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Editor/Photographer : Mark Charles


September 24 2004

Chinese Grand Prix – Friday Practice Sessions

Weather: Dry Track Temp: 33/34 degrees Air temp: 27 degrees centigrade

Jaguar Racing drivers Mark Webber (28), Christian Klien (21) and Bjorn Wirdheim (24) were amongst some of the first drivers to take to the new Shanghai International Circuit (China) today. With a track length of just under 5.5km and grand stands capable of hosting 200,000 spectators, it is one of the most spectacular circuits on the Formula One calendar. All three drivers were keen to make the most of Friday testing in order to gather much needed data ahead of tomorrow’s qualifying. Completing nearly two race distances between them the team is pleased with their progress on tyre comparisons, race set-up and weight distribution on the R5.

Mark Webber
Position: 16th Best time: 1:35.886 Chassis: R5- 05
“It’s great to be here at this new circuit. It’s got some good corners and I think we are going to see a good competitive race this weekend. The R5 is feeling good around here and we have managed to collectively complete over 100 laps today allowing me to complete my test programme successfully. My focus has been on tyre comparison and race set-up evaluation. With a variety of fast and slow corners the track is going be quite demanding on the car, however, we have come here with a strong package and I am keen to get out there for qualifying and see what we can do tomorrow”.

Christian Klien
Position: 20th Best time: 1:37.111 Chassis: R5b-06
“I have been using our new chassis the R5b-06 today as part of our continued development programme. During the sessions I have been working on tyre comparison as well as race balance and tuning. The car generally feels really good around here and I am having fun driving on this new track. It has a good mixture of fast and slow corners and this is making both the car and driver work hard. I am keen to get back out in the car tomorrow and see what we can do in qualifying”.

Björn Wirdheim
Position: 17th Best time: 1:36.363 Chassis: R5- 01
“I enjoyed today and was pleased with my testing programme. I focused on engine and aero development, as well as mechanical balance and tyre comparison. Since the track is new we were keen to complete as many laps as possible, and so this is when having the third car really helps the team. The R5 was reliable today allowing me to total up 38 laps during the two sessions. The team did a great job today as they made a lot of planned mechanical changes on my car and my data will now be used to assist in set-up decisions ahead of qualifying tomorrow”.

Dr Mark Gillan
Head of Vehicle Performance
“We have enjoyed a productive and extremely busy day here at the new Shanghai International Circuit. The R5 has been reliable allowing us to tally up over 100 laps between our three drivers. Christian has been using our revised chassis the R5b-06, which has been designed using new layout technology. All three drivers got up to speed with the track very quickly and I am also very pleased with the way the team worked through what was a very demanding programme. I am pleased with our progress overall today with all three drivers and the car is looking competitive as a result. They collectively delivered some good work today on tyres, engines, aero and mechanical balance. We made some major mechanical changes on Bjorn’s car in particular and we are now well prepared as well as motivated for the remainder of the weekend”.


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