French GP: Jaguar Saturday notes

Qualifying for tomorrow's French Grand Prix proved both encouraging and frustrating for Jaguar Racing this afternoon in the heat of the Magny-Cours circuit. Jaguar Racing drivers Eddie Irvine and Pedro de la Rosa line-up for tomorrow's race in 8th...

Qualifying for tomorrow's French Grand Prix proved both encouraging and frustrating for Jaguar Racing this afternoon in the heat of the Magny-Cours circuit. Jaguar Racing drivers Eddie Irvine and Pedro de la Rosa line-up for tomorrow's race in 8th and 15th positions respectively. Eddie produced his best qualifying position of the season in a qualifying session that saw him improve his time during each of his four timed runs.

The revised aerodynamic package on the Jaguar R3 manifested itself well around the smooth Magny-Cours circuit and combined with the new Cosworth CR4-V10 engine and a strong Michelin compound, Eddie is cautiously optimistic of having a competitive race tomorrow. Pedro, however, suffered from a series of problems and was prevented from doi ng any more than two timed laps.

Niki Lauda - CEO and Team Principal

"I'm pleased on one hand and quite disappointed on the other. Eddie drove very well today and I cannot fault his performance. This is what we have been aiming for with the new aerodynamic package and to have made it into the top ten is just reward for ever yone's hard work. We must, however, be careful about getting too carried away. The Michelin tyres have the upper hand here and combined with the somewhat odd nature of this circuit, we must acknowledge that our performance is down to a combination of all t hese things."

"Pedro, however, suffered from several problems this afternoon, which simply didn't do justice to what he was capable of. His first run was compromised by a hydraulic pressure loss and after switching him over to the T-car, we then discovered a problem with one of the front wheel sensors. Having corrected this, he was then sent on his way out only to discover a loss of power because of what we believe is an electrical problem. Until we get the car back, we will not know for certain. We really sh ould have had both cars in the top ten today, but at least we are demonstrating clear signs of improvement. We understand this package better and in race trim tomorrow, we should be in reasonably good shape."

Eddie Irvine

"I'm obviously pleased with 9th place and very much looking forward to tomorrow's race. I like this track and combined with our race package, I'd say we are in with an outside chance of a point tomorrow. Our three-day test in Monza last week was very helpf ul in understanding the new aero package better and I wish we had done more testing with it. Nonetheless, we have been reasonably quick here all weekend, but we must credit Michelin too for the tyre advantage they have brought here.

"This will inevitably fl atter us a little, but there is no doubt that we have a better car. There are still some issues to address but it has come a long way since the beginning of the season. We went into the British Grand Prix with limited understanding of the new package and c oupled with wet and cold conditions, we found it hard to extract the best from it. Magny-Cours, however, presents a very different set of circumstances and we will be looking to take full advantage of this tomorrow."

Pedro de la Rosa

"Given that Eddie has qualified in a superb 9th place, I am very disappointed with my qualifying session. There is very little to add to what Niki has already said. My race car developed a hydraulic pressure loss and even though the T-car was set-up for me , it developed a series of problems, which eventually prevented me from improving on my first timed lap. Given the improvements we have made to this car over the past couple of weeks, it is especially disappointing not to have taken full advantage today. I am, however, very encouraged by Eddie's performance and we will now look at what can be done to compensate for this tomorrow. The car feels pretty good in race trim and some luck tomorrow would go quite some way towards making up for today's difficult qua lifying session."


Eddie Irvine
Position: 9th
Best time: 1:13.188
Chassis: R3-05


Pedro de la Rosa
Position: 15th
Best time: 1:13.656
Chassis: R3-04
T-Car: R3-06

-jaguar-

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Eddie Irvine , Pedro de la Rosa , Niki Lauda
Teams Jaguar Racing