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Panasonic Toyota Racing

European Grand Prix - Free Practice Round-Up

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Today's Weather: Sunny and hot. Air 27-31°C, track 28-45°C Take Note: Timo Glock travelled across the Atlantic during the August break to take part in the Toyota Race of Legends at Laguna Seca. Up against a host of big names from the history of F1 including Johnny Herbert, Patrick Tambay, John Watson and Alan Jones, Timo stormed from 10th on the grid to beat Jean-Pierre Jarier and Eddie Cheever to the flag. He gave his $25,000 prize to the Children's Hospital in Frankfurt.

Timo Glock (Car 12, Chassis TF108-06)
Summary: Two strong practice sessions, ending with the 7th quickest time of the afternoon
P1 14th Best Lap Time: 1m 42.036s (+1.540s) Laps: 27
P2 7th Best Lap Time: 1m 39.967s (+0.490s) Laps: 32 "It's always enjoyable to come to a new venue and I'm impressed. It was pretty hot out there but the track is good fun and the layout is interesting. I like street circuits because I raced on so many of them during my time racing Champ Car in America but apart from the harbour and the buildings this doesn't really look like a street circuit because it has long straights. We had a good day. The first practice was a bit difficult and the track was very dusty but we expected that. The afternoon was much better and the car got more and more into the set-up window. I hope we can keep going in this direction because it has been a productive day."

Jarno Trulli (Car 11, Chassis TF108-05)
Summary: A busy day of practice, running without problems but struggling to find the best balance
P1 12th Best Lap Time: 1m 41.930s (+1.434s) Laps: 27
P2 15th Best Lap Time: 1m 40.877s (+1.400s) Laps: 32 "That was not a particularly good day for me. We need to adjust the car balance so we will have to look into it tonight. The track is good, though, and I like it. In karting we used to race on a lot of street circuits so learning it doesn't take long. But you need to find a compromise on set-up because there is a mix of slow corners and higher-speed sections with long straights. The most important thing is how much the surface will change during the weekend. The asphalt is quite smooth and while it was predictably slippery today, the grip should improve so it will be hard to get the set-up right."

Dieter Gass, Chief Engineer Race and Test "The most important thing when you go to a new track is to make it through your programme without any technical problems, which was the case today. On the first day at a new track we amend our usual plan. Today we carried out more long runs both at the start of P1 to learn the circuit and at the end of P2 to help judge the tyre behaviour because we have no reference here. Apart from that you aim to find the balance and the right downforce levels. There doesn't seem to be a lot of grip around and it didn't improve as massively as we would have expected. Still, we're quite happy with where we are with Timo but Jarno is struggling a bit with an inconsistent balance. So we will have to look into that and fix it for tomorrow."

Panasonic Toyota Racing, featuring... City Limits: What to expect in Valencia The European Grand Prix has featured on the F1 calendar since 1983 but this weekend's race has a fresh twist, with a completely new circuit around the streets of Valencia. The vibrant Spanish city is already well known to Panasonic Toyota Racing for its permanent track, often used for winter testing, but this stunning 5.419km street circuit combines a glamorous location and a technical challenge. With a glorious sandy beach, the dramatic America's Cup port and one of Europe's liveliest cities as a backdrop, Valencia is off to an impressive start.
Team Manager Richard Cregan says: "Valencia is a new street circuit in the middle of a city but the nice part is that it's in the harbour. It's great when you've got boats and F1 cars together like that. Monaco gives us that kind of magic feeling and now it's good to see Valencia coming in."
The Toyota team has already had a sneak preview of the track in racing conditions, with several technical and logistical personnel on hand to witness the Spanish Formula 3 Championship races there on July 26-27. Through studying events that weekend, and simulating the lay-out back at the team's headquarters in Cologne, Germany, Toyota is well prepared for this weekend's challenge.
For the full feature, in text or video format, please visit the broadcast room of www.toyota-f1-world.com.
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