B*A*R HONDA DRIVER TO START FROM SIXTH ROW Button and Villeneuve qualify 11th and 13th in Brazil Jenson Button qualified his Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda in 11th place for tomorrow's grid of the Brazilian Grand Prix to start the race from the sixth...
B*A*R HONDA DRIVER TO START FROM SIXTH ROW
Button and Villeneuve qualify 11th and 13th in Brazil
Jenson Button qualified his Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda in 11th place for tomorrow's grid of the Brazilian Grand Prix to start the race from the sixth row while team-mate Jacques Villeneuve will line up directly behind him in 13th position.
Both Honda-powered drivers covered over 40 laps running in their first dry conditions of the weekend during the two 45-minute timed sessions this morning, Button finishing 12th and Villeneuve 14th. Even though a few of the teams had some dry running during private testing on Friday morning, the B*A*R Honda drivers had only experienced wet conditions on track until today. The times were very tight during both sessions, with only one second separating the top 16 drivers in the first session and the top 11 in the second.
The driver at the bottom of the times sheets during Friday qualifying goes out first on Saturday, hence Button was the first man out on track to complete his one flying lap as he was unable to record a quick lap yesterday due to aquaplaning off with in the wet conditions. The weather remained dry and sunny (24 degrees) as the Brit set a time of 1m14.504s, ending up 11th for the start of tomorrow's race.
Villeneuve went out 14th in the running order, almost half way through the session. The Canadian driver recorded a time of 1m14.668s, finally qualifying in 13th place after all the runs were completed. Today's final qualifying at Sao Paolo was an incredibly close session, the top 13 cars separated by just one second.
Ferrari's Rubens Barrichello put in a great lap and gave his passionate home crowd something to cheer about as he secured pole position at Interlagos. The Brazilian was joined on the front row by McLaren's David Coulthard while Jaguar's Mark Webber took the third spot. Kimi Raikkonen (McLaren) and Jarno Trulli (Renault) qualified fourth and fifth while the Williams of Ralf Schumacher will line up sixth on the grid.
Shuhei Nakamoto - Engineering Director, Honda Racing Development:
"Although I was hoping for slightly higher grid positions today I'm still confident that our strategy is correct for the race tomorrow."
Jenson Button Position: 11th
"My time was a little slower than this morning and the last sector was a couple of tenths down from where it should have been. It's so difficult to go out first because you've got to get rid of the hot air out on the circuit. The race set-up isn't too bad and I think we have gone in the right direction in terms of the strategy, but I think we can make a few adjustments that will help us tomorrow."
Jacques Villeneuve Position: 13th
"I'm disappointed to be starting the race from 13th position. The most annoying thing is that as soon as I accelerated out of turn one, the engine noise changed rapidly. I lost a lot of power and that stayed for the whole lap so it's very frustrating. Our speeds were down as well so I hope we can identify the problem and deal with it for the race because, if not, it will be a big problem."
Geoffrey Willis, Technical Director:
"It is always difficult to comment on Saturday qualifying since fuel loads have such a significant effect on grid position. It is quite possible that some high qualifiers have compromised their race strategies. I think both our drivers could have been faster; Jenson was disadvantaged by running first and Jacques had a mechanical or engine problem which we have yet to confirm but will investigate when we get the car back from parc ferme. We look forward to the race tomorrow when I hope we will continue to run reliably. Our aim is to finish in the points again, this time with both drivers."