ALBERS AND MALDONADO TEST AT MISANO The fourth day of the Minardi team's week-long test at the Autodromo Santamonica saw the Faenza squad continuing with its driver test and evaluation programme after the Minardi F1x2 cars were in action on ...
ALBERS AND MALDONADO TEST AT MISANO
The fourth day of the Minardi team's week-long test at the Autodromo Santamonica saw the Faenza squad continuing with its driver test and evaluation programme after the Minardi F1x2 cars were in action on the circuit yesterday.
Promising young Venezuelan, Pastor Maldonado, was first on the track on Thursday morning and performed impressively, quickly acclimatising to the performance of the Minardi Cosworth PS04B and steadily reducing his lap times until he achieved his fastest lap of 1 min 11.330 secs.
Dutch DTM star, Christijan Albers was next up, and as expected, was quickly up to speed, producing laps in the 1 min 11 sec bracket before setting the fastest lap of the day, at 1 min 10.800 secs. Tomorrow, it will be the turn of the Minardi F1x2 cars again at Misano, with Jos Verstappen, Nicolas Kiesa and Zsolt Baumgartner among those scheduled to drive.
"I'm really impressed. This is my first time in a Formula One car, and I just didn't expect such power. This year, I have been driving a much smaller, less powerful car in Formula Renault 2000, and I have also tested an F3000 car, but the F1 car is something completely different. It's amazing!"
"Personally, I'm very happy to be here today, because F1 has always been my objective, as it is the dream of all racing drivers. I think I did a good job this morning, and I feel satisfied with my work."
"Firstly, I want to thank Paul Stoddart, for giving me the chance to drive the Minardi. I have become accustomed to Touring Cars in the DTM, and it's good to be back in a Formula One car, although they remain physically demanding to drive -- I can feel it in my neck even now!"
"The team worked really well, but as only eight out of the 20 laps I did were flying laps, there was not a lot of set-up time. My main aim this morning was to show the speed I am capable of and what I can do in the car. I know I could have gone quicker, but considering the number of laps, I think the time wasn't too bad."
Gian Carlo Minardi:
"It has been a very productive day. We have seen a young Venezuelan driver, in Pastor Maldonado, who put in a very good performance, especially considering he has made the considerable jump from Formula Renault to Formula One. Albers also put in a very good performance today. Considering how different from one another the drivers are we have had here at Misano, I think it has been a really interesting week."
"We are also satisfied that all of the drivers who have driven a Minardi here have produced extremely good laps times at a very high level. This means the car is relatively easy to learn and drive. Now we will work with these drivers, and hopefully, one of them will have a future in Formula One."
Best lap: 1 min 11.330 secs
Total laps: 22
Best lap: 1 min 10.800 secs
Total laps: 20