Platzhalter Motorsport

Panasonic Toyota Racing

French Grand Prix - Qualifying Round-Up

Panasonic Toyota Racing Jarno Trulli will start tomorrow's French Grand Prix from the front row after he produced a stunning lap during today's qualifying session. Jarno's time was good enough for 2nd place on a tight grid, his fifth front row slot of the year. Team-mate Ralf Schumacher will line up in 11th place tomorrow. The German was hampered by having to go out first following his practice accident in Indianapolis but he also did well to gain places on the starting grid. Toyota will now head into Sunday's race aiming to make the most of today's results and to get both cars into the points. Fresh from his efforts as Friday test driver here yesterday, Olivier Panis was presented with the car in which he made his final racing appearance for Toyota last year. Olivier raced the TF104/09B at Suzuka last October and he was last night given the ‘keys' so he can now take it back to his Grenoble home.

Jarno Trulli produced yet another storming lap to take 2nd place on the grid for tomorrow's French Grand Prix. The Italian thus keeps up his impressive 2005 qualifying record with his fifth front row slot in ten races.

Jarno Trulli (Car 16, Chassis TF105/02)
GRID: 2nd
First Practice Classification: 10th, No lap time
Laps: 3
Second Practice Classification: 10th
Lap Time: 1m 15.249s (+0.783s)
Laps: 15
Qualifying Classification: 2nd
Lap Time: 1m14.521s (+0.109s)
Laps: 3

"It's great to be starting on the front row again. I'm very happy with my lap because it was very clean and very quick. The car has been handling well all day, which I have to say was a bit of a surprise. Yesterday I wasn't very happy with my set-up, and we were struggling. But we changed that all around this morning, found a new direction and found a much stronger grip level. The car is working well now. This morning we were quite competitive on the long runs too so I think we can be strong in the race. Everything is certainly looking good so far."

In the wake of his practice accident in Indianapolis, Ralf Schumacher had to go out first for today's qualifying session. Despite facing the hardest track conditions of all the runners he still managed to jump to 11th on the grid.

Ralf Schumacher (Car 17, Chassis TF105/03)
GRID: 11th
First Practice Classification: 14th
No lap time
Laps: 2
Second Practice Classification: 2nd
Lap Time: 1m14.603s (+0.137s)
Laps: 13
Qualifying Classification: 12th
Lap Time: 1m15.771s (+1.359s)
Laps: 3

"It was a pity that I locked up on my way into the Adelaide hairpin because that lost me half a second. Apart from that, it was a reasonably clear lap and it was good to gain a few places despite going out first when the track was at its most slippery. Now we have to look forward to tomorrow and try and gain some more points out of the race, as I have often managed this year from similar positions."

Panasonic Toyota Racing will work hard to make the most of Jarno Trulli's front row slot for tomorrow's French Grand Prix. With Ralf Schumacher on the sixth row the team is well set for another double points finish.

Dieter Gass – Chief Race Engineer
"Obviously we are very pleased to have yet another front row position from Jarno. It's happened so often that we have to say that he did his usual lap performance, but it was very good. He looks quite strong for the race as well, especially starting from second. Unfortunately Ralf suffered again from being the first car out. He had a small lock-up on one of his wheels at the Adelaide corner which cost him some time. Without that he would have been in the top ten. So overall we can be very happy with today's work. We are confident with our race strategy so we are looking forward to a very strong race tomorrow."