A day that started with high hopes ended in disappointment for European Minardi Cosworth, as neither of the Faenza team's cars finished today's San Marino Grand Prix. Jos Verstappen started the race from the pit lane as the result of the crash he...
A day that started with high hopes ended in disappointment for European Minardi Cosworth, as neither of the Faenza team's cars finished today's San Marino Grand Prix. Jos Verstappen started the race from the pit lane as the result of the crash he had during Saturday's final qualifying session, which prevented him from setting a time.
Team mate, Justin Wilson, ran a solid race until his first pit stop, on lap 21. Unfortunately, the team's fuel rig failed to deliver its correct load at the stop and Wilson returned to the pits on the following lap. Despite the team's best efforts, however, the problem couldn't be corrected, and there was no choice but to retire Wilson's car.
By comparison, Verstappen pitted on schedule, on lap 20, and then pressed on until lap 40, when his car stopped on the circuit with an electrical short circuit. The team will be hoping for better fortunes in the Spanish Grand Prix, in two weeks' time.
"We elected to take on fuel at the end of the formation lap and start from the pit lane, slotting in behind Ralph Firman and Jos. After four or five laps, the car started to slide around quite a bit, so I decided to maintain the best pace I could and just hang on to the pit stop. When I did come in for tyres and fuel, the stop seemed to last longer than normal. I didn't realise there was a problem until they called me back to the pits on the next lap and told me that the fuel hadn't been delivered. Up until that point, the car had been running fine. It's fair to say that it's been a disappointing day."
"It has been another disappointing race. The first I knew there was a problem was when the cockpit started to fill with smoke and then the engine just stopped. Until then, the car had felt fine, and I had no problem staying ahead of Firman. The chassis balance, though, was definitely better on the first set of tyres than the second."
Paul Stoddart, Team Principal, European Minardi Cosworth:
"This was not the result that we had been hoping for at the team's 'home' Grand Prix. Sadly, a failure of the refuelling rig denied Justin a chance to finish the San Marino Grand Prix, and would have done likewise for Jos, had an electrical problem not intervened and prevented him from completing the race before his next scheduled stop. I had hoped we would get both cars home today, but despite a sterling effort from the drivers, it was not to be. Hopefully, we'll have a better race in Barcelona."
Chassis: (No 18) PS03/04
Best lap 1 min 26.354 secs
Chassis: (No 19) PS03/01
Best lap 1 min 26.835 secs