Takuma Sato was the fastest of the Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda drivers at the Hungaroring today as Round 13 of the 2004 Championship - the Hungarian Grand Prix - got underway in Budapest. Despite a slow start to the day in this morning's session as...
Takuma Sato was the fastest of the Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda drivers at the Hungaroring today as Round 13 of the 2004 Championship - the Hungarian Grand Prix - got underway in Budapest. Despite a slow start to the day in this morning's session as he waited for track conditions to improve, Takuma found his rhythm this afternoon and ended the day a strong sixth.
Jenson struggled slightly more with the lack of grip due to the dusty track conditions and was eighth at the end of the second session. Despite ending the morning third behind the Ferraris, Anthony Davidson was unable to carry this early form through to the second session after hitting the kerb badly and losing track time whilst the team checked his car for any sign of damage.
"I'm really pleased to be back on track after the three-week break. I'm focusing purely on the Hungarian Grand Prix, which promises to be a very exciting race for us, not least because the weather is throwing up some surprises. As is always the case here, the track conditions were very dusty this morning and Anthony did most of the running in the second session. This afternoon gave us a better opportunity to evaluate the tyres and start to work on set-up. The car is looking strong though and we now have to continue working towards our objective of a podium here this weekend."
"I'm happy with our performance today and I think this is a good indication of how strong we will be this weekend. I haven't driven the new circuit before as the track was changed for last year when I wasn't racing, so I had some acclimatisation to do this morning. The car is very strong though and I think we should be on a similar pace as we were in Germany three weeks ago. I have come back from the three-week break feeling physically and mentally relaxed and I'm really looking forward to the weekend."
"I had a very good morning session and was pleased to be up there with the Ferraris. The track started to clean up this afternoon and we could have improved a lot, but I struck the inside kerb at turn five a bit too hard and had to come in, which lost me track time and the chance of a better lap. It was nice to come to a circuit where I have raced before but unfortunately we couldn't do a quick lap on new tyres. I'm happy with the tyre choice for Jenson and Taku and believe we should have a good chance of a strong result this weekend."
David Richards, Team Principal:
"It is great to get back to the business of racing, and have everyone focused on our results on the track. It was clearly important to maintain the momentum that we had in Hockenheim, and I am really pleased that the team has picked up where they left off three weeks ago. Today we have completed all the tasks we had set out in our programme, all three drivers have had a good day, and we have put ourselves in a strong position for the rest of the weekend. We will see tomorrow exactly where we are versus the competition, but the key thing is that today has dispelled any notion that we might get distracted from the task in hand."
Geoffrey Willis, Technical Director:
"As usual the track was very dusty to start with and this showed up with poor rear grip and traction, particularly over the bumps. The circuit improves greatly through the sessions with the result that lap time comparisons are difficult to make. We made some set-up changes over the lunch break, which combined with the improvement in the circuit made the cars considerably better in the second session. We completed all our planned running without problems and generally we are happy with the performance of the car and now have enough information to make our tyre choice for tomorrow."
Shuhei Nakamoto, Engineering Director, Honda Racing Development:
"In total our three drivers have completed well over a race distance today so we have got back into things well after the break. The grid is very close and I think the battle for pole will be very tough tomorrow - several drivers seem to have a good chance including Taku and Jenson."
Chassis: BAR Honda 006-05
Practice session 1: 10th, 1:24.140
Practice session 2: 8th, 1:21.685
Chassis: BAR Honda 006-06
Practice session 1: 19th, 1:25.071
Practice session 2: 6th, 1:21.364
Chassis: BAR Honda 006-04
Practice session 1: 3rd, 1:21.951
Practice session 2: 12th, 1:22.356