Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda driver Jacques Villeneuve will start tomorrow's Monaco Grand Prix from the sixth row of the grid after posting the 11th fastest lap in final qualifying today. His team-mate Jenson Button did not take part in this...
Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda driver Jacques Villeneuve will start tomorrow's Monaco Grand Prix from the sixth row of the grid after posting the 11th fastest lap in final qualifying today. His team-mate Jenson Button did not take part in this afternoon's session after crashing heavily in free practice earlier today.
Jenson is expected to be released from hospital this afternoon and the team will seek medical advice tomorrow morning as to whether he is fit to take part in the race.
"First of all it's good news that Jenson is OK after his crash this morning. On my side, the weekend is shaping up a little bit like Barcelona; we started badly on the first day and then we've continued to improve throughout the weekend. We were able to do some good set-up work and we've ended up with a car that was competitive in qualifying and race trim, so the day went well. This was roughly where we expected to be, given our strategy, so I'm just looking forward to the race now."
David Richards, Team Principal:
"First and foremost, we are all obviously very relieved that Jenson wasn't injured in what was a very heavy crash this morning. It's a great tribute to the safety of a modern formula one car and all the work that the FIA has done in this respect over the last few years. Jenson is disappointed that he was unable to take part in final qualifying after making such a positive start to the weekend here, but we are optimistic that he will be fit and well for the race tomorrow. Track conditions have obviously changed significantly since we were so competitive at the start of the weekend, but I'm confident that Jacques will be in a strong points-scoring position tomorrow."
Geoffrey Willis, Technical Director
"Obviously I'm very happy that Jenson did not sustain any injuries from his heavy crash in morning practice. He was badly shaken up but we hope that he will be fit to race tomorrow. After a good start on Thursday we spent today focusing on race set-up and old tyre running."
"We were making good progress but unfortunately, at the beginning of the second session, Jenson was pushing hard on his first lap on new tyres and clipped the Armco on the right side at the exit of the tunnel. He bounced across the track and then hit the tyre barrier sideways. This accident has shown that, even with this kind of impact, the combination of tyre wall and chassis strength did a good job of protecting the driver."
"Unfortunately Jenson was unable to take part in qualifying, but Jacques was happy with his car this afternoon. We are optimistic that we can look forward to a strong race performance tomorrow and, hopefully, a points-finish."
Shuhei Nakamoto, Engineering Director, Honda Racing Development:
"Most importantly we're all pleased that Jenson is okay after such a big shunt this morning and I hope he can race tomorrow. Jacques ran well in qualifying and we have shown how competitive we are this weekend so I'm confident of scoring some more points."
Chassis: BAR Honda 005-02
Lap time: 1:16.755