Japanese GP: Jaguar Friday practice notes

Jaguar Racing drivers Mark Webber (28), Christian Klien (21) and Bjorn Wirdheim (24) did what they could today to make the most of Friday free-practice, despite the fact that the weather conditions were so bad, the Suzuka Circuit turned into a ...

Jaguar Racing drivers Mark Webber (28), Christian Klien (21) and Bjorn Wirdheim (24) did what they could today to make the most of Friday free-practice, despite the fact that the weather conditions were so bad, the Suzuka Circuit turned into a shallow pond.

The rain, failing to stop at any point during the day, curtailed the test programme of the team and saw only limited running from other teams. Mark took to the track in the new R5b-06 and worked on tyres and balance while Christian focused on tyres, balance and circuit familiarisation.

Jaguar Racing is also pleased to announce today that in order to continue to support Mark Webber in his career, he will be released from his testing duties with Jaguar Racing post the final race in Brazil in order to start his 2004 winter test programme with his 2005 team BMW-WilliamsF1. Mark will test in plain overalls and will continue to be under contract with Jaguar Racing until the end of December 2004 carrying out any PR/marketing obligations with the team.

Mark Webber:

"Today has not been as productive as we would have liked, but the weather conditions have been so bad that we had no choice but to curtail our programme. This circuit can be quite difficult in the rain as there are many rivers that appear on track and this can cause aquaplaning. We did what we could today and I tried to test my new chassis the R5b-06, however given the amount of water on the track we have not really had an opportunity to learn anything and so I will be using my usual race chassis on Sunday."

"It's frustrating for all of us to have prepared so much for this weekend and then to be limited to so little running on track. The weather forecast is not looking good for tomorrow either so we will just have to make the most of any running that we can".

Christian Klien:

"It's been a really wet day here at Suzuka and we have been badly affected by the rain. The conditions have meant that we haveonly managed a small amount of running on track and this has not helped me familiarise myself with the layout as much as I would have liked."

"The track does seem like good fun though and it reminds me of the Spa layout. It seems quite challenging and given the number of rivers running through it at the moment, also quite difficult! There is a typhoon due to hit Suzuka tomorrow so I am not too sure what it going to happen to qualifying, could make it all very interesting!

Björn Wirdheim:

"We have a limited number of wet tyres with us this weekend and I have been trying to help the team today by not running. Usually I am doing the opposite and trying to do as many laps as possible but given the really wet conditions that we are experiencing it is important for Mark and Christian to have as many spare extreme wet-tyres for the race as possible".

Dr Mark Gillan -- Head of Vehicle Performance:

"Weather conditions have made testing very difficult for us today and as a result we have completed only a small amount of running. We have also been trying to limit the number of wet tyres we use so that there are enough left over for Sunday's race. As a result Bjorn has done no running today and Mark and Christian have only completed about eleven each."

"It appears that Typhoon Ma-on is heading our way tomorrow and we are waiting to see if qualifying will go ahead. These are not the sort of conditions that we would have liked but the weather is one of the few things out of our control and we will have to make the most of any running we can between now and Sunday's race".

Mark Webber
Position: 15th
Best time: 1:50.666
Chassis: R5b-06

Christian Klien
Position: 17th
Best time: 1:52.232
Chassis: R5 -01

-jaguar-

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Mark Webber , Bjorn Wirdheim , Christian Klien
Teams Williams , Jaguar Racing