Ferrari hopeful after positive start to the Monaco-weekend

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F1 Grand Prix, GP Monaco, Monte Carlo Circuitmc

It was a trouble free first practice day for the Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro. The F60s of Kimi Raikkonen and Felipe Massa both completed a total of 73 laps each, finishing in the top ten in both sessions.

“Our Monaco weekend has got off on the right foot, meaning we got through a lot of work without losing time because of technical problems,” commented Stefano Domenicali. “Everyone is very close and so it is difficult to assess the pecking order, but from what we have seen today, we can say that we are in good shape. As usual, qualifying will be the vital factor and, given that traffic could throw up a key variable, we will have to do a good job of managing the session as well as possible, also taking this element into consideration.”

Felipe Massa: “It’s hard to say if there’s been an improvement since Barcelona, but we are in amongst the other front runners, which is already a good sign. Everything went well from the start of the day, when we worked towards the race. From what we’ve seen today, our car seems to be quick and consistent in performance terms. In the past, I wasn’t particularly keen on this track, but more recently that has changed. Last year, I took pole and today I immediately felt comfortable, working on settings for the car, which we had never tried before. The softer tyres are definitely quicker, but after ten laps or so, you start to lose the back end a bit. However, we must bear in mind that the track conditions change a lot from today to Saturday, so today’s results are not that representative.”

Kimi Raikkonen: “We worked our way through the usual programme for the first day of practice, based on evaluating the two different types of tyre that Bridgestone has brought here and on finding the best set up on the car. I would say the car is handling reasonably well: there are still a few areas where we can improve but I am pleased with what we achieved today. Driving here is always a challenge, even if Sunday’s race can then be rather boring, with overtaking practically impossible and if you end up behind slower cars there is nothing you can do but wait for the pit stop.”

Chris Dyer: “It’s always important to start the Monaco weekend without any problems and so we can be happy with having managed that today. Time lost in free practice here can be more costly than elsewhere. As for the set-up, both drivers are reasonably happy with the handling of the F60, even if obviously, there is still a lot to do. Tyre choice for the race is particularly interesting here, given that the two types available are much closer to one another than at other races. Qualifying will be the key as usual at this Grand Prix. Usually at this track, the times are very close and this year they are even more so, given how closely matched everyone is. Therefore it will be even more important to be as well prepared as possible for all phases of qualifying.”

First session:
F. Massa: 2nd 1.17.499, 31 laps
K. Raikkonen: 5th 1.17.839, 30 laps

Second session:
F. Massa: 5th 1.15.832, 42 laps
K. Raikkonen: 8th 1.15.985, 43 laps

F. Massa 276, K. Raikkonen 279