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Formula 1 News - April 2005

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24 April: San Marino Grand Prix - Race Report - Renault F1

Fernando wins his third consecutive race, while Fisico retired in the early laps.

The Mild Seven Renault F1 Team took its fourth consecutive win in the San Marino Grand Prix this afternoon at Imola. Starting from second position, Fernando Alonso took an impressive win, his third consecutive victory of the season, under intense pressure from Michael Schumacher during the final laps. He further consolidated his lead in the World Championship, and now sits atop the standings with 36 points. Giancarlo Fisichella retired after just five laps after spinning at turn two, following a currently unspecified technical problem.

The RS25 V10 fitted to Fernando Alonso's car also became the first engine in the modern era of Formula 1 to win two consecutive races. The victory was the 101st for a Renault engine in Formula 1, and the 21st for a Renault chassis.

Fernando Alonso, Winner
"I think this was my best win in Formula 1 so far, because it was different to all the others: I didn't have a gap to allow me to be conservative, and I knew Michael was catching up from behind and that meant I had to push all the way through the race. In the end, it worked perfectly and things were very close in the final laps, but I was 99% sure he would not be able to overtake here in Imola. The car was good, but the race was the first time I had done more than three timed laps in a row this weekend because we were managing the engine very carefully: we had to make our best estimates with the set-up, and then each lap was a surprise as we discovered how the car changed. I lost some grip towards the end of the race but in the end, we did enough to get the win. Three in a row is a fantastic feeling, and I'm really looking forward to Spain: it will be a big party for everybody, and I think we can aim for the podium again."

Giancarlo Fisichella, Retired, lap 5
"I really don't know what happened this afternoon. I made a good start and was much quicker than Heidfeld, so was just sitting behind him and waiting for the pit-stop. Then going through turn 2, I lost the rear end of the car and spun into the wall. Obviously, it is extremely disappointing because we had the pace again today to score some points."

Flavio Briatore, Managing Director
"I am very happy for the team and Fernando. He did an incredible job today, and the way he held off Michael in the last ten laps was incredible. I think this was a great race for Formula 1 and congratulations to Ferrari for their performance today. For me, this was a great afternoon for Renault and Fernando, but also for our sport. I would also like to thank Louis Schweitzer: this is the last F1 victory before he leaves his position as President of Renault, and we are proud to offer it to him."

Pat Symonds, Executive Director of Engineering «It was fantastic to see two drivers of the calibre of Fernando and Michael fighting for the victory until the last corner. Michael's pace this afternoon was amazing, and Ferrari are certainly back. Fernando nevertheless coped with it, and dominated and controlled the race in difficult circumstances. As we have seen before from him this season, it was the drive of a future champion.
We are all very sorry for Giancarlo. All we know at this stage is that his accident appears to have been a car problem, but we will not know what happened until we investigate further.
Michelin also provided us with a strong balance of tyre performance between qualifying and the race. While obviously we now face a very strong challenge from our competitors, Michelin have done a very good job in responding to the challenge so far this season, and we look forward to an equally exciting race in Spain."

2005 San Marino Grand Prix - Main Page
2005 San Marino Grand Prix - Team and Driver Race Reports Page

Sunday Qualifying

Fernando will start this afternoon's race second, while Giancarlo will be thirteenth.

Fernando Alonso, 2nd position Lap time: 1:23.552; total time, 2:43.441
Giancarlo Fisichella, 13th position Lap time: 1:25.002; total time, 2:46.710

Fernando Alonso, 2nd position
"Conditions were tricky this morning, and every driver had to deal with that. The gap to Kimi is quite big, and we saw yesterday that the performance of our cars was very close; given that the balance of my car has not changed since yesterday, and it is still stable and easy to drive, I hope that the difference between us is down to the strategy. We will only find that out this afternoon. Practice on Friday showed us that the car is consistent on the long runs in race conditions, and I feel well prepared for the race. I will be going for the podium, and the win if possible."

Giancarlo Fisichella, 13th position
"The grip levels were very low this morning, and especially because I was running early in the session. That meant I had to do a clean lap with no mistakes, which I did without any problems. I have gained two positions compared to yesterday, which will definitely help me for the race. It will be a long afternoon for us, and a tough Grand Prix for the cars and drivers, but I hope to be able to score some points."

2005 San Marino Grand Prix - Main Page

Latest Formula 1 News from Renault:

Renault F1 Team unveils the R27 in Amsterdam (24/01/2007)
Renault R27 Technical Specifications (24/01/2007)
Bob Bell, Technical Director Q&A (24/01/2007)
Rob White, Deputy Managing Director (Engine) Q&A (24/01/2007)
Pat Symonds, Executive Director of Engineering Q&A (24/01/2007)
Denis Chevrier, Head of Engine Track Operations Q&A (24/01/2007)
Giancarlo Fisichella Q&A (24/01/2007)
Heikki Kovalainen Q&A (24/01/2007)
The World Champion says 'Gracias' (25/10/2006)
Interview with Flavio Briatore (06/09/2006)

More news from Renault F1

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