Platzhalter Motorsport

Panasonic Toyota Racing

Jerez Test Round-Up

Location: Circuito Permanente de Jerez, Spain
Dates: 13-14-15 July 2005
Drivers: Ralf Schumacher (13-14-15); Olivier Panis (13-14-15); Ricardo Zonta (13-14-15).
Track length: 4.428kms

Ralf Schumacher – Chassis TF105/02
Best lap time: 1m17.129s
Total laps: 192
Total distance: 850.176kms

- Ralf, what was your programme?
"We were concentrating mainly on tyre testing for the German Grand Prix and general set-up work."

- Have you been unhappy with your race set-ups?
"I just wanted to run through some different options with my race engineer because due to the accident I had at Indianapolis I have not really been able to test for the last month or so. That's why I have taken full advantage of the last opportunity before the summer break and done a full three-day test."

- Has it been successful?
"Yes. It has been a really good test and we have worked through a lot of possibilities."

Ricardo Zonta – Chassis TF105/06
Best lap time: 1m17.259s
Total laps: 296
Total distance: 1310.688kms

- Ricardo, what were you concentrating on?
"I did mainly aerodynamic testing on the first day and then switched to brake work on the second day. We had a number of different brake ducts to test. I also had a tyre programme to work through which was mainly concerned with evaluating the rubber available for the German Grand Prix."

- Did you make good progress?
"I was mainly concentrating on longer runs and race tyre assessment while Ralf did most of the performance work. I am confident that we have learned some information that will be useful at Hockenheim.

Olivier Panis – Chassis TF105/01
Best lap time: 1m21.314s
Total laps: 81
Total distance: 358.668kms

- Olivier, what did it feel like to track test Toyota's new RVX06 V8?
"It was very interesting and made a good change from tyre tests. My first impression, not surprisingly, was that it was quite a bit slower than the V10. You notice that the acceleration is not as strong and that the g-forces in the corners are less. But when you consider that the engine has around 200bhp less than a V10, that is to be expected and will be the same for everyone. It even makes old men like me think about re-launching an F1 racing career!"

- Do you think the physical effects seemed less because you did fewer laps?
"I think that could also be a factor, sure. There are obviously more checks to make when you are doing a new engine shakedown. All the systems have to be monitored and with a V8 there is more vibration, so you have to assess all the ancillary components as well. The first day, for example, went very well and we had no problems, but I only did 24 laps, whereas Ricardo, on a normal test schedule with the V10, did 124! So I guess he felt more tired."

- You mentioned the vibration. Was it quite severe?
"It was much less than I expected. You always get more vibration with an eight-cylinder engine but by the third day the driveability was actually very good and I did 35 laps in the morning as part of longer runs that we had scheduled. I have to say, I am very impressed with the engine guys at Toyota.

- How much slower was the V8-engined car compared with the V10?
"On the final day I did a 1m21.3s lap, which compared to typical laps of around 1m18s for the V10s. That's very good for the engine's first run because we weren't operating it near its maximum potential. Also, you have to take into account that the engine is being run in an adapted TF105 and not a bespoke chassis. I would say that a time in the 1m20s region will be possible and that the time difference solely down to the engine will be something like 2.3s to 2.5s on this circuit."

Gerd Pfeiffer (Chief Test Engineer)
- Has it been a successful three days?
"Yes. It has been very interesting with the drivers all running very different test agendas. Ralf has been doing a tyre programme as well as working on his own individual set-up with his race engineer. Ricardo's schedule has included some comparison tests for brake cooling and we had Olivier doing the new V8 engine programme. Wednesday was the first time that we put the V8 engine on the track and so we did not do so many laps, but it was a good first run. On Thursday we had some technical issues with the engine and the hydraulics, but nothing more than you would expect at an engine shakedown. On Friday we did quite a lot of laps in the morning and Olivier was very impressed with the general performance level.