San Marino GP: BAR Saturday qualifying notes

Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda drivers Jacques Villeneuve and Jenson Button will start tomorrow's San Marino Grand Prix from the 4th and 5th rows of the grid after qualifying 7th and 9th respectively. The skies above Imola grew increasingly overcast ...

Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda drivers Jacques Villeneuve and Jenson Button will start tomorrow's San Marino Grand Prix from the 4th and 5th rows of the grid after qualifying 7th and 9th respectively. The skies above Imola grew increasingly overcast towards the start of the critical qualifying hour but the conditions remained cool and fine as the B*A*R drivers left the pit lane 11th and 12th in line for their single flying laps. As was the case in yesterday's first qualifying, the team were the fastest Bridgestone runners after Ferrari.

Jacques Villeneuve:

"I'm very happy with my lap because it's quicker than we had been expecting. We've been working all weekend towards race set-up so to get a good lap in qualy today is great. There was still a tenth to be had in the last corner but I think the signs are good for the race tomorrow. We've always qualified well here and been worse off in the race, but it looks like things will be much better for us this year if it's dry. If it rains then it may be a different story because it will be hard to warm the tyres. It's very close at the top and this is one of the most difficult tracks to overtake on so the start will be interesting. It will be tough tomorrow but it looks like we will be there fighting for points so I'm looking forward to it."

Jenson Button:

"We made good progress through free practice this morning and I was much more comfortable with the balance going into qualifying. The first two sectors of my qualifying lap were OK but then I went a bit wide in the high speed chicane up the hill and lost a bit of time. I also had a bit too much understeer in the high speed corners. I'm disappointed but I don't think we're looking too bad for tomorrow."

David Richards, Team Principal:

"It's very encouraging to see how close we qualified to the front row this year, by comparison with twelve months ago. Jacques' lap was exceptional but then he does excel at this circuit. From our grid positions, with a sensible strategy, I feel very positive about tomorrow."

Geoffrey Willis, Technical Director:

"We had a fault-free morning and achieved a total of 73 laps, running with Honda's latest step of engine. The performance of the car and the tyres here enables us to have a reasonably free hand in terms of strategy and we are reasonably happy with our qualifying positions this afternoon."

Shuhei Nakamoto, Engineering Director, Honda Racing Development:

"This afternoon wasn't great and we were expecting to qualify higher than seventh and ninth. The engines have been performing well this weekend and we're still in a good position to continue the fight for points tomorrow."

Jacques Villeneuve
BAR Honda 005-2
Position: 7th
Lap time: 1:23.160

Jenson Button
BAR Honda 005-4
Position: 9th
Lap time: 1:23.381

T-Car: B7A7R Honda 005-3

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Jenson Button , Jacques Villeneuve , David Richards , Shuhei Nakamoto
Teams Ferrari