Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda made a positive start to Round 5 of the FIA World Championship today as free practice got underway for Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix at Barcelona's Circuit de Catalunya. All three drivers were in the top 8 in this morning's...
Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda made a positive start to Round 5 of the FIA World Championship today as free practice got underway for Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix at Barcelona's Circuit de Catalunya. All three drivers were in the top 8 in this morning's first timed session, with Anthony Davidson conducting most of the running (26 laps) whilst the track conditions improved sufficiently for race drivers Jenson Button and Takuma Sato to benefit.
This afternoon, Takuma suffered a small mechanical problem, which lost him the last 20 minutes of running and the chance to maintain his second-fastest time. Jenson and Anthony ended the session 1st and 2nd respectively.
"Today has gone quite well and I'm pleased to be at the top of the timesheets at the end of the day. The grip has been quite low but I'm happy with the balance of the car. There will be more to come as the track gets better and generally it looks like this is going to be another positive weekend for us."
"It's very disappointing to end the day early with a mechanical problem. I have completed only four timed laps from a total of 10 laps all day and this means we haven't completed all the set-up and tyre work that prepares us for tomorrow's qualifying. It's a great shame because once again the car has been strong and feeling positive so far. The track conditions took a while to improve because it was very dusty this morning."
"We made a good start to the second session on older tyres, and I was running 2nd fastest when I came in with my clutch-related problem. I have to hope that I can have two very productive sessions tomorrow morning in readiness for qualifying so we have some work to do this evening to ensure that happens."
"Today has gone really well for me and for the team. We ended the second session first and second fastest - second being my best position in Friday practice so far this season, so I'm happy with that. We're pretty confident on tyre choice for the race now. The car feels really good. I did a longer run on both tyre options and the car felt nice and stable and good to drive. It was consistent throughout and not just good on one lap so, as we thought, we should have a good car here this weekend."
David Richards, Team Principal:
"After all the winter testing here in Barcelona and some very impressive times, we were obviously optimistic about the performance we could expect this weekend and it appears that our optimism was well-founded. Jenson's time is still a second slower than his best time during the winter so hopefully there's more to come from the car tomorrow. I'm sure Taku is disappointed at having to sit out most of the second session but I'm very confident that he'll be on the pace for qualifying. Anthony, as usual, did a superb job in his testing role today."
Geoffrey Willis, Technical Director:
"A very successful day for the team, if a little frustrating for Takuma who had his running curtailed by a problem which affected the operation of the clutch early in the second session. Given our experience of testing here, the race drivers' running was intentionally restricted and Anthony did an excellent job and most of the work on the tyre programme. The car has been consistently quick both on one lap and on a run. Without the problem I'm sure Takuma would have joined Jenson and Anthony at the top of the timesheets today."
Shuhei Nakamoto, Engineering Director, Honda Racing Development:
"Another good solid day for us. Anthony and Jenson's times are good and we have every reason to be confident of continuing our run of podiums. I am sure that Takuma will not suffer too much from his problem as we do so much running at Barcelona and we know the car and engine settings very well for this track."
Chassis: BAR Honda 006-5
Practice session 1: 5th, 1:17.060
Practice session 2: 1st, 1:15.935
Chassis: BAR Honda 006-3
Practice session 1: 8th, 1:17.481
Practice session 2: 18th, 1:19.970
Chassis: BAR Honda 006-1
Practice session 1: 3rd, 1:16.616
Practice session 2: 2nd, 1:16.188