Hungarian GP: Jaguar preview

After scoring another three Championship points at the last German Grand Prix, Jaguar Racing go to Hungary looking to capitalise further on the improved reliability and pace of the Jaguar R5. Mark Webber (27), Christian Klien (21) and Bjorn...

After scoring another three Championship points at the last German Grand Prix, Jaguar Racing go to Hungary looking to capitalise further on the improved reliability and pace of the Jaguar R5. Mark Webber (27), Christian Klien (21) and Bjorn Wirdheim (24) have all taken the opportunity to enjoy some well- deserved time off while also maintaining an active fitness regime.

Meanwhile, life back at the team's HQ in Milton Keynes has been as busy as ever with a simultaneous charge being made not only into the six remaining races but also next year's challenger, the R6 and the team's second windtunnel facility (Bedford, UK) which is expected to go on-line next summer. With Mark Webber joining BMW WilliamsF1 next season, the search for a replacement is also well underway.

Mark Webber:

"It has been a busy few weeks since our last race in Hockenheim. We scored three Championship points which has once again highlighted the pace and reliability of the Jaguar R5. Since scoring those points I have also taken the decision to drive for BMW-Williams in the 2005 season. Now that this decision has been made I am keen to ensure that we at Jaguar Racing make the most of the competitive package we have."

"Looking ahead to the Hungaroring, we will need high-downforce on the car. The track has few over-taking possibilities and the corners are mostly slow. I enjoyed a very good weekend there last year as I was in the top three in both Friday and Saturday qualifying and then brought the car home in sixth place in the race. A repeat performance would be ideal but given how strong everyone is right now, points will not be easy."

"The Jaguar R5 is very well balanced and rewarding to drive, especially since we strengthened further its aerodynamic capabilities prior to the British Grand Prix. Tyres, as always, will be critical at the hot and dusty Hungaroring and our Friday morning session will be vital towards understanding better our true potential over the course of the weekend. Technically speaking, this is not an easy track to master but very rewarding when you get it right."

Christian Klien:

"Since finishing the race in Germany I have been spending much time with my family and friends back home in Austria. I was on a high after Hockenheim as I had finished on the same lap as the leader, not getting lapped and maintaining the racing line is crucial to scoring points. I am now upbeat going into Hungary as I know that we have a car that is more than capable of scoring points."

"The Hungaroring is not a track that I know well, although I have been around it a couple of times in an F3000 car. I am going to be making the most of Friday testing as always to ensure that I get to know the track as soon as possible. Since Budapest is so close to Austria I am very much hoping that there will be many Austrian fans. It is definitely one of the closest races for me from home so it's almost like a home race."

"I am very keen to score points for the team here as we have been progressing so much recently and I am really enjoying driving the car. Points are what we are capable of so I am ready to go out and get some. Cosworth Racing is making good steps forward with the engine so I know that between them, Michelin, the team and I we are in a good position going into the weekend".

Björn Wirdheim:

"I have raced at the Hungaroring for the previous two years with F3000, so it's a track I know relatively well. I finished second there last year and I enjoyed the race. The track has had a few modifications over the years although despite this there are still few overtaking opportunities. However, this year that will not concern me as much as my job will be to focus on Friday testing and assess our tyres."

"The circuit can be quite dusty and you certainly need to keep on the racing-line as if you come off, even slightly, you lose your grip rapidly. Since our last race weekend in Germany I have been busy training with our team physio and I have also managed to get back home to Sweden and see my family and friends."

"I am now fully motivated going into Hungary and I am really excited about these last six races. The season has gone so quickly already and so we are now really keen to make sure that we get the most out of the remaining races. The R5 is feeling really good at the moment and I know that we can score some more points before the season finishes."

David Pitchforth:

"I am really pleased with the progress that we have been making over the last few races. To have scored three points in Hockenheim was fantastic for us and a real boost for the team. Mark, Christian and Bjorn have all knuckled down and this teamwork is now being reflected in the results. Mark's announcement to leave the team at the end of the season is of course a disappointment to us but we understand his reasons and we fully support him. We have six races left on the calendar and Mark is just as committed towards finishing on a high as we are."

"The three-week break has been good for us all and we are now really keen to get back out on track. The car has a couple of new aerodynamic pieces and Cosworth Racing has continued to develop the engine. The R5 is a good strong package for us and there is no reason why we can't keep competing at a points-scoring level during the next six races. I am encouraged by what I see and I am excited about what we can do in Hungary."

"Thinking ahead, our development path for next year's car is on schedule and coupled with this is our on-going upgrade of the new windtunnel in Bedford. With Mark now signed to BMW WilliamsF1 next year, we are also now having to consider his replacement for next season. Mark is far from an easy driver to replace given the integral way he has gelled with this team and subsequently, it is vital that we find somebody who prides himself on not only being a great team-player but someone who relishes the challenge of taking this team onto the next level. The three-week break has helped considerably in restoring our energy levels but it's now full steam ahead on all fronts."

Dr Mark Gillan - Head of Vehicle Performance:

"The team did a great job in Hockenheim and we came away rewarded from the tremendous effort that everyone has put it. Since then we have been working very hard focusing on keeping that momentum going over the three-week break. Although there has been a testing ban in place we have been making the most of the time."

"The guys in the factory, both in Milton Keynes and at Cosworth Racing in Northampton have been working on producing new parts for the car that have already been tested on the track and on the dyno and given the green light. We are going to be bringing a couple of these new parts to the Hungaroring as with only six races to go we need to be making the most of any points-scoring opportunity that comes our way. The R5 is a very reliable and competitive car, our sixth position in Germany confirms this."

"With all teams achieving better reliability, we need to maintain focus very firmly on our process and strategy to ensure that we optimise our points scoring potential. I am very much looking forward to the remainder of the season. The R5 package is very strong and I would definitely like to see some more points scored by both drivers before the end of the season - something we all know is well within the capabilities of our package."


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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Mark Webber , Bjorn Wirdheim , Christian Klien
Teams Williams , Jaguar Racing