US GP Friday practice quotes


RALF SCHUMACHER (#5 BMW WilliamsF1 Team/Michelin):
"It was nearly the same as the first day last year. There was no grip in the infield. We need to get a lot more rubber there. The temperature is not that good for our tires, but there's more to come tomorrow. Generally, we are very competitive with no problems on the technical side. We tried different things, so we shouldn't look too closely at today's rankings. There are changes to come tomorrow. We found which tire compound to take. The rest of the work with settings has to be done tomorrow."

About the U.S. flag on the car: "It's the least we can do to express our feelings for the victims, and the people of the United States."

JUAN PABLO MONTOYA (#6 BMW WilliamsF1 Team/Michelin):
"It's been quite a difficult day for us. We're struggling a bit with the balance of the car, but it's fun to be here. We'll work on it, and I think we can make it much better. I think there are too many slow corners to the track, but it's about what I thought it would be."

GIANCARLO FISICHELLA (#7 Mild Seven Benetton Renault Sport/Michelin):
"During this morning's session the setup was good, and the car felt very balanced, which made me feel encouraged for the afternoon. In the first lap of the second session we made some alterations to the car, which improved the setup even further. Unfortunately, I lost control of the car in the sixth corner and went on to the gravel, so that was the end of today's free practice, I'm afraid. I am, however, optimistic for tomorrow's qualifying after having been in the car for only 21 laps."

JENSON BUTTON (#8 Mild Seven Benetton Renault Sport/Michelin):
"Yes, a good day. We got through all the stuff we wanted to test, and that's the main thing for the race setup. Tomorrow, we'll drain the fuel out and go for qualifying times."

OLIVIER PANIS (#9 BAR Honda/Bridgestone):
"We worked to prepare for the race on Sunday. We used some fuel and tested some different setups. For me, it's the first time here on the circuit, but it's quite good, to be honest. We need to look forward to tomorrow."

About his first time at Indianapolis: "I think it is quite positive for Formula One because Indianapolis, everybody knows the name in the world. It is a very special city for motor racing, and I'm very pleased to drive here."

JACQUES VILLENEUVE (#10 BAR Honda/Bridgestone):
"Not very good. We had a lot of problems with the car in the first session, and then we had some problems that didn't let us run for the first half of the second session. So, not much work done today and quite slow."

About qualifying Saturday: "It will definitely be better than it was today, but by how much, I don't know."

JEAN ALESI (#11 Jordan Honda/Bridgestone):
"It was typical day, to find the correct balance. The first hour we had some problems with the electrical systems. That is it. Now we need to work a little bit with everyone to understand which direction to go."

JARNO TRULLI (#12 Jordan Honda/Bridgestone):
"It was a routine day, as usual. It was tough getting the setup all day, especially looking for the race conditions. We will see tomorrow. In the morning, I had some problems with the tires, which caused me a couple of spins. I changed the tires and everything was much better in the afternoon. In the beginning, the track was very slippery."

PEDRO DE LA ROSA (#19 Jaguar Racing/Michelin):
"We found a very slippery track today. It was better and better through the run from the track because there was more rubber. We did a fair amount of setup work. We did the tire compare like we normally do on Friday. We seem to have an understeering problem. The front tires are not getting the temperature we need. We need a little more grip on the infield, but then we tried for more downforce, and we lost too much time on the straights. So it is just a compromise."

FERNANDO ALONSO (#21 European Minardi F1/Michelin):
"It's a good track. It's different compared to the European tracks because there is a very long straight and then a very slow part. Everything is good for the spectators. For me, today was a good day without problems. We did a good job today to prepare tomorrow for qualifying."

ALEX YOONG (#20 European Minardi F1/Michelin):
"It was good. The track is very tight. There are two quick corners, but they are easy flat. You don't really think about them as corners, it is just one long straight. It's very tight and tricky. It's quite tricky to get a good time out of the new tires. I was doing good times with the old tires, but when I got on the new tires I soon found it was very easy to make mistakes. I think you have to be very smooth to get a really good time around here. It is very greasy today, so it just makes it a little bit tricky. I have never really been to America. It is special being here, especially being in this place. You just look at this track, and you think, 'Wow, it's nice being here.'"

NICK HEIDFELD (#16 Red Bull Sauber Petronas/Bridgestone):
"I'm quite happy with that. Sixth twice is a good result. It's difficult to judge how we'll be tomorrow, but a top 10 should be possible. We have no problem at the moment. The atmosphere is actually quite good."

HEINZ-HARALD FRENTZEN (#22 Prost Acer/Michelin):
"Everything was running smoothly until we had a problem with the gearbox. We had a problem on the rear gearbox suspension mounting. Nothing serious, but we decided to stop and not take any risk in continuing the session. That's why we stopped. We still had some work on the list, which we couldn't finish. So, we'll have some work left over for tomorrow morning's practice session."

About the special circuit: "It is a very special circuit -- a long straight here, the banking. It's really enjoyable. We are looking forward to the race here to have some tow racing, because that's different in Formula One for us."

MICHAEL SCHUMACHER (#1 Scuderia Ferrari/Bridgestone):
"It was a pretty normal Friday, today. We just did our usual work of adapting the car to the circuit. There were no particular problems. Aside from that, I am happy to be racing here in the U.S.A., and I hope that this weekend's grand prix will entertain the crowd and bring some happiness and relief after the terrible events of a fortnight ago."

ENRIQUE BERNOLDI (#15 Orange Arrows Asiatech/Bridgestone):
"This is my first time at Indianapolis, so it was good to do a lot of laps today to learn the circuit. I like the track, as it has a very good mixture of corners. The infield section is a little slow, but the fast parts are a lot of fun. We went the wrong way on setup this morning, which wasted a bit of time, but we're back on track. We got through our program, so I'm pretty happy at the end of day one."

MIKA HAKKINEN (#3 West McLaren Mercedes/Bridgestone):
"Today was a great day. We did good with the car. It responded well to the changes. The balance is really good. The day started a little bit negative because we had a technical problem. We weren't able to run much the first hour, so we ran the whole second hour. It was very, very difficult in particular for the mechanics. They changed engines in 35 minutes. Finding the right racing line was quite easy, but finding the right balance, the right setup for the car was quite complicated. Like I said, the mechanics and engineers did very professional work."

About motivation for last two races: "I don't know what it. I feel confident. I'm a happy person. I get along extremely well with the team and every person on the team. That is one of the reasons. What is my motivation? I want to win. I love racing these cars. That is it."

About circuit: "I like it a lot. I think last year was very good actually."

TOMAS ENGE (#23 Prost Acer/Michelin):
About spin during afternoon practice session: "Out of Turn 8, I just had more oversteer than usual, and the traction control wasn't working as I would like to, so I spun. This was a problem, so I just spun back again on the road, and at that time I stalled the engine. That was the main problem why I couldn't continue. Nothing, nothing special you know. Just a simple spin, but I couldn't go anymore because I stalled the engine."

About practice session prior to spin: "It was quite good. We improved time. We improved positions. We are quite competitive as I expected in the beginning of the day. I improved myself. I improved the time, car as well. So let's just work on tomorrow's morning pre-practice before qualifying, and try to qualify as good as possible. I think we can be very strong here. As I expected the second session was much, much better for grip for everybody. Everybody improved their times, and you can just feel that the grip out there is much, much better. Generally, I'm happy."

DAVID COULTHARD (#4 West McLaren Mercedes/Bridgestone):
"Well it's always difficult to tell, I don't want to sound like a broken record, but it's a fact we don't know where our competitors are running their fuel level. We know where we are. We're reasonably happy with the way the car was going given the fuel level we're running. The big thing, of course, is qualifying, and the big thing this year is we've seen Williams take a big step forward. And we've seen Ferrari be very strong all season in qualifying. Tomorrow we'll find out if we're more connected than at Monza."

How much have you been able to do to get ready for this race?: "It's a reasonably straightforward circuit. There's no real high-speed corners, you know, with the banking, and you don't have to set up the car for that. The rest of the corners are low speed, so we're just trying to achieve a balance to the car. Quite a lot of oversteer at the moment, but I trust we can overcome that."

KIMI RAIKKONEN (#17 Red Bull Sauber Petronas/Bridgestone):
(About performance in practice: "I don't know because we only had one set of new tires. We weren't really pushing for the time. It was just for the race, to get the race setup. I don't really have much to say. We're happy. I look forward to the race."

JOS VERSTAPPEN (#14 Orange Arrows Asiatech/Bridgestone):
"The first session went well for me today as we managed to get a lot of work done. The track was very slippery to start with, but it is a lot better now. Unfortunately, my car had an electrical problem at the start of the second session, which cost us a lot of time. We managed to get out again just before the end, but we lost the engine on my first flying lap. We still have to do our tire comparisons and a bit more setup work, but there is still time tomorrow. I'm enjoying being back at Indianapolis, as I like the place a lot, and the circuit is a good challenge."


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Series Formula 1
Teams Ferrari , Mercedes , Sauber , McLaren , Williams , Benetton , Minardi , Jaguar Racing , Jordan