Sunday March 4th, 2001
Alain Prost believes the disappointing performance of the Prost AP04s in Australia was not a real indication of his team's competitiveness for the 2001 season.
After setting impressive times in winter testing, the Prost team had gathered momentum before Melbourne, only to be denied the points finish they wanted as Jean Alesi ended 10th.
Prost, who believes that the uniqueness of the Albert Park circuit was a factor, said: "The first race on this very unusual circuit cannot give us a clear idea of where we really stand in respect to our competitors. We have not exploited the true potential of the car."
Frenchman Alesi added: "To finish the race is an important step for us. The result is well below my expectations.
"Already on Friday we realised it would be very difficult to adapt our car to this circuit. And we haven't been able to find a satisfactory solution for the race."
Alesi's teammate Gaston Mazzacane had an even worse time when his race ended prematurely before he had completed a single lap.
"It was the shortest race of my career," said the Argentine. "I was still on my first lap when I felt the brake pedal was totally loose and I had to pull out."