German GP Saturday Bridgestone notes

Hockenheim, July/ 31/ 1999 1999 GERMAN GRAND PRIX - QUALIFYING Hakkinen hot in Hockenheim In temperatures which exceeded 30 degrees, Mika Hakkinen thrilled the fans packing the famous concrete stadium at Hockenheim today with a ...

Hockenheim, July/ 31/ 1999 1999 GERMAN GRAND PRIX - QUALIFYING

Hakkinen hot in Hockenheim

In temperatures which exceeded 30 degrees, Mika Hakkinen thrilled the fans packing the famous concrete stadium at Hockenheim today with a performance which gave him his eighth pole position of the 1999 season. But it was a close-fought battle, with Heinz-Harald Frentzen on top form for Jordan- Mugen/Honda as he snatched the other position on the front row by only 0.05 second.

Yoshihiko Ichikawa, Bridgestone Motorsport Technical Manager: "The majority of the drivers have opted for the Soft compound of Bridgestone tyre for qualifying and the race. It was the logical choice, even under the pleasantly warm conditions which have blessed Hockenheim today.

"We are still analysing the remains of David Coulthard's damaged tyre to check what happened to it. An official statement will be released as soon as we finish checking all the data and some pieces of the rubber. For tomorrow, we believe that some teams may choose a two pit stop strategy because of degradation with the Soft tyre."

Steve Hallam, Chief Engineer, West McLaren Mercedes: "Having tested in Monza, we understood the behaviour of the tyres as well as we could. The practice sessions have been quite positive. We were working both on car setup and tyre durability, so today's choice of tyre was fairly straightforward and we came to qualifying knowing exactly what we wanted to do. Qualifying worked out well, especially for Mika, and it was a very close- fought session, with Frentzen and Jordan doing an outstanding job. David had to use the T-car for qualifying after a problem with a rear tyre on his race car which is still being investigated. We obviously cannot make any comment until the Bridgestone engineers have examined the pieces retrieved from the circuit. But David was able to resume qualifying with his original car after repairs had been made. We are expecting another hot day tomorrow, which can sometimes affect the outcome on a fast circuit like this."

Mike Gascoyne, Technical Director, Jordan Grand Prix: "We were always confident about being able to perform well here. The car has performed consistently well on low-downforce tracks and we had a very good Monza test. It is great to have Heinz-Harald on the front row, although it is a little disappointing for Damon. He was quick yesterday, but this afternoon he was unlucky with the traffic. We have been concentrating on the Soft compound and the car/tyre performance has been getting better and better all weekend. We knew to expect a lot of degradation on the first set of tyres to be used on Friday, but this is due to the condition of the circuit. As the track surface has cleaned up, so the tyres have got better and better. The lose a little grip after the first lap, but after that there is not a lot of drop-off in performance, and I think that situation will get even better in the race. One stop is no problem on the Soft tyre, and thanks to its consistency we have been able to do a lot of work on finding a good balance in the car, in fact we didn't change the cars at all for qualifying."

TEMPERATURES                    AIR     TRACK   WEATHER 
Morning                         23-28   27-35   Sunny - dry     
Afternoon                       30-30   38-39   Sunny - dry 

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Heinz-Harald Frentzen , David Coulthard , Mika Hakkinen , Mike Gascoyne
Teams Mercedes , McLaren , Jordan