Chinese GP: Toyota preview

Comments from the Toyota team ahead ofthe Chinese Grand Prix Ricardo Zonta - Race Driver, Car Number 16 "I am really looking forward to the Chinese Grand Prix. As a driver, it is always enjoyable to visit new tracks, and it is important...

Comments from the Toyota team ahead ofthe Chinese Grand Prix

Ricardo Zonta - Race Driver, Car Number 16

"I am really looking forward to the Chinese Grand Prix. As a driver, it is always enjoyable to visit new tracks, and it is important to have China on the Formula One calendar. Because it is a new track, it is impossible to predict how Panasonic Toyota Racing will get on this weekend, although we will have a much better idea after free practice on Friday."

"During the first hour of free practice, the most important thing is to get to know the circuit and to find the limit both of the track and of the car. Judging from the circuit map, the track looks very slow. But you have to drive it before judging whether or not it is going to be fun."

Olivier Panis - Race Driver, Car Number 17

"I am very happy to be going to China. New races are always exciting, and so much will be different this time with a new country and culture to experience. Everyone in the business world looks to China and Shanghai is now one of the big business centres with a huge population. So it is good both for the image of Formula 1 to race there and for the Chinese to have such a high technology event."

"Before the weekend itself I'll go round the circuit with my engineer. Then I'll spend the first session on Friday just learning the track without playing about too much with the set-up. You have to find your own speed before you change something. But I'm looking forward to it because the circuit design looks really nice, but also challenging for the driver."

Ryan Briscoe - Third Driver, Car Number 38

"My work on Friday will be even more important than usual at the Chinese Grand Prix. The team will be looking for every extra little bit of detail that we can pick up. The tyre comparison will be more difficult than usual and we will not be 100 percent sure about set-up, so we might vary the set-ups on the cars to see what is best."

"Of course, the new circuit will be very slippery to begin with and it will improve a lot over the weekend, so we have to keep that in mind as well and see how much of the Friday data will be reliable for the race. Like everyone, I am looking forward to seeing China and I hope to get out and see Shanghai because everyone says it's quite spectacular."

Tsutomu Tomita - Team Principal

"China is an extremely important market for Toyota, one in which we are continuously expanding and I hope that our participation in this weekend's grand prix will be fruitful to our growth. It will give us the opportunity to demonstrate what Toyota is about as we look to increase our sales to the valued Chinese customers."

"Like all other F1 teams, this will be Panasonic Toyota Racing's first opportunity to visit the Shanghai International Circuit. We have no prior experience to draw on and no track data, which places more of an emphasis on Friday's practice sessions to optimise the car set-up. Quick, but efficient work will be critical, but I have complete faith in the abilities of our team and drivers to get the best performance out of our TF104B car this weekend."

-toyota-

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Olivier Panis , Ricardo Zonta , Ryan Briscoe
Teams Toyota Racing