West McLaren Mercedes driver Mika Hakkinen will start tomorrow's SAP United States Grand Prix from the front row after setting the second fastest time of 1:11.945. David Coulthard qualified seventh with a time of 1:12.500. Mika Hakkinen 'I'm ...
West McLaren Mercedes driver Mika Hakkinen will start tomorrow's SAP United States Grand Prix from the front row after setting the second fastest time of 1:11.945. David Coulthard qualified seventh with a time of 1:12.500.
'I'm really pleased to have been able to fight for pole position. It was so close and I enjoyed it. To be on the front row is great, and I will go flat out tomorrow. We made a few modifications to the car during qualifying but nothing major as the balance just seemed to be there. I was behind David at some point to see if I could get a tow, but it didn't work as you have to be able to be extremely close. I aborted my second run because I knew the time would not be quick enough. I'm really looking forward to the race, which I think will be exciting. The circuit is so wide and there are plenty of opportunities for overtaking, and I want to put on a great show for all the fans.'
'We have been struggling since this morning to find a decent balance as we couldn't get rid of the oversteer. All our set-up changes didn't have the desired effect. In those circumstances I think the best which I could have done today was fifth. However the race is tomorrow, and we have shown in the past that you can achieve a good result from lesser grid positions.'
'It was nice to see the enthusiasm of the Indianapolis crowd for what turned out to be an exciting qualifying session. Mika did a great job, but David struggled with his car's set-up. Our race performance has often proved better than our qualifying this year, so we will see what happens tomorrow.'
'An exciting qualifying with Mika putting in a very good performance. David and his team have not sorted out their set-up problem yet, but the basis for the race is OK.'
Spare (Coulthard): MP4/16-05