OrangeArrows drivers Jos Verstappen and Pedro de la Rosa experienced the two extremes of Formula 1 in today's Italian Grand Prix at Monza, with Jos achieving the Team's best finish of the season with a superb drive to 4th place, whilst Pedro was...
OrangeArrows drivers Jos Verstappen and Pedro de la Rosa experienced the two extremes of Formula 1 in today's Italian Grand Prix at Monza, with Jos achieving the Team's best finish of the season with a superb drive to 4th place, whilst Pedro was involved in an horrific accident at the 2nd chicane.
After setting very competitive times in the Warm Up, both drivers had high hopes of a strong finish which appeared dashed as both cars made poor starts. Things initially went from bad to worse as Pedro was lucky to emerge unscathed from a frightening series of rolls through the gravel trap in an accident that also involved both Jordan's and Barrichello's Ferrari. After a long 10 lap Safety Car period, Jos immediately sought to capitalise on his 8th position as he sliced past Wurz and Fisichella by lap 15. Problems for Villeneuve and a small mistake by R Schumacher put the OrangeArrows into a strong 3rd as the cars headed into the pit stop window, which the Team completed successfully at the end of lap 31.
The final 21 laps passed by without incident as the Team, buoyed by 6 reliable race finishes in the last 3 races, confidently waited for Jos to bring the car home in a well deserved and competitive 4th place.
Pedro de la Rosa:
"I just saw the yellow flags and braked and then saw pieces of car all over the place, lots of tyre smoke and after the smoke cleared there were 2 cars travelling really slowly and I just couldn't slow down my car enough. I think it was Zonta and I hit him on the rear wheel, this launched me into the air and then I just barrel rolled until the car stopped. Fortunately I am okay, there is no problem. It is a racing incident. I wouldn't say I was unlucky as I am lucky to be here.
I stayed a little time in the car after the crash because the car was upside down and the marshals were trying to turn it over but they couldn't so I decided to get under the gravel a little bit and crawl through the small gap under the car."
"I had a very very bad start, the same as Pedro and maybe that was good for me as I avoided all the accidents. I was alongside Pedro at the 2nd chicane but managed to miss all the debris. After that the car was brilliant, the top speed that we had meant that I could pass people - the brakes were good. I was pushing the whole race because I knew that I had to make up time from the bad start - I am still very pleased though."
"Pedro had a big accident but he is okay. I was very nervous that there would be a big shunt in the first lap as the new layout has not been well thought through. Jos and the Team did a good job, the car was reliable again and we have achieved a good 4th place although it could have been 3rd."