Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda's Jenson Button made a solid start to his Canadian Grand Prix weekend today in treacherously wet conditions at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. Heavy rain and standing water were not the best conditions in which to make a ...
Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda's Jenson Button made a solid start to his Canadian Grand Prix weekend today in treacherously wet conditions at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. Heavy rain and standing water were not the best conditions in which to make a return to the cockpit following his accident in Monaco two weeks ago, but he put together a solid lap to end the session 14th.
Team-mate Jacques Villeneuve found the limit in the final corner and pirouetted off the track, narrowly missing the legendary "Wall of Champions" with which he is only too familiar. He ended the day in a disappointing 20th place.
Jacques and Jenson will line up first and seventh for tomorrow's final qualifying session, for which the weather reports are predicting further showers.
"It was pretty manic out there because there was so much standing water and we weren't able to generate the tyre grip. My main objective was to get the car to the finish and it was a fairly tidy lap under the circumstances. We haven't yet had the conditions to be able to weigh up where we are, but it looks like it's going to be a wet weekend so it's certainly going to be interesting. It's good to be back in the car after Monaco. I haven't had any dry running yet but I'm feeling good."
"It wasn't a bad lap for these conditions. It's very wet and I just got caught out at the end there. Today's session doesn't really count so all we can do is push hard and see where the limit is. I guess I found the limit in the last corner but the crowd seemed to enjoy it! Tyre-wise we seem OK in the wet, so I'll be hoping for more of the same conditions for final qualifying tomorrow."
David Richards, Team Principal:
"It's good to see Jenson back in the cockpit after his enforced lay- off since Monaco a couple of weeks ago. I dare say that, like the rest of us, he was hoping for a bright sunny day today to settle back into the car, but conditions here have got progressively worse. In the morning session we were fairly competitive in the wet and therefore it's disappointing that we didn't translate this into a better performance this afternoon. The engineers are confident that they understand the problem and, with similarly wet conditions expected tomorrow, I'm sure we'll be in a better position for final qualifying."
Geoffrey Willis, Technical Director:
"This was a disappointing first qualifying session for us, both drivers struggling for grip despite the Bridgestones being the better tyre in this afternoon's tricky conditions. In this morning's free practice session we had a sensor problem on Jenson's car which lost him some track time, otherwise both drivers are reasonably happy with the balance in the damp conditions. Clearly we need to understand our poor performance this afternoon in order to rectify it for tomorrow."
Shuhei Nakamoto, Engineering Director, Honda Racing Development:
"Both drivers pushed hard today in difficult weather conditions. It's a shame Jacques spun at the end of his lap as he was looking good through the first and second sectors. Hopefully we'll be able to show how competitive we are in final qualifying tomorrow."
Lap time: 1:38.109
Lap time: 1:44.702