really good and even much better than Montreal. I am pretty much looking forward to the race." (About the layout of the track): "It is not so easy of track because it is a little bit slippery. As I said, I had good grip."
MARK WEBBER (No. 9 Williams FW28/Cosworth CA2006/Bridgestone): "It was a pretty uneventful day, really. We got through our program, and Alex (Wurz) did all of his work in the third car. It's good that we beat the rain, so, yeah. We're all ready for tomorrow now, plenty of information to look through. Once we go through everything, we'll see what the plan will be for tomorrow. I haven't even had a look at what the other people are doing, really. Hopefully we can get the balance a little bit better and work on the pace for tomorrow's qualifying and then work on the race setup for Sunday. Indy is a very slow circuit for us, in terms of the corners are very slow. It's not particularly challenging for the drivers, but that's the way it is. We have to be very careful not to drive too hard here, because the corners are very slow. We have the long straight section, which is very hard on the engines and hard on the tires, as well, but apart from that, it's another track that we have to do our absolute best on to get the most out of. Every single circuit has it's individual problems to get around, and we're trying our best to make the car as fast as possible here."
NICO ROSBERG (No. 10 Williams FW28/Cosworth CA2006/Bridgestone): "It was OK. It was like always, learning the track. I felt quite happy in it. I think pace-wise, I was a lot stronger than Montreal in the beginning, so it should be good for tomorrow. Speed-wise, for the car, I'm not sure where we are, but it felt good, so I don't think we're too bad. We'll just see. We got our program done today, so it was OK. We wanted to check the tires to be sure that the tires could survive a race this distance."
MICHAEL SCHUMACHER (No. 5 Ferrari 248 F1/Ferrari 056/Bridgestone): "I am happy with what we have seen on track today. The situation looks pretty good, which means we can tackle the rest of the weekend with confidence. Let's say I had more problems trying to watch the (World Cup) quarterfinals on television than I did in the cockpit of my Ferrari. When I went off track this morning, maybe I was still thinking a bit too much about the grass on the football pitch! I am very happy that Germany beat Argentina. It is a great result. Now I hope that Italy also wins, then we can all concentrate on our main objective, which is to win the race on Sunday."
RUBENS BARRICHELLO (No. 11 Honda RA106/Honda RA806E/Michelin): "Today the public was quite good for a Friday, so I'm looking forward to it. The car is all right. I don't have a great balance, but it's all right. I feel that we have to improve a lot to become really competitive. Having said that, without doing much, we are a little bit more competitive than last race."
JENSON BUTTON (No. 12 Honda RA106/Honda RA806E/Michelin): "The car is good, actually, at the moment. After Canada, we haven't really changed the car that much. There's a few setup things we've done. So really we knew this was going to be a tough meeting for us before we get back to Europe. But today has been reasonable. We've run through all of our programs and we're trying a lot of different things with the setup, and we've found a good direction. I'm happy with what we've achieved today. It's been a good day for us. We're just running through our normal programs, and Anthony (Davidson) has done a lot of running today, a lot of long runs. That's good for our race base, and I'm positive with the way we've gone and the direction we've gone with the setup."
ANTHONY DAVIDSON (No. 36 Honda RA106/Honda RA806E/Michelin): "It was eventful. Ended both sessions P1, so that is always good. It was pretty effortless, really. When the car works well, it always is. I had short runs in the morning like normal to evaluate the tires and long runs in the afternoon. As it turned out, it was one shorter run, than the other as one was 22 laps. That's the most I've ever done in a long run on a Friday. We had a slight imbalance in the car setup, and we worked on that for the second set. You have to be careful in the car balance, but we found it in the end, and it was good in the second long run."
JACQUES VILLENEUVE (No. 17 Sauber BMW F1.06/BMW P86/Michelin): "The car seems to be competitive. The track is a little bit slippery. We need to work on the setup a bit, but we should be all right for the weekend." (Any corners here feel different from last year due to the less powerful engines?): "We are carrying less speed in the banking and in a straight line. But generally a little bit quicker in the corners this year." (Feel confident for tomorrow's qualifying?) "I think so. The car is quite neutral and quite nice to drive."
CHRISTIAN KLIEN (No. 15 Red Bull Racing RB2/Ferrari 056/Michelin): "I just did one installation lap in the first session because the track is very, very green. In the second session, I did two runs, and it was very, very slippery out there. The car was actually very understeery. It got a little better toward the end because the track picked up a lot more grip. We were actually on relatively heavy fuel loads. We worked more on our race setup today." (On tomorrow's qualifications and Sunday's practice): "We did most of the work today just for the race. Tomorrow, Saturday morning, we are going to work mostly on the qualifying setup. I think it's not looking too bad for us. But really, all of the teams are very, very close together. It will be competitive."
TAKUMA SATO (No. 22 SA05/Honda RA806E/Bridgestone): "Fantastic day so far. We worked, and we improved our lap times so we are very pleased. The car was competitive and we had a very good time" (on the layout of the track): "It certainly makes us very unique racing in Formula One. We never have this kind of things other than the U.S. Grand Prix. It's not actually a corner for Formula One. It is easy flat out, but of course we know the feeling and have a good chance to get a good tow from other cars, which is very exciting for us."
FERNANDO ALONSO (No. 1 Renault R26/Renault RS26/Michelin): (You haven't been very competitive here at Indy in the past. Your thoughts?): "To be eighth or ninth on Friday is not what we did in the first half of the season. We knew that. We knew that this circuit is not perfect for our characteristics, but nevertheless I think this car should be competitive everywhere. Tomorrow, when we put the engine and the new tires and everything on the track, we will be to the top, for sure." (McLaren is making advances - your thoughts?): "They are improving and fighting with us the last few races. Our main worry is Ferrari. If Raikkonen wins the race, for us, it's even better. We don't care too much. The important thing is to take care about Michael (Schumacher) in the drivers' championship and Ferrari in the constructors' championship." (Any worries about the car?): "No, I am not disappointed. We know that this track will be difficult, and we confirmed today that the car is OK. But normally on Friday, we are second or third behind the test drivers, and today we are ninth or something, not as good as before."
RALF SCHUMACHER (No. 7 Toyota TF106B/Toyota RVX-06/Bridgestone): "Well, we had some difficulties with the vibration on my car so we couldn't do a lot, really. We had to follow that up, and I couldn't find an answer, really, so I just did a few laps. The circuit was very green, very slippery today so we have a lot of work to do tomorrow."
GIANCARLO FISICHELLA (No. 2 Renault R26/Renault RS26/Michelin): "We did some changes on the car, and we went in the right way so I was really comfortable. It was consistent and quick, which is really important. Tire behavior was really good, too. So we are looking forward to tomorrow." (Any issues with the tires this year?): "No. They are optimistic on the problem we had last year. We are so sorry about last year with the American people, but this year is going to be right."
NICK HEIDFELD (No. 16 Sauber BMW F1.06/BMW P86/Michelin): "It felt good. For once, to be honest, I was happy not to do so many laps in the first session because I was able to watch the soccer game. After that, it was good fun. It was a bit slippery, but I think it will improve with more rubber put down on the circuit over the weekend. Our goal should be as always to be in the top 10 in qualifying tomorrow and hopefully go into some points. It will be interesting to see how the weather is doing. Our forecast was always on and off, on and off with rain. Just don't know what to really expect." (How was the balance of the car?): "Well, I had two wheel outings. The balance wasn't ideal, so we changed some things after the first off. But on the second one, I had a lot of traffic and was a bit difficult to get a good feel of where we were. But I think we have a good idea because we have a backup car that does a lot of laps." (A number of drivers have said the track feels different this year. To you does the track feel different this year in the terms of grip? The lack of rubber on the track have anything to do with it?): "For me, it also felt a bit different to last year. I'm not 100 percent sure why. Just I know that the surface is the same. So the rubber situation shouldn't be that much different from last year. So probably it's because we changed from a V10 to a V8." (Other than the less power how does going from a V10 to a V8 change the character of the car?): "Of course, before we had more than 900 horsepower. Now we are down to about 750 horsepower. But we have been using this since the beginning of the year. So we are used to it now, and that doesn't make a huge difference this year because there is no corner that is nearly flat. The banking is easy flat. Corners 3 and 5 are easy flat. So no huge difference."