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F1 Malaysia: Juan Pablo Montoya Fourth

Old 03-20-2006, 07:01 PM
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Default F1 Malaysia: Juan Pablo Montoya Fourth

F1 Malaysia: Juan Pablo Montoya Fourth

Kuala Lumpur, Mar 19, 2006
The start:
Juan Pablo started the race from fifth position and retained that place at the end of the opening lap. Kimi started sixth on the grid and was hit from behind by Christian Klien (Red Bull Racing) at turn 5. With a broken rear suspension the Finn pirouetted into the barrier and retired.

The race: After the pit stops of Mark Webber (Williams-Cosworth/lap 14) and Jenson Button (Honda/lap 19) Juan Pablo consolidated what was now third place. On lap 23 he came in for his first pit stop (8.3sec) and regained the circuit in sixth place. On lap 39 the Colombian was again in third position and three laps later he came in for his second pit stop (7.0 sec).

He resumed in fifth position and improved to fourth on the following lap. After 56 laps he took the chequered flag 39.3sec behind race winner Giancarlo Fisichella.


Juan Pablo Montoya: “The car was good today and I think we had a solid race. We lost a lot of time in the first stint as my front tyres were graining, but as soon as we changed the tyres the car came back to life and if you look at my pace against Jenson Button later on it was pretty much the same. With the hot temperatures here we did have to look after the engine, which means that we had to sacrifice downforce, so finishing fourth is encouraging. We have scored some more points for the team and I think we look strong going into the next race.”

Kimi Räikkönen: “I am very disappointed because I had a great car set-up and very good race strategy. I think it was fairly obvious that Christian Klien made a pretty fundamental mistake and ran into the back of me at turn five, breaking my rear suspension in the process. A positive side, the team has had good race reliability in the first two races and I am already looking forward to Melbourne in two weeks."

Ron Dennis, Team Principal: “Kimi being taken out in the first lap and Juan Pablo's first stint tyre graining problems masked our true competitive¬ness. We also had to sacrifice some downforce to improve the cooling efficiency of the car. The whole team is looking forward to the scheduled improvements to both the car and engine, which should make us even more competitive in two weeks time. Unlike many teams, we have enjoyed good engine reliability which also supports our positive expectations for Melbourne.”

Norbert Haug, Vice President Mercedes-Benz Motorsport: “Kimi was pushed out in the opening lap and we missed him a lot in this race. Our reliability was there and Juan Pablo drove a solid race. I would like to thank everybody in the team in Woking, Brixworth and Stuttgart for all their efforts over the last busy month to create this level. Our engines ran fine in both races within a week's time. We have a solid basis, however we definitely want to do better and we will continue to work hard."
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