1998 Austrian Grand Prix - A1-Ring Tuesday 21st July: PREVIEW Both drivers completed some valuable work during the three-day test at Monza last week. The focus was on improving the car's braking efficiency. New front suspension...
1998 Austrian Grand Prix - A1-Ring
Tuesday 21st July: PREVIEW
Both drivers completed some valuable work during the three-day test at Monza last week. The focus was on improving the car's braking efficiency. New front suspension modifications were also evaluated. Both drivers will run the Series 5 version of the Ford Zetec-R V10 engine in qualifying and for the race.
Paul Stewart, Managing Director:
'We can't expect miracles but we do anticipate some improvement in performance from Silverstone. We worked hard at the Monza test to get the car to function effectively under braking and we also concentrated on achieving more traction to improve the exit from corners. These will be key areas in the Austrian race.'
Alan Jenkins, Technical Director:
'We look forward to going back to Austria where in 1997 we achieved our best combined qualifying performance with cars in 5th and 6th positions on the gird. A strong performance in the early part of the race confirmed the competitiveness of both the SF-1 and the Bridgestone tyres at the A1-Ring. For this year the team have been practising their short range weather forecasting skills for the unlikely event of the British Grand Prix race day rain conditions being repeated.'
Martin Whitaker, Ford European Director of Motorsport:
'We introduced the new Series 5 version of the Zetec-R V10 for qualifying at the British Grand Prix without any significant problems. Both drivers were impressed with the improved driveability and smoothness of the engine and both were able to benefit from the improvement in top end power. At the Austrian Grand Prix we will be using Series 5 engines both in qualifying and for the first time in the race. We ran strongly at the A1-Ring last season, with the cars qualifying in the top six and running second and fourth during the race, so we are hoping for a competitive showing again.'
Rubens Barrichello: Car no.18: SF-2/04
'I had so many problems in qualifying at Silverstone I want to put it all behind me. The A1-Ring is a slow to medium speed track where I know that if I can qualify in the top 10, I can make the top six if I finish the race. We are heading in the right direction in solving the niggling problems we have with the car's aerodynamic behaviour at present. We have also found a way to make the brakes more stable which is important for Austria. They key here is to look after the tyres and get the best from the brakes.'
Jos Verstappen: Car no.19: SF-2/03
'Testing at Monza went reasonably well for me though I was suffering from a migraine on Thursday morning which I could have done without. We tried some new suspension parts which worked well. The circuit is not as challenging as it was and some of the corners are a little slow for my liking. However, looking at the team's performance from last year, we know we have a car which is competitive here.'