MONACO, MONTE CARLO, June 4, 2000 - After missing out yesterday on the grid positions they had hoped for, Lucky Strike Reynard BAR Honda drivers Jacques Villeneuve and Ricardo Zonta derived a measure of satisfaction today after they put in strong...
MONACO, MONTE CARLO, June 4, 2000 - After missing out yesterday on the grid positions they had hoped for, Lucky Strike Reynard BAR Honda drivers Jacques Villeneuve and Ricardo Zonta derived a measure of satisfaction today after they put in strong performances during the gruelling Monaco Grand Prix. The race started dramatically with a multi-car accident at the Loews hairpin involving both men. The BAR Honda mechanics then readied the team's two spare cars in less than seven minutes to ensure Villeneuve and Zonta were able to take the start of the new race. Adopting a single, late-race pit stop strategy for fuel and tyres, Villeneuve and Zonta climbed steadily through the field once the race eventually got under way 30 minutes late. Unfortunately, Zonta's run came to an abrupt halt on lap 50, when he ran wide and hit the barriers at St Devote - a corner that claimed a number of victims today. Pressing on in his spare car, Villeneuve eventually took the chequered flag in seventh place in the 58th running of Grand Prix racing's blue riband event.
"It was no consolation to finish seventh today - in fact, it is very frustrating to miss out on a point after the huge amount of work that goes into a race weekend. The car was not at all bad l on worn tyres, but you definitely had to be careful at St Devote - it was slippery. It's just a shame one other driver didn't drop out near the end of the race. I did feel it was possible to finish sixth from seventeenth today."
"It was a lottery for the race because I didn't know if the car would be good or not. We aimed to make it as good as we could for the middle section of the race and that meant working with a lot of different variables. I was fast in the race, but couldn't overtake. After my pit stop, I was pushing hard when I was forced to take a different line through St Devote and the car hit a bump so hard that I lost control under braking and hit the barrier. Despite the lack of a result, this was a good race for me because I learned a lot during the weekend. If we could start it all over again, I know we could improve the set-up and therefore have a good chance of getting a better result."
Managing Director, British American Racing
"There's no doubt that the car didn't have the performance necessary for this track. Jacques did a fantastic job and managed his equipment perfectly. To finish seventh from seventeenth is a terrific achievement anywhere, but to do it here is tremendous. Ricardo was also doing a good job on his first visit to Monaco until he was caught out by the bumps and crashed. I'm very happy with the reliability of the chassis and the lads carried out wonderful pit stops. It was a great team effort."