Platzhalter Motorsport

Panasonic Toyota Racing: GP of Europe - Free Practice Round-Up

Grand Prix of Europe - Free Practice Round-Up

Olivier Panis (Car 17, Chassis TF104/07)
First Session Classification: 12th, 10 laps completed
Lap Time: 1m31.910s (+2.463s)
Second Session Classification: 13th, 24 laps completed
Lap Time: 1m30.497s (+1.142s)

"I think it was a positive day. We worked quite well and we seem to have found a clear direction with selection of the tyre compounds, which is one of the most critical things about Friday's practice sessions. This morning I was not really confident with the car but the team reacted quickly to make improvements in time for the afternoon session. At the end of the second practice, I was on a very quick lap, but I lost at least four-tenths through the driving of Leinders in the Minardi. I know it can't be easy for him, but he should really learn to use the mirrors."

Cristiano da Matta (Car 16, Chassis TF104/04)
First Session Classification: 16th, 15 laps completed
Lap Time: 1m32.915s (+3.468s)
Second Session Classification: 14th, 25 laps completed
Lap Time: 1m30.531s (+1.176s)

"We didn't expect anything special in terms of the car performance around the Nürburgring this weekend. On a positive note, the car is quite well balanced, even if it is bumping much more over the asphalt compared to last year. We still need to find more grip, but we know that already. Something that concerns me, though, is the high rate of degradation on the tyres. We have to look into this more closely because it will be important when it comes to preparing for the race in tomorrow's practice sessions."

Ricardo Zonta (Car 38, Chassis TF104/03)
First Session Classification: 5th, 23 laps completed
Lap Time: 1m31.587s (+2.140s)
Second Session Classification: 15th, 33 laps completed
Lap Time: 1m30.949s (+1.594s)

"Generally I am happy, although it was actually quite difficult to choose the tyres today. We did two very long runs in the second session to contrast and compare the performance and the degradation from each of the two compounds. In the end, we did a very good run and we found a good balance for the race, but at the moment it is difficult to tell how well we will run in qualifying. The team has another 90 minutes of practice tomorrow morning to fine-tune the car from the solid base we have set today."

Luca Marmorini - Technical Director Engine
"It has been a busy but productive day, starting with some difficulties with lack of grip on the track. All three drivers did an excellent job to find a good set-up and balance on the TF104s. They are still complaining a bit about tyre degradation and the general lack of grip, but I would say that what we have achieved today is positive. From the engine point of view, we have brought the same spec engine that we used in Monaco and we have experienced no serious issues today, so we hope to continue in this way for the rest of the weekend."

Full results on Friday's free practice sessions can be found on Panasonic Toyota Racing's media website