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2002 Season Preview 
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22 - 25 February News  
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25-Feb: Rubens Barrichello has indicated that he is satisfied with Ferrari's decisions to start the new season with last year's car as he believes that it remains very competitive. Speaking to the BBC he said "The new car is beautiful and we would have liked to have taken it to Australia, but we have not had time to fix everything on it. I've not even tested it yet. It could race in Malaysia or Brazil but we'll have to see how the old car goes in Australia and then decide.
We took this decision together and the team are very happy with it because the old car is still very competitive. It is faster than it was at Suzuka in the last race of 2001 because some improvements have been made on it."

Mark Webber believes the new Minardi will be completive and hopes to be able to come up with a few surprises. Webber also indicated that he'll continue his aggressive driving style and said "Normally I'm fairly aggressive in the way I go about things so hopefully it will work for me. Paul Stoddart got me in Formula One because he thinks I can do a reasonable job. But obviously I want to get the car to the finish, that's the main goal.
I want to help Minardi get the best results possible and as a small team we're going to work hard together to try and ruffle a few feathers during the season."

Webber arrived in Melbourne yesterday (Sunday) with 80 members of the Minardi team and one of the PS02's as well as 2 Minardi two-seaters on board one of Paul Stoddart's European Aviation jumbos. 

24-Feb: "Speed vs. Reliability" The Australian Grand Prix Preview is now available ... Race Preview

Australian 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 Melbourne Time / 12 AM GMT
1 PM Melbourne Time / 2 AM GMT
9 AM Melbourne Time / 10 PM GMT (Friday)
10:15 AM Melbourne Time / 11:15 AM GMT (Friday)
1 PM Melbourne Time / 2 AM GMT
9:30 AM Melbourne Time / 10:30 PM GMT (Friday)
2:00 PM Melbourne Time / 3:00 AM GMT
Go to the Australian GP Page

23-Feb: Nick Heidfeld is confident that the new Sauber C21 is a major improvement over last year's car and said "The new Sauber Petronas C21 is the best Formula One car I have ever driven. We had a great overall result in 2001, and from the test work we have done with the new car during the winter I am confident that we have taken a significant step further forward and will have a very good chance of defending our fourth position in the World Championship for Constructors in 2002."

Jacques Villeneuve has once again described the new car as 'a lot better' than it's predecessor and is looking forward to Melbourne and said "It's exciting to get back into the season. After all our testing the car feels a lot better and we have found that we can attack the corners and carry speed into them, whereas last year that wasn't possible. I like Melbourne a lot. The circuit is difficult to drive and quite technical with some interesting corners. It's also quite long at over 5kms."
Villeneuve also paid tribute to Volunteer Graham Beveridge who was killed in last year's event and said "Although Melbourne has some happy memories for me, I was deeply affected by the tragedy of last year. Throughout the weekend, our thoughts will remain with those involved."

Heinz Harald Frentzen who replaced Jos Verstappen at Arrows believes that the new car has potential but the main concern for him is reliability and said "Im very much looking forward to starting the new season with my new team. The whole package looks good and the team is full of very good, professional people. After only a few hundred kilometres of testing we still have a lot of sorting to do on the car but I am convinced it has potential. This is our first chance to see how competitive were going to be but the real test for everyone in Melbourne is reliability so I think if we can finish the race we will all be happy."

22-Feb: On the final day of testing at Valencia, David Coulthard broke the lap record by half a second and now holds the best lap times at the Valencia track for the last 3 years.
McLaren and Williams were present with only 3 drivers setting lap times. Alexander Wurz covered the most number of laps with 67 followed by David Coulthard with 58 and Marc Gene with 48.
Pre-season testing has now come to an end with the cars in the process of being shipped to Melbourne and the team personnel preparing for the long haul trip.

Click here for the test times from Valencia 

22-Feb: Jordan launched their 2002 contender at a huge DHL aircraft hanger in Brussels in a very innovative way where the car was delivered by a DHL cargo plane and Eddie Jordan signing off on the delivery.

Describing the car as 'better all round' compared to last year's car, team boss Eddie Jordan is aiming to improve on last year's result and said "(Our aim is) To make big improvements compared with last year. When you get a taste for winning, and it's been a while now, it's like a needle in the arm. Formula 1 is like a drug and I want us to be winning again. It will not be easy as there are a lot of manufacturers involved and everyone wants results. I am much happier now going to Australia: Taku is on a very strong level, Giancarlo has already been there, the car is better, the engine is better and everything is better all round."

Giancarlo Fisichella who returns to Jordan this year hopes to be able to win his first race this season but is realistic about his chances and said "Above all I want to do well and try and win my first race in F1 and get as many good results as possible. It won't be easy, because as usual there are a lot of very competitive teams. The car is reasonably good. We had some early problems with reliability and with the power of the engine but have made good steps in testing."  EJ12

Takuma Sato who debuts this season in Formula 1 feels good about the new car and said "I have a very good feeling about it. Everything is new, chassis, monocoque and engine, so we did have some initial problems in testing, which is typical with a new car. But now we have sorted them. The car's downforce level seems much higher than on EJ11."

Jordan have a new title sponsor in DHL who replace Benson and Hedges.

2002 DHL Jordan Honda Page

22-Feb: Minardi launched their 2002 contender, the PS02 at the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur today. The new car is significantly different from the PS01. The new car is powered by the new Asiatech AT02 replacing the 'customer' Ford engines used last year. This engine is more powerful and more compact than its predecessor. 
On the chassis side, the PS02 features a raised nose section, reshaped and extended engine cover and higher sidepods with different inlets. The car also features a new floor optimised to work the latest slim-line version of Minardi's unique, titanium-cased gearbox.

Minardi's boss Paul Stoddart expects the team to make it into the top 10 despite the small budget they operate on and said "We know the reality is we are competing against teams with five times our budget. But I can tell you from our hearts that the KL Minardi Asiatech team are going to give 110 percent this year to do everything we can to score a few points and to get the team into the top 10 constructors." PS02

Malaysian Alex Yoong and Australian Mark Webber will drive the new car this season.
The new car features Minardi's new title sponsor KL (The city of Kuala Lumpur) and Malaysia's Magnum Corporation

2002 KL Minardi Asiatech Page

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