Suzuka (JAP). Ralf Schumacher came second in today's First Qualifying session of the 2003 Japanese Grand Prix while team-mate Juan Pablo Montoya was only eighth, after he lost some valuable time in this morning's Free Practice session due to a ...
Suzuka (JAP). Ralf Schumacher came second in today's First Qualifying session of the 2003 Japanese Grand Prix while team-mate Juan Pablo Montoya was only eighth, after he lost some valuable time in this morning's Free Practice session due to a technical problem, which prevented him from optimising his car's set-up.
"We changed the car quite a lot during this morning's Free Practice and the result was pretty good, which clearly shows we went the right way. Tomorrow's Free Practice sessions will be very important to us since we didn't have much running this morning due to some problems and we need some more time to improve our car. However, I think it is looking promising for us so far, also thanks to our Michelin tyres, which seem to be very good and can provide an important contribution to our performance. With regards to the revised track, I think they made a good job, just the 130R corner is a little bit too bumpy."
Juan Pablo Montoya:
"It was obviously very difficult for me to set a good time in today's First Qualifying due to the fact that I lost most of this morning's Free Practice session because of a gearbox problem. During qualifying, my car was not at all ideally set up nor was it comfortable to drive and I pushed as hard as I could. It's going to be quite a lot of work for us tomorrow to make up for the lost time and get it back together. However, Ralf's time shows that we have a good car and there's definitely much more to come."
Sam Michael (Chief Operations Engineer, WilliamsF1):
"We have brought some new aero parts to Suzuka, which seem to work well and it was obviously not a bad first day here for Ralf. Juan had a disadvantage as he lost track time this morning due to a gearbox problem. We still have a lot of work to do on the race set-up in particular, to get the balance right for the Esses section, which is the most important part of the circuit."
Mario Theissen (BMW Motorsport Director):
"Ralf put a very good lap together, especially in the second sector, where he was the quickest. The changes on the set-up of the car were according to expectation. Eighth place for Juan Pablo is also ok, considering this morning he could only pur a very few laps under his belt due to a gearbox problem. Also the last step advancement of the P83 engine ran today without any problems."
Overcast , dry. Temp: 24°C Air, 26-27°C Track
Ralf Schumacher: 2nd
Chassis: FW25 07 (Spare car FW25 02)
Best time: 1.30.343min
Juan Pablo Montoya: 8th
Chassis: FW25 06 (Spare car FW25 04)
Best time: 1.31.201min