The Minardi F1 Team celebrated the concluding race of its 20th season in Formula One with a strong two-car finish, drivers Zsolt Baumgartner and Gianmaria Bruni finishing 16th and 17th respectively in today's 71-lap Brazilian Grand Prix. After a...
The Minardi F1 Team celebrated the concluding race of its 20th season in Formula One with a strong two-car finish, drivers Zsolt Baumgartner and Gianmaria Bruni finishing 16th and 17th respectively in today's 71-lap Brazilian Grand Prix.
After a flurry of activity at the beginning of the race, which saw Bruni start from the pit lane and Baumgartner call at the pits at the end of the formation lap, both drivers settled down to run steady races, swapping positions after each of their pit stops.
In the end, though, it was Baumgartner who took the chequered flag ahead of his team mate and brought what has been a particularly challenging season for the Faenza team to a positive conclusion.
"It was a very hard race and I had some problems, as I picked up a cold earlier in the week here in Brazil. As a result, I was a little worried about how I would be during the race, as this is a very physically demanding track, As it turned out, I was able to concentrate and push hard right to the end with a very consistent pace."
"I'm happy with today's result and with the lap times, and I'd like to express my thanks to the whole team for their efforts this season, as well as to Bridgestone for the excellent tyres they have provided throughout the year. Today was my 20th Grand Prix and I am very pleased to have finished the race."
"All told, it wasn't a very good day for me. I started the race on shallow wet tyres and, after a few laps, had to come in, but with Zsolt also coming in, I lost a bit of time. When I changed to dry tyres with the set-up we had, the car developed a lot of oversteer, which lasted for much of the race."
"We couldn't really improve the situation, but in the last stint, I think maybe the track improved a bit and the set-up started to work better, so I was able to turn some better lap times. Having lost some of time during my last pit stop, though, I just concentrated on getting to the chequered flag.".
Paul Stoddart, Team Principal, Minardi Cosworth:
"It's a great way to finish the weekend with a positive two-car finish, and my thanks go to the whole team, who have worked tirelessly, along with Gimmi, Zsolt and our test driver, Bas Leinders, to achieve the impossible. Let's hope next year Minardi can find improved performance and continue as Formula One's fourth oldest team."
"The sport has had some difficult times this year, and for Minardi, its saddest moment undoubtedly came with the loss of Sporting Director, John Walton, in July. The positive moves in the F1 paddock this weekend involving all the Team Principals, however, give rise to the hope that we will all be able to enjoy a better, more competitive sport in the future."
Best lap: 1 min 14.743 secs
Best lap: 1 min 14.756 secs