Despite a disappointing qualifying, the BMW Sauber F1 Team still managed to collect two more championship points at the Monaco Grand Prix when Nick Heidfeldfinished seventh. Jacques Villeneuve finished the race but was out of the points.
Nick Heidfeld "I am extremely happy with today. Before the race not everyone was optimistic, but you should never give up. It could have turned out completely differently, but we were lucky with the circumstances and also made the most of what we had. At the start I gained four positions, but then I slowed as I thought I had damaged the car. It turned out I just used the tyres too hard, especially the rears. I pitted earlier than planned and after the safety car I just looked after the rear tyres. I was not sure about getting points here, but in Monaco the most important thing is not to make mistakes and that way you can get the car to the
Jacques Villeneuve "The start itself was not very good as my clutch was slipping, but the first corner went well and I caught Jenson Button. Then I tried to save the brakes a bit. Half way through the race I had to let the leaders by and David Coulthard also overtook me. This made me drive off the racing line, I got dirt on my tyres and they were gone so we decided to make an early pit stop. Unfortunately this didn't work very well because shortly after that the safety car came out. After all that I got a drive through penalty so it was not a good day for me.
Mario Theissen, BMW Motorsport Director "If you start on the streets of Monaco 14th and 15th on the grid and still collect two points you can't complain. Of course we benefited from retirements in front of us, but Nick deserved his two points. His start was excellent and his race performance good. Jacques didn't get the chance to be so far up the field and then was delayed by a drive through penalty.
Willy Rampf, Technical Director Chassis "For us it was a very difficult race. We started with very heavy cars and soon noticed the lap times dropping. Because of this we decided to call our cars in early and change the original strategy. Thanks to Nick's consistent performance after his stop we have two points. Considering our grid positions, our race result is good.