Platzhalter Motorsport

Panasonic Toyota Racing

Hungarian Grand Prix - Preview


Panasonic Toyota Racing turns its focus eastwards this weekend for the Hungarian Grand Prix, the last race before Formula 1's traditional summer break. Held at the twisty Hungaroring in Budapest since 1986, the Hungarian Grand Prix presents a return to the kind of high-downforce aerodynamic package used at Monaco. With 4.381km made up of 14 mostly tight turns, the Hungaroring has one of the slowest laps on the calendar at an average speed of around 195km/h - 50km/h slower than Monza. This requires a specific aerodynamic package for Hungary which maximises downforce at the cost of drag on the track's short straights. Therefore Jarno Trulli and Timo Glock will have high-downforce front and rear wings, as well as other aerodynamic adjustments, available this weekend. Following a difficult German Grand Prix, which saw the team's fine run of results come to an end, a return to the points in Hungary is the clear target.

Jarno Trulli (Car 11): "I enjoy racing at the Hungaroring because it is a challenging circuit which is good fun to drive. It's a narrow track with a lot of corners in quite a short lap so it's not easy to overtake. That means qualifying will be particularly important here. Usually we expect a dusty track because it isn't used regularly and this is quite a challenge for a driver because if you run off line you lose a lot of time, so you really have to concentrate to avoid making even the smallest mistake. Normally this race is one of the hottest of the year so you really need to be in good condition to stay sharp throughout the race, although I have done my training so it won't be a problem for me. I have usually been competitive in Hungary, even if I have been a bit unlucky with results, so I am optimistic for the weekend and I expect to score points again. We showed in qualifying at Hockenheim that we can fight close to the front so our aim is to repeat that pace and get back in the points."

Timo Glock (Car 12): "After my incident at Hockenheim I am fine and raring to go. I have had the chance to relax a little at home so I am definitely ready for this weekend. Also, I had a day in the car at Jerez preparing for the Hungarian Grand Prix and that went well. I enjoy visiting Budapest. I went there on holiday a few years ago and it was a fun place and also I have had some exciting races there, particularly in 2006. Obviously it's a twisty circuit and we will have a different aero package for this race. I know the guys at the factory are pushing extremely hard so I am sure we will be competitive again. Qualifying will be really important this weekend because overtaking is very difficult in a Formula 1 car. I have had some fun races in GP2 in Hungary and overtaken a lot of cars but it's completely different in Formula 1. Even though the result wasn't what I wanted in Hockenheim, I was competitive in the race and fighting to finish in the top six so I am optimistic again for this weekend."

Pascal Vasselon - Senior General Manager Chassis: "In Hungary we have an aerodynamic efficiency requirement which is different from our baseline car and much closer to Monaco, so we will run a high-downforce specification. The lay-out of the track also requires attention in terms of cooling, because the average speed is lower and there is quite a lot of braking, so we always have to be careful with cooling the brakes and engine. However, the main challenge in Budapest is tyre related; lateral severity is quite high but the track is quite low grip. You have to make sure you can get adequate heat into the tyres without destroying them very quickly and this is not easy. We have made further developments on our high downforce package since Monaco and we are pretty happy with the results and looking forward to this race. We were in the top six there last year so we are optimistic. It's going to be a tough battle between now and the end of the year. It's tight with Red Bull, and Renault is there too after the result in Germany, but it's our objective to stay fourth in the Constructors' Championship. We are ready for the challenge."