Platzhalter Motorsport

Panasonic Toyota Racing: Barcelona Test Round-Up

Barcelona Test Round-Up

Dates: 6-8 April 2004
Location: Circuit de Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain
Drivers: Olivier Panis (6-7), Ricardo Zonta (6-8), Cristiano da Matta (8) Track Length: 4.730km

Olivier Panis
Total laps: 142
Best Lap Time: 1m15.803s
Chassis: TF104/06
"Since the Bahrain Grand Prix, I think we've been heading in the right direction. We showed everybody we did a good job there, now we need to carry on this way to take some points if possible. Here at Barcelona, we spent the test working on setting up a repackaged chassis for the next race at Imola. A gearbox control problem disrupted our running on Tuesday, but by Wednesday we had solved it and we moved onto testing tyre compounds for the Spanish Grand Prix. The weather was a bit tricky early on because it started raining on certain corners but not on others. Now everyone is working really hard in the factory to prepare for testing at Paul Ricard next week because its kerbs are similar to those at Imola, where we have struggled in the past, so we will be looking for improvements there."

Ricardo Zonta
Total laps: 200
Best Lap Time: 1m15.984s
Chassis: TF104/05
"It's been a bit of a mixed test. On Tuesday I completed over 80 laps, setting the car up and working on aerodynamics, launch control and traction control. The electronic systems make a big difference to tyre wear, and we found some improvements to lower the degradation. On Wednesday I continued that work, along with working on tyre constructions and brakes, putting in nearly 100 laps. Olivier carried out a very important tyre test but I had a few problems with the car's balance as I had set it up for warmer weather. As the track got colder towards the end of the day it became harder and harder. The weather was very changeable on Thursday, stopping us from doing our planned long runs to check the tyres. I'll have two days testing at Estoril next week, and we'll do some work to find our best wet tyres there."

Cristiano da Matta
Total laps: 24
Best Lap Time: 1m28.457s
Chassis: TF104/06
"My one day of running here was disrupted by the weather, so it wasn't very productive for me. Our main reason for testing was to set up for dry conditions, but on Thursday it rained for most of the day with the track surface switching between damp and wet. We did some wet set-up work and tried a few experiments of different traction control settings. We found a few things but we will have to do more running at Paul Ricard next week. There were a few red flags, but they didn't bother us too much because we weren't in a rush to get things done. You can work on wet set-up here, but it's very specific to this track. Thankfully, Olivier and Ricardo achieved more during the other two days, when the track was dry."