Cristiano da Matta (Car 16, Chassis TF104/04) First Session Classification: 13th, 22 laps completed Lap Time: 1m18.889s (+2.387s) Second Session Classification: 13th, 31 laps completed Lap Time: 1m16.743s (+2.002s)
"I think we can be quite content by what we have seen from today's practice sessions. The car balance is reasonable and our areas of weakness are pretty much the same that we have faced at other tracks this year. The car is bouncing a little bit too much over the bumps and we also have a lack of overall grip. We completed a good number of laps and been able to conduct a productive tyre evaluation. For me, the tyre choice for the weekend is clear."
Olivier Panis (Car 17, Chassis TF104/07) First Session Classification: 14th, 17 laps completed Lap Time: 1m19.218s (+2.716s) Second Session Classification: 15th, 24 laps completed Lap Time: 1m17.007s (+2.266s)
"We have had a trouble-free and solid first day with a lot of hard work from the team. It is not easy to carry out a series of consistent laps in Monaco free practice because the tight nature of the track means that you often come across traffic, especially with 24 cars participating in the Friday session. I experienced this again today when doing my new tyre runs, but the results from all three cars were generally positive. We will use tomorrow's free day to look more closely into the areas we need to improve when we resume on Saturday morning."
Ricardo Zonta (Car 38, Chassis TF104/03) First Session Classification: 4th, 28 laps completed Lap Time: 1m17.426s (+0.924s) Second Session Classification: 8th, 34 laps completed Lap Time: 1m15.690s (+0.949s)
"It has been quite difficult to choose the right tyre compound for this track based on this morning's sessions. However, we did an extensive tyre comparison and at the end of the session we found a good solution for us. The course does not forgive any driving mistakes, so I am happy that we were able to finish the day without incident. In the process, we have collected a good amount of data. Overall, it was not an easy start to the weekend, but satisfying nevertheless."
Mike Gascoyne - Technical Director Chassis "The drivers worked through their normal Friday programme of set-up improvements and tyre selection. Comparing prime and option, our choice is very clear. In the first session, all three drivers suffered from the same handling problem with a loose rear of the car, but we were able to improve this during the second session, so we made some progress. The TF104 has again proved itself to be reliable and the drivers also performed faultlessly. All in all a very productive opening day."