Monaco race notes - WilliamsF1


Both BMW WilliamsF1 Team drivers achieved their career best Formula One results at the most important Grand Prix of the entire season. Nick Heidfeld finished second in Monaco while his team-mate Mark Webber joined him on the podium having followed Nick over the line in third position.

Nick Heidfeld: I am very very pleased to get my best ever result here in Monaco. I had a very good start and I even touched Mark at the first corner, but that's racing. But then I was stuck with other drivers behind Trulli for some time so I tried to save fuel and tyres. When the safety car came out and the engineers called us both in, the guys did a fantastic job in getting us out so quickly. Then I was lucky because the engineers decided to take a risk and pit earlier, for my second stop and this allowed me to get ahead of Mark. A lot of cars seemed to have problems with their tyres today but we didn't and towards the end I pushed as hard as I could. When I caught up to Alonso I knew he was struggling with his tyres so I decided to wait for a couple of laps to weigh up the best possibility to overtake him. Fernando defended well but I was just able to out-brake him which was such a good feeling.

Mark Webber: It's my first podium finish in F1 and it's very good to have two cars on the podium here, after a not so easy start to this season. Last week in Vallelunga we made a lot of tyre testing for this race and our choice paid off today because apart from McLaren today we were much stronger than anybody else. I was stuck behind Jarno in the first part of the race and it was frustrating. Then unfortunately Nick passed me at the second pit-stop and we were both again held up by Alonso, who was struggling with his tyres. Obviously, once Nick had got ahead of Fernando he made it very difficult for me into the chicane. We had a good fight and I just made it past him. It's been a great effort from WilliamsF1, BMW and Michelin. We showed today good performance and reliability. I just wished I could have driven in some clean air today!

Sam Michael (Technical Director WilliamsF1): It was a good job from the whole team and it was fantastic to see Nick and Mark side by side on the podium. We raced a tyre that was perfectly suited to Monaco. This is a circuit that rewards cars with a lot of downforce and an ability to look after the tyres. From today's result we were clearly the closest to McLaren. On the strategy we made ground during the safety car period by stopping both of our cars. On the second stop we took a risk with Nick by calling him in earlier. We then did the same with Mark but unfortunately for Mark he lost a place to Nick.

Mario Theissen (BMW Motorsport Director): This was a Monaco Grand Prix with all sort of highs and lows which are typical for this unique race. Both drivers got stuck behind slower cars for most of the race distance. Only the overtaking manoeuvres at the end set them free. At the end of the day we have a great result for both drivers and the entire team. It is the best result of our season so far and reminds us of the Monaco Grand Prix of two years ago which marked a turning point.

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Published: 22/05/2005
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