Barcelona, May 28, 1999 - The first day of practice for Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix provided mixed fortunes for the British American Racing team today. Jacques Villeneuve had a trouble-free morning working on race set-ups, whereas team-mate Mika...
Barcelona, May 28, 1999 - The first day of practice for Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix provided mixed fortunes for the British American Racing team today. Jacques Villeneuve had a trouble-free morning working on race set-ups, whereas team-mate Mika Salo (standing in for regular driver Ricardo Zonta) was sidelined for the morning when his Supertec FB01 developed an oil pressure problem early on in the session, but was able to participate in the afternoon session with a new engine.
At day's end, Villeneuve was ninth overall with a best time of 1 minute, 24.458 seconds around the 4.278 km Catalunya circuit, and Salo was 18th in 1:25.990.
Eddie Irvine topped the first day's times for Ferrari with a time of 1:23.577 turned in during the morning sesssion, with Heinz-Harald Frentzen (Jordan), and Michael Schumacher (Ferrari), completing the top three with times of 1:23.780 and 1:23.895, respectively.
Jacques Villeneuve - 1:24.458 - 9th "I'm very happy with the work we did today. We worked on general set-ups, were able to complete our programme, and I managed to set some reasonable times, so I'm confident that we'll have a good qualifying on Saturday."
Mika Salo - 1:25.990 - 18th "It was rather a disappointing morning for me as I was not able to complete a timed lap before I had the engine problem, but my mechanics did an absolutely fantastic job to change it in an hour and a quarter, so I was able to do some runs in the afternoon session. I only completed 11 laps altogether but fortunately we were testing at Catalunya last week and we were able to get a lot of useful data. Also the car was handling really well then, but of course the circuit is never the same two days in a row, so I shall have some work to do Saturday morning to get in shape for a good grid position. I am confident that it won't be a problem."
Craig Pollock, Managing Director, British American Racing "A good session overall. Had it not been for Mika's engine problem we could have been in a better position. However, I was pleased to see how well the team worked together, and we are gaining in performance all the time."
Robert Synge, Team Manager, British American Racing "On the whole not a bad day's work for us. Jacques completed his programme with no problems and his times show that we are about where we expected to be at this stage. Mika was unlucky to miss the morning session, but so far, so good, sums up things for us, I think."