European GP: Bridgestone Saturday qualifying notes

Front row start for Michael Schumacher and Bridgestone in Germany Bridgestone shod Michael Schumacher was just pipped to pole position in front of his home crowd this afternoon by reigning world champion Fernando Alonso. The Scuderia Ferrari ...

Front row start for Michael Schumacher and Bridgestone in Germany

Bridgestone shod Michael Schumacher was just pipped to pole position in front of his home crowd this afternoon by reigning world champion Fernando Alonso. The Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro driver set a time of 1m30.028 which puts him on the front row of the grid for tomorrow's 60-lap grand prix, one place ahead of his teammate Felipe Massa, who has also been on top form this weekend.

Toyota Racing's Jarno Trulli has had a difficult start to the weekend after missing out on much of the practice sessions but his strong seventh place finish in the qualifying shoot-out puts him right into contention this weekend. His teammate Ralf Schumacher, who has been strong in the earlier practices, just missed out on a top ten place.

The Williams pairing of Mark Webber and Nico Rosberg claimed 10th and 12th places respectively in qualifying this afternoon but will both have to take grid penalties of ten places due to an engine change for each driver.

MF1 Racing's Christijan Albers and Tiago Monteiro qualified 18th and 20th while Super Aguri F1 Team's Takuma Sato and Franck Montagny qualified 21st and 22nd respectively.

Hisao Suganuma, Technical Manager - Bridgestone Motorsport:

"We were greatly encouraged by the competitive performance of the Bridgestone teams in this morning's third practice session. It was a real shame that Michael just missed out on pole but you never know what fuel loads our rivals were running."

"Four of our runners made it into the final qualifying shoot- out but we are also expecting those who did not make it into the top ten to have strong race strategies tomorrow. The track conditions were fine today and we are expecting similar weather for Sunday's race."

Bridgestone Team News

Ross Brawn, Technical Director Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro:

"We're very pleased with the car's performance and balance. We have made good progress in the last races and we saw that today. The Bridgestone tyres are very good here and very consistent and I think we have a good race tyre. We're optimistic and looking forward to an exciting race tomorrow."

Pascal Vasselon, Senior General Manager Chassis Panasonic Toyota Racing:

"Obviously we can be happy with today. It was a little confusing during the first session, when we had a red flag, which turned out to be an error, but it had no consequences for us."

"We are quite pleased with the final outcome for Jarno and unfortunately Ralf missed the opportunity to resume in the third qualifying session after he locked his brakes in Turn 1. But we will adapt our strategy accordingly. Both cars are running reliably and without any issues."

-bridgestone-

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Takuma Sato , Jarno Trulli , Ralf Schumacher , Michael Schumacher , Mark Webber , Franck Montagny , Fernando Alonso , Ross Brawn , Christijan Albers , Felipe Massa , Tiago Monteiro , Nico Rosberg
Teams Ferrari , Williams , Toyota Racing , Super Aguri F1