Atlas F1 News Service

Mixed Fortunes for BAR Drivers

Saturday April 28th, 2001

Jacques Villeneuve at Barcelona during qualifyingBritish American Racing drivers Jacques Villeneuve and Olivier Panis experienced mixed fortunes during today's qualifying session for the Spanish Grand Prix, with the Canadian outqualifying the Frenchman for the first time in the last three races.

Despite a difficult session where his BAR 003 was plagued with mechanical problems, Villeneuve equalled his best qualifying position by clinching seventh place behind Honda-powered rival Jarno Trulli.

"I am pleased that we managed to get seventh in the end because we had a really hard qualifying session," said Villeneuve. "We found that the rear brakes were not attached on the first run and on the second run we discovered that we were 10 kilos overweight.

"Once we had rectified that it was nearly the end of the session so we had run out of time to do the perfect aggressive lap."

Panis was not as lucky as his team mate, and after being slowed down by traffic during his best lap, the Frenchman had to be content with eleventh place on the grid.

"It was a difficult session and I am not happy with my final grid position," complained Panis. "During my fast lap another driver blocked me, which I am very disappointed about because he is an experienced driver in Formula One.

"There was also a lot of traffic which stopped me getting another fast lap in but the car felt good today, we achieved a good balance and again the team did a great job."

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