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30-Aug: After failing to take part in the Friday practice session, the Arrows team announced that due to their inability to finalise the deal before end of business on Friday, the team decided not to participate in the event. The statement read "Further to the statement made on Wednesday (28 August 2002), Arrows Grand Prix International confirms that the legal teams are still working through the detailed documentation that supports the sale of Arrows.

Professional advisors on all sides have been working extremely hard all week to finalise the deal in time for this weekend. Unfortunately, due to the sheer amount of paperwork involved, the process cannot be completed by close of business today.

Consequently the team has been advised to do nothing that could jeopardise the successful completion of the transaction so will not race in Sunday's Belgian Grand Prix."

30-Aug: At the Friday press conference for the Belgian Grand Prix, Gerhard Berger gave his views on Ferrari's dominance and disagreed with Renualt's Patrick Faure who called for the rules to revised and said "We have always seen in Formula One cycles where you had cars very dominant. Remember back in '88 the McLaren, remember back to Williams at the time, and if somebody is doing a good job, we shouldn't look to change the regulations, we should look that we do our job better. They are very very strong, they have good resources, they have good budgets and they are a very strong group of people, but the time is going to change again and I think there's no reason why we shouldn't be able to close up. It may take a bit of time, but it would be completely wrong to sort this problem out with changing the regulations."
Berger also clarified the situation regarding his contract with BMW and said "Somebody asked me what are you going to do afterwards (beyond 2003) and I say in the winter it's time to think about it but not before. Now we are in the middle of the season so let's finish the season and then in the winter I will have to think a little bit about it but there's nothing special behind it. Let's see what's going to come."
As for the possible loss of the Belgian GP due to anti-tobacco legislation, Berger said "I think everybody agrees with me, it would be a real pity to lose this track. This is one of the old traditional high-speed circuits where we all look forward to come, especially the drivers. But we cannot have just this side of the view. I think there is more to a Grand Prix weekend, and at the end of the day Bernie and Max have to see what is right for the business, where is the right place to go, where is not the right place to go. But from a driver's point of view we miss circuits like this and we will be missing more circuits like this."

Norbert Haug agreed with Gerhard regarding Ferrari's dominance and said "I think you certainly cannot blame Ferrari for being faster and for being more successful this season. As Gerhard pointed out, both the other way around, there was a period when Williams was dominant and also a period when McLaren Mercedes was dominant and I'm 100 per cent convinced that, because this is something that you can look up in the history books, it's certainly not going to last forever, the dominance of Ferrari. I think we make great steps, I think Williams-BMW is doing good, we have to accept that we only work the first year with Michelin, but I think we put some highlights like Monaco and Magny-Cours. What we need is 17 highlights in the year, not only two."
Haug was pleased for Eddie Jordan on his deal with Ford and said "I think it's great. It's great for Eddie, it's great for Formula One, if there is a full commitment behind, but I'm sure Eddie can point out that in a much better way, but I think it's great to have Ford back."

Eddie Jordan explained why there wasn't a formal announcement regarding the Ford engine deal and said "I thought most of the media have confirmed it, but what actually happened was a bit different. In Hungary, relatively late on Saturday afternoon, a signed, confirmed contract arrived and in view of the fact that there was nobody there either from Cosworth or Ford themselves to have a proper, open press release and conference, I was told, particularly in light of, we of course went to Honda for me to make sure that I had the ability to be able to go, and I will come back to Honda in a second, so as a result of that and their press release that went out, I did, with the permission of the people at Ford to make an announcement that Jordan and Ford would be together for the next three years using Cosworth engines.
I think Honda need, in this particular case, a huge vote of thanks because what they did was a very sporting situation and the circumstances may have helped them in their longer term future, but I did have a contract which they recognised and they absolutely totally sportingly allowed me, which was important for Jordan, to have a much longer contract with Ford and with Cosworth to be put in place and for that, I personally want it on record that I'm thanking them "
Jordan hopes that them and Jaguar can work well together with Cosworth and said "I hope so. There was so much media speculation that ourselves and BAR were at loggerheads, which was absolute nonsense, it was never the case. Craig and more recently Dave Richards would be absolutely able to confirm that. We worked harmoniously together. I think now you can see the development in the Honda engine is getting there and I'd like to think that Jordan and BAR worked tirelessly to get this together, and I have no reason, whatsoever, to believe that Jaguar and Jordan can't work in harmony in this case. It's a perfectly natural thing, It would be crazy for both of us if we gave up the opportunity of driving both of us further up the grid. That's the natural thing to do."
Eddie also pointed out that his current driver line-up will remain the same for next year and said "The drivers I have next year have already been signed on a long-term contract and they are the two drivers we have at the moment."

Hisao Suganuma talked about the relationship between Bridgestone and Ferrari and said "We are working very closely and Ferrari provides a lot of chances to try different kinds of tyres so therefore we have many opportunities to vary our prototype tyres and therefore we can find the best spec for respective races, so that is the best point of working with Ferrari."
As for the other teams, Suganuma said "We have a very good relationship with the other teams and then also we have a chance to variate our prototype tyres but Ferrari provides most of the chances to try our tyres, but that is the best point with Ferrari. But we also respect the other teams' results as well so we can confirm Ferrari's results with the other teams; we compare and that makes a more accurate result for us."
Regarding the tyre requirements for Spa, he said "It's basically stability, that is the first, because of a couple of fast corners so to run in those corners would be the key to being competitive in this circuit, so I believe stability is the first point, then consistency throughout the race distance."
And any particular consideration to Eau Rouge "Yes, we think about the Eau Rouge requirement, which, as I said, is stability which is the greatest issue, so therefore we provide two specs for this circuit; one of the specs will be suitable through that corner."

Pierre Dupasquier doesn't believe that Michelin are too aggressive on one track but too conservative on another and said "Not that much. Look at Magny-Cours. I think we were pretty much competitive and there was nothing to do about it. Hockenheim was a bit different, but again we didn't think we could pick up one second somewhere just with the tyres being less conservative and the stability was enough. And talking about Hungary, we have been very consistent and conservative during the race also. At least one of our tyres was just appropriate.
It depends on the circumstances. Normally we try to provide a tyre which will be difficult to use but as fast as possible, and a tyre that will be more safe and can be used in any circumstances, even circumstances that we don't necessarily think about before. In fact here at Spa, you can have 12 degrees on the ground or you can have 45 on the ground. We are obliged to cover a wide range so we try to have two tyres. The two tyres, option and prime, are very close to each other."

30-Aug: What the teams and drivers said following Friday practice at Spa-Francorchamps ... Report

30-Aug: Belgian GP 2nd Friday Practice Session: Kimi Raikkonen sets the fastest time of the session ahead of David Coulthard and Michael Schumacher. Rubens Barrichello, Ralf Schumacher and Jenson Button make the top 6 ... Timed Results ... Report ...  Notes

30-Aug: Belgian GP 1st Friday Practice Session: Rubens Barrichello sets the fastest time of the session ahead of Michael Schumacher and David Coulthard. Jarno Trulli, Kimi Raikkonen and Eddie Irvine make the top 6 ... Timed Results ... Report ... Notes

Belgian Formula 1 Grand Prix Schedule:

Session Time (Local / GMT) - Current local time
Friday Practice Session 1
Friday Practice Session 2
Saturday Practice Session 1
Saturday Practice Session 2
Qualifying Session
Warm-up Session
11 AM Spa Time / 9 AM GMT
1 PM Spa Time / 11 AM GMT
9:00 AM Spa Time / 7:00 AM GMT 
10:15 AM Spa Time / 8:15 AM GMT
1:00 PM
Spa Time / 11:00 AM GMT
9:30 AM Spa Time / 7:30 AM GMT
2:00 PM
Spa Time / 12 PM GMT
Go to the Belgian GP Page

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