Cristiano da Matta - Car No. 16
"Malaysia is one of the nicest circuits on the calendar and I think its characteristics should suit our car a little better than Albert Park. The track is faster and more flowing with two long straights, which put more emphasis on engine performance, an area in which we have been quite strong. We have some new aero parts coming for this race, which will hopefully help us out a bit, but the bigger developments will not be ready until the start of the European season. For the Malaysian Grand Prix, we will just concentrate on doing the job in hand and see what we can bring home on Sunday afternoon."
Olivier Panis - Car No. 17
"After the results from Australia, everyone in the team has rolled their sleeves up and is working very hard to try and turn things round to improve the car for the rest of the season. Our development plan is quite intensive and both of our test drivers, Ricardo and Ryan, have also been hard at work in Valencia in preparation for Malaysia. We expect to have some new aerodynamic parts for the coming race and I am feeling psychologically and physically very strong entering this second race of the season. Despite the difficult start to the season, we are all as motivated as ever to attack the Malaysian Grand Prix this weekend."
Tsutomu Tomita - Team Principal
"The first race of the season in Australia was regrettably not a good start to the year for Panasonic Toyota Racing. I am very sorry to the worldwide Toyota fans, but rest assured we are putting in our strongest effort to improve for the coming races. Looking ahead to Malaysia, everybody knows it is a high temperature circuit and we have already prepared many things to counteract this. The track itself should be one that suits our TF104s; therefore our sights are set on a better race weekend than we had in Melbourne."
Mike Gascoyne - Technical Director Chassis "We are entering the Malaysian Grand Prix in a positive frame of mind, although the debut race of the year in Australia did not reflect where we had initially hoped to be in terms of our competitiveness. Nevertheless, we have everything already in place to make constant improvements during the course of the season. We are bringing a new front wing and new turning vanes to Sepang, designed to maximise our aerodynamic performance at a track, which should theoretically be more suited to the TF104 than Albert Park was. The long straights will benefit our engine, which has already proven itself as one of the best in F1, and the traditionally hot weather conditions should also play into the hands of our tyre supplier Michelin."
The Weekend in Numbers
- 185,000,000 The number of households that Panasonic Toyota Racing sponsor ESPN Star Sports reaches with its 24-7 sports coverage
- 40,583 Number of vehicles sold by Toyota Malaysia in 2003
- 13,298 Number of Toyota Unsers sold in 2003 to make it the biggest selling Toyota model in Malaysia
- 3,730 Number of employees working at Toyota Malaysia
- 1999 The debut year of Sepang on the F1 calendar
- 1453 The number of kilometres completed by the TF104s during the Australian GP weekend
- 310.408 The length of the Malaysian Grand Prix in kilometres
- 300 The speed in kilometres, which cars will exceed along the start-finish straight
- 274 The number of laps completed by the TF104s during the Australian GP weekend
- 56 The number of laps, which comprise the Malaysian Grand Prix
- 35 The number of race participations that Panasonic Toyota Racing will celebrate at the 2004 Malaysian Grand Prix
- 15 The number of corners, which make up the Sepang circuit
- 10 Panasonic Toyota Racing's best grid position in Sepang (Salo 2002, Panis 2003)
- 7 Panasonic Toyota Racing's best race result in Sepang (McNish 2002)
- 6 2004 will be the 6th annual Malaysian Grand Prix
- 5.543 The length of a lap of Sepang in kilometres
- 4 The number of visits that Panasonic Toyota Racing has made to Sepang (testing in 2001 and racing from 2002-2004)
- 3 The starting time of the Malaysian Grand Prix - one hour later than usual with the red lights signalling the start at 3pm local time
- 1 The position Toyota holds in the non-national Malaysian automotive market
- 0.003 The number of seconds separating Olivier Panis and Cristiano da Matta in second qualifying last year (10th and 11th on the grid)