French GP: Qualifying notes - Ferrari


Fifth pole for Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro from eight qualifying sessions run so far this season, set for the fourth time by Felipe Massa. This is the sixteenth time that a Ferrari driver will start the French Grand Prix from pole position, the 191st in the history of the Prancing Horse in Formula 1. For Felipe it was his seventh career pole.

Jean Todt: This was a very close qualifying session, which ended with our two cars securing first and third places, with Felipe and Kimi respectively. Our cars have shown themselves to be competitive right from the start of this Magny-Cours weekend and this was confirmed for the first time today. However, we are well aware that while this year, the qualifying result seems to be even more important than usual in determining the final result, today's achievement is only the first step. The longer and more important one comes tomorrow afternoon. It will be a closely contested race, given how well matched are the teams. As usual in the race, the key factors will be strategy, reliability, as well as the work of the team and the drivers.

Felipe Massa: I am very happy with this pole. On my first run in Q3 I did a good lap, while on the second, maybe I went a little bit over the limit in terms of getting the best out of the tyres and could not recover from that. Obviously, I hope that the run of wins obtained by drivers starting from pole continues tomorrow! It could rain, but I think we have a car that is good in any conditions. It is great to be back fighting at the front. Already at the Silverstone test last week, we saw that the car had improved, had more grip even on the opening lap and here we have found a good balance from the start of the weekend. In free practice and in the first two qualifying sessions, I never put together a clean lap, but I did manage it in Q3.

Kimi Raikkonen: Of course I would have preferred to be in front of everyone, but third place is not so bad. We will have to see how the race evolves and the various strategies will work out. I am confident, because I know I have a car that is competitive over a race distance. On my final run in Q3, I made a mistake that probably cost me a place on the front row. I have a good feeling with the F2007, which is very well balanced and has been since the start of the weekend. It will be a very tough race and I will give it my best shot to bring home as many points as possible.

Luca Baldisserri: It was a very exciting hour of qualifying, with a fine duel between ourselves and our main rivals. We are back to having a car on pole position after a period in which we experienced some difficulties in this part of the Grand Prix weekend. It is the result of all the work done these past weeks, both in the factory in developing the cars and on the track in testing. We know however that the race is the most important part of the weekend. The two F2007 are well balanced and everything is in place for us to do well. It is an important race because we have to reverse the trend in both classifications if we want to keep our hopes alive.

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Published: 30/06/2007
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