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March 20 - 25 News
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25-Mar: An easy win for Ferrari ? The Brazilian Grand Prix Preview is now available ... Race Preview
Brazilian Formula 1 Grand Prix Schedule:
their excellent form at the Malaysian GP with Ralf Schumacher qualifying
3rd and Juan Pablo Montoya 6th, the BMW Williams F1 team is looking
forward to the Brazilian GP and hoping to collect more points. Frank
Williams said "I am really looking forward to this race to be
competitive once again. A good long straight presents very good passing
opportunities beyond the pits. I�ve always thought Interlagos provided a
fine track for exciting racing. Let�s hope we�re part of the action."
Michael Schumacher and Luca Badoer have dominated the 4 day
Barcelona test setting the fastest times on each of the 4 days and
considerably faster than any of the other teams. Michael Schumacher was in
a confident mood following the test and said "I think we will be
competitive in Brazil, just as we were in Melbourne and Sepang. I can't
see any reason why we shouldn't be."
Click here for the timed results
23-Mar: Following the launch of the new Toyota Formula 1 car, the team presented the car on track to the media. Toyota first demonstrated their heritage in Motorsport by showing their World Rally car as well as their Le Mans GT followed by the new F1 car. Mika Salo drove the car for 6 laps and admitted afterwards that he was nervous and said "I had driven the car up and done the back straight twice two days ago, so this is the first time I drove it around a corner and I am glad it turned. It needs a bit of adjusting to the handling and in other areas, and we will start this tomorrow, but the main thing was that it started. I am really relieved. Before this I was a bit nervous as Andre warned me not to crash, but after a couple of laps I forgot about that. I had no idea what would happen though so I was nervous."
Toyota Motorsport President Ove Andersson has confirmed that Allan McNish will partner Mika Salo next year as their second driver. He said "McNish will race with us unless something really bad happens. We have worked with Allan during our Le Mans programme and found him technically excellent and a pleasant person to work with."
Toyota have launched their first ever Formula 1 test car at the Paul
Ricard track in France today as the team prepares for their Formula 1
debut in 2002.
Jaguar's boss Bobby Rahal has denied the rumours claiming the Jaguar
have given their rookie driver Luciano Burti an ultimatum which is to
perform in Brazil or be replaced. Rahal said "I don�t know where
these stories come from. As I�ve said many times before, Pedro is our
development driver, with a contract to race next year. Eddie and Luciano
are our race drivers and will remain so for the rest of the year, and
that�s the end of the story."
Last year CART star Dario Franchitti had a test with Jaguar Racing (story) but later indicated his regret to have conducted such a test due to internal team problems (story). Bobby Rahal has recently stated that Franchitti's time is running out and if he is to switch to Formula 1 it has to be this year. Franchitti has now confirmed his desire to move to Formula 1 next year despite the failed attempt last year and said "I've always said, there's no secret of the fact that I'd like to do Formula One. I'm out of contract at the end of this year, if it happens so be it. We'll see but right now I'm happy where I am, I'm enjoying my racing, I'm enjoying driving the car. To think about the future and ifs and buts is a waste of energy."
Michael Schumacher was the fastest
man on the track today setting a time that was 0.7 seconds faster than
anyone else. Olivier Panis in the BAR was second as he continues to set
impressive times in testing although that has yet to show in his
qualifying. Heinz Harald Frentzen was third slightly behind Panis.
Click here for the timed results
Michael Schumacher has indicated that their choice of intermediate
tyres and their rivals choice of wet tyres made for the huge gap in
performance between them and said "In the warm-up
we found out that the intermediate tyres were much quicker than the rain
ones. On my first flying lap I did a time of 1.52, while Coulthard on rain
tyres did a 1.57. With the intermediates, you only needed someone in front
to lay out the racing line and you could easily drive it. It was clear
that while some parts of the track were very wet, others were almost dry.
In these conditions, rain tyres can go off very quickly, while they were
almost ideal for intermediates. So, if you have the best car in the field
and your rivals help you out by getting their tyre choice wrong, you end
up with the big gap we saw on Sunday."
Giancarlo Fisichella immediately apologised
for his mistake on the formation lap at the Malaysian GP when he missed
his starting position and ended up stranded in the middle of the grid
forcing an aborted start that relegated him to the back of the grid.
Fisichella said "I immediately admitted to the mistake, I apologised
to the whole team on the radio. I was simply concentrating too hard on
making sure that the car was set up right and I was only watching the car
Luca Badoer was again the fastest man on the Barcelona track today
ahead of Heinz Harald Frentzen and Alexander Wurz.
Click here for the timed results
21-Mar: "Ferrari dominates" is the title of the 6th issue from the Diagnosis and Prognosis Series for the 2001 season. In this issue, the Heretic looks at the aftermath of the Malaysian Grand Prix - Issue 6
21-Mar: Eddie Irvine has expressed his surprise at Barrichello's comments that he was unhappy with Michael's overtaking manoeuvre at the Malaysian GP and said "You can only beat Michael when he�s not there, or when he lets you win. To be honest, I�m amazed that Barrichello still doesn�t understand this after one year with Ferrari. When I was with Ferrari in 1999, I won in Australia because Michael retired, at Zeltweg and Hockenheim because his leg was in plaster and finally in Malaysia because he let me win. I doubt very much that I could have won anything in 1999 if Schumacher had been there fighting for the title. When Barrichello won at Hockenheim last year, the German went off at the first corner. That just goes to prove that when he�s in the race, no team-mate can beat him!"
In preparation for their Formula 1 debut in
2002, the Toyota Motorsport Group (TMG) are set to unveil their
Formula 1 car on Friday the 23rd of March at the Paul Ricard circuit near
Marseille in France. The circuit will be the team's home circuit but have
also been granted special permission by the FIA to test at all the
European circuits except Monaco as well as Interlagos, Suzuka and Sepang
20-Mar: On the first day of testing at Barcelona, Luca Badoer (Ferrari test driver) sets the fastest time just under 0.6 seconds faster than Alexander Wurz (McLaren test driver).
5 teams were present and 5 drivers set lap
times today. All the drivers present today were test drivers. Marc Gene
covered the most number of laps with 89 followed by Johnny Herbert with 78
and Alexander Wurz with 74. Luca Badoer covered the least number of laps
Click here for the timed results
Most of the 11 Formula 1 teams including Ferrari will start testing at Barcelona from
today for a 4 day test session. This will be the last time the Formula 1
cars will test at Barcelona before the Spanish GP on the 29th of April.
This is due to the new regulations that ban testing on a circuit one month
prior to a grand prix. The same applies to Magny Cours, Silverstone and
20-Mar: "Should Rubens Barrichello be penalised ?" Topic of the week - Have Your Say
20-Mar: Following the Malaysian Grand Prix, McLaren's boss Ron Dennis has indicated that while the intermediate tyres were superior to the wet tyres during the race, the team decided to use wet tyres to minimise the risk to the drivers and said "The decision to put both drivers on wet tyres was the only responsible option when faced with the severity of the downpour, it turned out to be the wrong decision but it was the only decision to take at the time. You can�t play around with drivers' lives. David told us he was aquaplaning at 60mph behind the safety car. When the safety car finally pulled in, conditions had significantly improved, resulting in a performance advantage being passed to our main competitors who had fitted intermediate tyres."
Ferrari's Technical Director Ross Brawn hit back at those comments and indicated that they have tested intermediates at Fiorano and they were comfortable with them and said "We tried these tyres at Fiorano last week, and we knew that the intermediate was a very, very good tyre. Ron made a comment about Ferrari being irresponsible fitting those tyres. We had the information that they were very good tyres even in fairly deep water. So I think that�s a bit of an unfortunate comment for him to make without the facts or information that was needed. We knew there were dry parts of the track and we knew there were wet parts of the track and we knew the tyres were very good in the morning as well. That was what we ran this morning. We knew it was very good and we knew it would go into the dry.�
Heinz Harald Frentzen has revealed
that not only was he very lucky to start the race but he was also lucky
finishing it as his car had no fuel on board. Frentzen said "It
started in the parade lap when software gremlins meant the system switched
to an emergency program which limited the engine automatically to 5.000
rpm. In my mind, I was starting to think about my flight back to Europe.
On my way to the pits, I heard of the interruption of the starting
procedure in the very last moment so I stayed on the track � good luck.
It was also very lucky that the software problem could be solved before