Panasonic Toyota Racing began its preparations for the Canadian Grand Prix with a disrupted Friday of practice under sunny skies at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve. The teams have come to Montreal earlier in June than usual but air temperatures still topped 30° Celsius today. The track was its usual dusty self on the first day of running for the F1 cars so grip was typically short early on. Jarno Trulli and Ralf Schumacher both had solid mornings of work but Jarno’s afternoon was disrupted by a suspension problem early in the second session. The incident cost him over half the afternoon’s running and Ralf was also forced to stop while the team checked the cause of the damage. Shortly before the end both drivers went out again but the problem reoccurred on Jarno’s car. The disrupted Friday programme means Toyota will now have it all to do in Saturday’s practice session to prepare for qua lifying and the race.
Jarno Trulli (Car 12, Chassis TF107/06)
First Session 12th 25 laps completed Lap Time: 1m 18.925s (+1.166s)
Second Session 18th 16 laps completed Lap Time: 1m 18.895s (+2.345s)
"My day was cut short because we suffered a problem with my front right suspension early in the second session. We missed most of the afternoon and it happened again when we went out at the end. That is unfortunate and we will have to investigate the issue tonight. It also means I have had only a very short time to work on set-up changes. I’ve had problems with the rear of the car and I’ve struggled with high rear tyre wear so I have a lot of work ahead to catch up tomorrow. Still, after two races with nothing to show we will push as hard as we can to bounce back. I have a new helmet dedicated to my friend Danilo De Luca who has just won cycling’s Giro D’Italia so I will hope that helps bring me better fortunes."
Ralf Schumacher (Car 11, Chassis TF107/05)
First Session 8th
32 laps completed Lap Time: 1m 18.652s (+0.893s)
Second Session 19th 16 laps completed Lap Time: 1m 19.331s (+2.781s)
"That was a difficult afternoon for us due to the problems we have had. When Jarno had the first problem with his suspension we both stopped running for 45 minutes as a precaution. At the end of the session we went out but when it happened again we had to stop running. The car didn’t feel too bad for the first half of the session but we could not show our full potential. We’ve had a frustrating run lately but we will keep hoping for an improvement this weekend. I’m looking forward to a better day tomorrow."
Dieter Gass – Chief Engineer Race and Test
"Obviously that was not a good afternoon for us. We have an issue on the front suspension of Jarno’s car which is clearly related to this circuit. We have now identified the front upright as the problem area. We have no changes on the parts here and they have been tested and run throughout the season so far.
So we need to look into that and understand what has happened. As a precaution we kept Ralf in the garage. This problem has overshadowed all our running today and we are lacking a lot of the information that we were looking for. This morning went quite well but the circuit was obviously in more representative conditions after it rubbered in this afternoon. Now we need to sit down and change tomorrow’s run plan to see how we can make the best out of the weekend."