Michael Schumacher will start the British Grand Prix from the front of the grid after a Saturday that saw the full range of Bridgestone tyres put to the test. The Ferrari driver took the pole position from Mika Hakkinen with a 1:20.447. Hakkinen,...
Michael Schumacher will start the British Grand Prix from the front of the grid after a Saturday that saw the full range of Bridgestone tyres put to the test. The Ferrari driver took the pole position from Mika Hakkinen with a 1:20.447. Hakkinen, who has never won the British Grand Prix, will start in second place, while his West McLaren Mercedes teammate David Coulthard qualified third. Jarno Trulli and Heinz-Harald Frentzen took fourth and fifth spot for Benson & Hedges Jordan Honda. Rubens Barrichello was sixth in the other Ferrari and Red Bull Sauber Petronas driver Kimi Raikkonen qualified seventh for his first British Grand Prix.
Ross Brawn, Technical Director, Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro
"An exciting 20 minutes of qualifying and another great pole for Michael. It was difficult to find a good balance with the car in such a short spell of running. We made some changes to the car last night but with the rain this morning, qualifying was the first opportunity we had to try it in the dry. Qualifying proved the car was not perfectly balanced but we have got something to work with before tomorrow. Rubens seemed to hit traffic which was a shame because he was very happy with the set-up and the car was quick. The weather forecast is patchy for tomorrow so that could be a big factor but Bridgestone has the advantage in the wet so I am not too worried. Williams have not been as competitive here as at previous races so I think tomorrow will be between us and the McLarens and the Jordans, which look pretty good."
Adrian Newey, Technical Director, West McLaren Mercedes
"The team and the drivers have done a reasonably good job this weekend. It is good to see Mika up there again but it was a little frustrating that we could not catch Michael. Because of the rain this morning, qualifying was our first dry running on light fuel loads but it has been the same for everyone. The wet tyre this morning was very good. In very heavy rain there is a little concern about aquaplaning but, compared to their rival, Bridgestone's tyres look very good in the wet."
Hisao Suganuma, Technical Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport
"The new compound we brought to this race performed well yesterday and gave equally encouraging results today so I am very pleased. We developed it from the results of testing here last month and it seems to suit the Silverstone track characteristics very well. I am confident that, whether it is warmer or cooler tomorrow, it will be a good race tyre. All our wet tyres, the intermediate and two normal wets, have also been tried this weekend with promising results so, whatever the weather, I think we can be cautiously optimistic for tomorrow."