FIA International Formula 3000
Round 2 Qualifying at Imola, Italy.
12th April 2002
Sebastien Bourdais and Tiago Monteiro had a fantastic qualifying session in wet conditions for the second round of the championship at Imola today. Although it was not raining at the start of the first forty-minute session the track was still wet from earlier rain and both drivers excelled in the wet conditions. Tiago Monteiro went quickest after four laps and then Sebastien replaced him at the top on his sixth lap. For the majority of the session the drivers were in P1 and P2 but Tiago dropped to fifth by the end of the session when he had already finished his running. Just after the second session began, the rain began to fall making the track conditions slower therefore enabling Sebastien to hold on to his second pole position in a row and Tiago a brilliant fifth.
Sebastien Bourdais 1:53.951 (P1)
"It was a big lottery and I was lucky to have the right opportunity at the right time. We put our new wet tyres on at the right moment and it was the key to the success. We were on pole anyway with old tyres but not with so much of a big gap. I am pretty confident as even in not ideal conditions we were on pole and the car was really efficient in the wet conditions. Tomorrow is another day and we need some success to win the race. I hope that we can have the perfect weekend, let's wait and see."
Tiago Monteiro 1:55.021 (P5)
"I'm really, really happy. I couldn't have expected to finish any better. I knew that the rain would help me due to my lack of experience here in the dry, so it levelled everyone out a bit. The team did a great job and you can see this by our pace at the beginning of qualifying when Sebastien was P1 and I was P2 for a long time, the car was just brilliant. It was a bit stressful because of the change in weather, it was not an easy situation but it is the same for everyone. Tomorrow is another day, I think it will probably rain, so my aim is to finish the race, it will be tricky if it is wet so I must keep a cool head and finish. I am really happy not only to qualify in P5 but to finish best rookie as well."
Team Manager - David Sears
"Both Super Nova drivers excelled themselves in wet qualifying conditions today in Imola. We had our best combined qualifying performance for a long time with Sebastien Bourdais taking pole position for the second race in succession and Tiago Monteiro running in second place for most of the first session and ending up fifth overall.
Hopefully Sebastien will get a result that he deserves in tomorrow's race having been robbed of a win in Brazil by a puncture.
Tiago followed Sebastien around, pushing both of them to go quicker in the first session and his fifth place hopefully will result in his first points in Formula 3000.