Suzuka, Sunday 31st October, 1999 - Johnny Herbert and Rubens Barrichello finished seventh and eighth in the final race of the 1999 season at Suzuka - securing the Stewart-Ford team's fourth place in the Constructors' Championship. JOHNNY...
Suzuka, Sunday 31st October, 1999 - Johnny Herbert and Rubens Barrichello finished seventh and eighth in the final race of the 1999 season at Suzuka - securing the Stewart-Ford team's fourth place in the Constructors' Championship.
JOHNNY HERBERT Car No.17 (SF3-06) A mixture of disappointment and satisfaction?
'I was fighting to keep up with the pace for most of the race because I couldn't find enough low speed traction. I got in front of Jean Alesi after the first pit stop and found a bit of breathing space. However, for the second stop, I came in right behind one of the Arrows. The crew seemed to be caught out which meant that the stop was slow and I lost the advantage I had over Alesi and he rejoined in front of me. It was frustrating not to get a point but the main task was to hold onto fourth place in the Championship which we did. We have made a big improvement this season and laid solid foundations to be able to take a further step forward with Jaguar Racing next year.'
RUBENS BARRICHELLO Car No.16 (SF3-04) What are your thoughts on the time you have spent with the team?
'It's been an absolute pleasure working with everyone in the Stewart-Ford team and I want to thank each and every one of them for the effort they have put in and for the belief they have shown in me. I want to say a special thanks to my engineers Andy Miller and Robin Gearing for the car they have given me this season. My aim was to help the team finish as high as possible in the Championship and I'm pleased that with the support of everyone in the team I was able to get the job done. I leave the Stewart-Ford team with nothing but sweet memories.'
PAUL STEWART, Stewart-Ford Chief Operating Officer
'In the race, Johnny was poised to pick up a point by staying ahead of Alesi at the second pit stop but unfortunately the stop didn't quite work out as planned. However, the most important goal for this race was to secure fourth place in the Constructors' Championship which we achieved. That makes me immensely proud of the whole Stewart-Ford team and everyone involved in this effort. To have accomplished this in only our third World Championship year is quite outstanding. Rubens has been an integral part of the team from the very beginning and has played a major part in getting the team to where it is today and we wish him all the best for the future. This was the last race for Stewart-Ford and we look forward to an exciting new era with Jaguar Racing.'
JOHN VALENTINE Chief Engineer, Ford Racing Research and Vehicle Technology
'Obviously we would've liked to finish in the points today but we still managed to maintain our fourth position in the Constructors' Championship. Stewart Grand Prix, Cosworth Racing, Visteon and Ford Racing have worked very hard this year to improve our overall performance and reliability trends. We are also very pleased with Rubens and Johnny for giving extra effort throughout the year. We are sorry to see Rubens leave the team and wish him all the best. As an organisation we are looking very much forward to build on the success this year in our new association with Jaguar for continuous improvement in the new millennium.'