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April 2003 More News

Webber to start Brazilian Grand Prix in third position
6 April 2003 | 5:38am

Saturday, April 5, 2003

For immediate release

WEBBER TO START BRAZILIAN GRAND PRIX IN THIRD POSITION
Career best F1 grid position for Webber and Jaguar Racing

After setting the pace in yesterday's wet pre-qualifying session, Mark Webber continued his momentum into today's official qualifying session at Interlagos with a storming performance which will see the Jaguar Racing driver line up in third place for the Brazilian Grand Prix – the best qualifying result to date for both Webber and his Milton Keynes-based team.

The 26-year old from Queanbeyan in New South Wales, set a best time of 1min 13.851s, just under 5/100ths of a second off the pole time set by Brazilian Rubens Barrichello. Indeed, had it not been for the fact that Mark was carrying a little bit more downforce than Rubens, the Australian would have been destined for pole position as both his first and second sector times were quicker than the Ferrari driver's!

Despite the earlier forecast of a wet Saturday, the rain failed to materialise and today's practice and qualifying sessions all took place in dry conditions. Webber looked to be in good shape from the outset, setting the eighth fastest time in both practice sessions while in the qualifying warm-up session, he improved to sixth fastest.

Having set the fastest time on Friday, it was Webber's privilege to go last in today's all-important qualifying session and despite the expectations of the team weighing on his shoulders, he rose to the occasion.

"It's been a really special day for the whole team. We've had a very good weekend so far and I hope our luck will continue into Sunday," said a delighted Webber, " We did some good work this morning on race set-up and then this afternoon, the qualifying session couldn't have gone any better for me. I was really happy with the way I drove and it was by far my best qualifying lap under the new regulations. In Australia and Malaysia, I made too many mistakes but today, everything came together nicely. The car and Michelin worked well together and it's a credit to the guys at the factory for all their effort. This is the start of more to come.

"My first two sector times were pretty strong but we were carrying a little bit more downforce than both Rubens and David Coulthard, and that's where they were able to grab a bit of time back on us in the final sector."

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