VALENCIA, SPAIN, January 29, 2004 - European Minardi Cosworth brought its three-day test at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo to a satisfying conclusion late this afternoon. After a slightly frustrating introduction to the European Minardi PS03 chassis...
VALENCIA, SPAIN, January 29, 2004 - European Minardi Cosworth brought its three-day test at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo to a satisfying conclusion late this afternoon. After a slightly frustrating introduction to the European Minardi PS03 chassis yesterday afternoon, when a gearbox problem curtailed his running, the Faenza team's new Hungarian recruit, Zsolt Baumgartner, enjoyed a solid day's testing in Spain today.
The 23-year-old, from Budapest, completed a total of 105 laps as he worked through a programme that included the evaluation of mechanical and aerodynamic parts for the 2004 European Minardi chassis, as well as a short tyre test for the team's technical partner, Bridgestone. European Minardi's next test is scheduled to take place at Misano, between February 9 and February 11.
"Today, I was able to run 105 laps, which was good because it meant I could recover the time lost yesterday. I'm very happy, because after a busy day of work, I don't feel particularly tired. Strangely, the only problem I experienced was in my driving position. Yesterday, I felt I was comfortable in the Minardi PS03, while today, when I spent much more time in the cockpit, I realised I was not quite so much at ease and that I need to adjust my seating position. Considering I have not driven an F1 car for almost five months, though, I think I did quite a good job, and I believe the team is satisfied with the feedback I provided to my race engineer."
ANDY TILLEY, Senior Engineer
"Compared with the disappointment of yesterday afternoon, when Zsolt didn't get any real running, everything has gone well today. Other than a small spin this morning, he has had an untroubled day and worked through the entire planned programme, which is reflected in the number of laps covered. We were happy to conduct a small tyre testing programme for Bridgestone today, and it's also worth noting that our engine programme with Cosworth has gone extremely smoothly - there have been no problems and no unplanned engine changes. Overall, it has been a successful, productive test. We made good progress finalising the specification of the 2004 car, and Zsolt has had an opportunity to settle in. It's good to have him in the team."
PAUL STODDART. Team Principal
"European Minardi has every reason to feel pleased with its first test session of 2004. Collectively, the team has got through a lot of work and collected a considerable amount of useful data, all of which will help with finalising our 2004 car. Both Gimmi (Bruni) and Zsolt settled in quickly and have done a really solid job. I'd particularly like to thank Zsolt for his efforts, as he was in a car he hadn't driven before, at an unfamiliar circuit, and with a new team, and yet he settled in quickly and did an extremely professional job. We now look forward to our next test, at Misano, in just over 10 days' time."