The Panasonic Toyota Racing team achieved a solid top ten result in first qualifying for the German Grand Prix at the Hockenheimring today. Olivier Panis claimed tenth spot after a clean run, although team-mate Cristiano da Matta was five places further back in fifteenth spot suffering from oversteer on his flying lap.
Olivier Panis - Car Number 20, Chassis TF103/08
Session Classification: 10th
Lap Time: 1m15.471s +1.044s from pole
Starting position: 15th
"I am quite encouraged by this result. We are in the top ten again, which is where we aim to be in every qualifying and we have found a good balance on the car for this track. We are using a new specification engine and some new aerodynamic parts on the car this weekend, which all look quite promising. Our tyre supplier Michelin is also looking competitive here, so overall I am pleased. The whole team has done a good job and we have started the German Grand Prix weekend well. I hope we can keep this up."
Cristiano da Matta - Car Number 21, Chassis TF103/04
Session Classification: 15th
Lap Time: 1m16.450s +2.023s from pole
Starting Position: 13th
"I am not pleased with my qualifying lap this afternoon. Everything felt good on the car in this morning's free practice hour, but I didn't get a great run in qualifying. We got the balance of the car wrong for the session, and I suffered from too much oversteer during my flying lap. I made a couple of little mistakes as well, but I think we have a good package for this track and the car has potential, so I think everything will be fine tomorrow."
Ange Pasquali - Team Manager
"We are quite satisfied with our qualifying session today. We have another top ten result, albeit on a Friday, but it shows we are heading in a good direction. Olivier drove a very respectable lap, but Cristiano was unfortunate to be slower than he was in this morning's practice. Nevertheless, we did some productive work in free practice and we know what areas we have to work on to prepare for tomorrow afternoon's qualifying and Sunday's race, so we remain confident."
Weather: Hot and sunny
T-Car: TF103/07 set up for Olivier Panis Spare Chassis: TF103/02
Friday practice (dry track)
Da Matta P6, 1m16.109s, 28 laps
Panis P10, 1m16.602s, 21 laps