European and San Marino GP Tyrrell preview

IMPROVED TYRRELL YAMAHA 024 FOR EUROPEAN DEBUT The Tyrrell Yamaha team will start the European season of the 1996 F1 Championship with an improved 024 car. The team successfully tested aerodynamic and suspension modifications during a two ...

IMPROVED TYRRELL YAMAHA 024 FOR EUROPEAN DEBUT

The Tyrrell Yamaha team will start the European season of the 1996 F1 Championship with an improved 024 car. The team successfully tested aerodynamic and suspension modifications during a two day test programme at Silverstone on Wednesday and Thursday (17-18 April). Regular drivers Mika Salo and Ukyo Katayama were joined by newly appointed test driver Emmanuel Collard, who drove the Tyrrell Yamaha 024 for the first time. Ukyo drove 52 laps and set a best time of 1 min 29.3 sec on Wednesday. Mika drove 39 laps setting a best time of 1 min 29.8 sec on Wednesday. Emmanuel drove on Thursday in difficult weather conditions and his best lap was 1 min 32.7 sec.

Harvey Postlethwaite, Managing Director - Engineering said: "We are looking forward to Nurburgring because we know the car should work quite well at that sort of circuit. I am only apprehensive about the weather and track conditions at this time of the year. We had a productive two day test at Silverstone and we have introduced a number of new components, principally a new undertray and some aerodynamic rear top wishbones. We also tried some small suspension modifications which Ukyo found an improvement for his driving style.

"Imola will be different this year as it has become a track where you need to make the car good through chicanes and in my view it has been ruined compared to the old circuit. Its rather a boring track with a sprint between a series of equal artificial corners. It is simply a question of making the car quick in that type of chicane and if we can we will go well, if we can't we won't! Imola is saved by the pleasure of going back to Italy and enjoying the fine weather and conviviality."

Mika Salo said: "I like the new Nurburgring. Its quite a good circuit with lots of different types of corners and lots of braking. Its a very nice circuit, drivable, without so many chicanes. It will be freezing cold but it will be a good race because there are several passing places. Imola is very boring with all these chicanes. All the corners are similar except for the only interesting one left, Piratella. The circuit has lost its unique identity. Its just another circuit now with chicanes and hairpins. This year we will be stronger there because the 024 is better suited for the chicanes."

Ukyo Katayama commented: "I can't really comment on Nurburgring because I had to miss the race last year after my accident at the Portuguese GP and Gabriele Tarquini replaced me. But the circuit brings back good memories because I watched my first GP there back in 1985 and as a spectator I was really impressed! I loved the old Imola, except maybe for Tamburello, but the track needed some improvements for safety. Unfortunately the changes are bad. I like fast corners, not chicanes. I am happy about the coming races because the car is getting better and better. I am now more confident."

Mike Gascoyne, Deputy Technical Director, commented: "We are now going to smooth circuits after the bumpy tracks in South America. Both the Nurburgring and Imola are fairly typical modern circuits - tight, where it is difficult to overtake, with traction a crucial parameter. Cars will be running high downforce configurations.

"Imola became a stop and go chicane circuit after last year's modifications. Cars are now running more down force than before the changes and it's important to have good braking, good traction and good change of directions in the hairpins. Both circuits should suit the car quite well particularly in the view of the improvements we have recently made. These are two circuits with magic names but they cannot be compared to the old tracks which were fantastic."

The European Grand Prix will be held on the 4.556 kms/2.688 miles Nurburgring circuit in Germany. The 67 lap, 305.252 kms/189.715 miles race will start at 14:00 hours local time on Sunday 28 April and is expected to last 1 hour 50 minutes.

The San Marino Grand Prix will be held on the 4.892 kms/3.040 miles Enzo e Dino Ferrari circuit in Imola near Bologna. The 63 lap, 308.196 kms/191.545 miles race will start at 14:00 hours local time on Sunday 5 May and is expected to last 1 hour 409 minutes.

-- The F1 FAQ on the Web http://www.ultranet.com/~mitchmcc

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Mika Salo , Emmanuel Collard , Ukyo Katayama , Mike Gascoyne , Gabriele Tarquini
Teams Ferrari