Tempers fray over Monaco qualifying hold ups

Tempers fray over Monaco qualifying hold ups

While Juan Pablo Montoya took a fine pole position in Saturday's qualifying session for the Monaco Grand Prix others were not quite so happy. Sauber's Felipe Massa came in for criticism after apparently holding up both Renault drivers and a rather...

While Juan Pablo Montoya took a fine pole position in Saturday's qualifying session for the Monaco Grand Prix others were not quite so happy. Sauber's Felipe Massa came in for criticism after apparently holding up both Renault drivers and a rather annoyed Mark Webber, the Australian calling Massa 'brainless.'

Mark Webber.
Photo by Minardi Formula 1.
"We were shafted big time by Massa," he said. "We lost a bit of track time during qualifying with a hydraulic problem which meant we only managed three runs instead of four. I came out from my final run right at the end of the session when the track was at its quickest but also at its busiest. I was already two tenths of a second up on my first sector time when I came across Massa who was on his slow down lap."

"I know this is Monaco but what he did to me and other drivers was brainless. But I have to say a special thank you to the team for what they did today we might not have the biggest and best toys in Formula One but we are one of the best teams on the grid. We are really, really frustrated by today as it was our chance to make a difference but it was out of our control at the end of the day".

Felipe Massa.
Photo by Sauber Petronas.
Both Jarno Trulli and Jenson Button were less than happy with the young Brazilian: "My first run was my only clear lap, and after that I hit traffic each time," said Trulli. "Twice, Massa's Sauber didn't move out of the way, even though he was just cruising around. I'm very angry about it." Team-mate Button commented: "I made a mistake on my third run, so I couldn't improve then, but the problem at the end was Massa. He slowed me down, just as for lots of other people, apparently. Something needs to be done about it."

Massa was not the only one to come under fire: Rubens Barrichello was held up by the McLaren of David Coulthard and McLaren boss Ron Dennis quickly made apologies: "It was a mistake by a member of our team," Dennis explained. "That person apologized to Rubens and I apologized to Jean. It is important to maintain the tyre temperature on an 'out' lap if you want the tyres to be 'in' for the first three corners of your hot lap.

"It was critical for David not to back off and our dialogue was for him to increase his pace when we could see Rubens coming. Unfortunately, though, he didn't do so enough to get out of Rubens' way. But there is no question of our doing anything deliberate, people should know that is not our style."

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Juan Pablo Montoya
Teams Sauber , McLaren , Minardi