CHRISTIAN JONES IMPRESSES IN FIRST A1 GRAND PRIX TEST NORTHAMPTONSHIRE, U.K. - August 4, 2005: A1 Team Australia, with Christian Jones behind the wheel, impressed at the second day of the Silverstone A1 Grand Prix test, recording...
CHRISTIAN JONES IMPRESSES IN FIRST A1 GRAND PRIX TEST
NORTHAMPTONSHIRE, U.K. - August 4, 2005: A1 Team Australia, with Christian Jones behind the wheel, impressed at the second day of the Silverstone A1 Grand Prix test, recording a time in the top ten, at one stage topping the time sheets.
Jones, who's best time was 49.203 on the abridged Grand Prix circuit, reported A1 Team Australia's car was strong and reliable for it's first run, stating the team were "more concerned with ensuring all systems were in check, rather than showing outright pace at this early stage."
"I'm very happy with the car for its first run on track," said Jones straight after the test. "It was faultless and we achieved everything we wanted to from the last two days. It was also great to know I was the fastest driver out there at one point."
Setting the pace in both the second day's sessions was A1 Team France, with GP2 star, Alex Premat behind the wheel. He set a time of 48.183 - some 0.7s faster than yesterday's best time by A1 Team Great Britain. Premat commented afterwards that his team were concentrating on car setup throughout the test and he found the car nice and easy to drive.
A1 Team Australia's seat holder, Alan Jones, was pleased with Christian's achievements from the inaugural two day test.
"Christian performed well for the two days, the car is brilliant and is only going to get better with more time to develop it," the 1980 World F1 Champion said. "We're now looking ahead to Paul Ricard in a few weeks time."
With the first test under their belts, Jones and the A1 Team Australia outfit are eager for more.
"It was incredibly exciting to see all the cars on track and how the series has begun to take shape," he enthused. "We had 15 teams here and just under two seconds covered virtually the entire field - it bodes well for an outstanding series."
His comments were echoed by Christian.
"It's an honour to be the first driver to take A1 Team Australia's car on track," the 2004 Asian Formula 3 Champion reflected. "Looking at the closeness of the times between the fifteen teams here today, once all 25 are on track at Brands Hatch in September - it's going to be a real spectacle. By the time A1 arrives in Australia for the fourth round of the series at Eastern Creek on November 4-6, The World Cup of Motorsport will be in full swing and it will be just awesome!"
Sheikh Maktoum Hasher Maktoum Al Maktoum - A1 Grand Prix's Chairman and President - was satisfied, with all teams commenting on the outstanding reliability of the cars for their first time out.
"The competitive spirit of the teams has emerged, but the unity remains," he beamed. "All of the seat holders, drivers and engineers are happy with the way the car has performed over its first test session. We're looking forward to the next test and as more teams join the series, it should get more exciting!"