Gustav Brunner Q&A

After Cristiano da Matta's good run to sixth in Spain, Toyota faced more disappointment in Austria, where its TF103 was well off the pace all weekend. Da Matta's launch control glitch caused not one but two aborted starts, while team-mate Olivier Panis retired early after debris caused suspension damage. The team's disappointing form at least in part reflects its general lack of knowledge of many of the circuits. It will be interesting to see how the car performs at Monaco, where its predecessor looked pretty handy last year. Panis certainly knows his way around the track, while da Matta has plenty of experience of street tracks. Adam Cooper spoke to Toyota technical guru Gustav Brunner after his local race

Gustav Brunner Q&A



"No, I'm not enough of a specialist. Inside these electronic boxes, God knows what happens there! It just stalled and he couldn't catch it. I think the second time they shouldn't have stopped it. That was a mistake from race control, in my opinion. That's why they put you to the rear, so that if you have another problem the race can go ahead and they push you off afterwards."



"He hit something hard, because there was lots of damage on his car. What, I don't know, but it could have been ballast or something heavy from another car. It broke the suspension, and the trackrod was completely chopped in half, and his bargeboard has damage. He had no steering left."



"Yes. The problem is we chose the hard tyres, harder than the others. I don't mean this weekend, but 10 days ago, when we made the pre-selection with Michelin. We didn't chose the soft versions which the others had. So the whole weekend we were too hard, and we had little grip or no grip. So it was a good decision to come in early and got for one stop. With our tyres you could do no stops, but the tank is too small."



"In fact we were as disappointed with Spain as we are here, because also there we made certain mistakes in the tyre choice, in the set-up, and God knows what. Anyway there was a little bit of a result in Spain, but there was also a technical problem with Olivier, so overall it was also disappointing. I've said that maybe we should send Olivier to Lourdes, and also the whole team should to go church on Sunday morning because they've got nothing else to do anyway! Then maybe our luck will change a little bit."



"No, the team works well in getting on top of the car, to get the most grip out of it. But of course if it's the tyres you can do what you want, and you cannot reinvent the aerodynamics. Every variation in the suspension set-up has been tried here, but in a very good way, actually."



"Yes, but I would say with all the tyre choices there's a question mark. We are conservative. Probably there we need to change more, as we get experience. Toyota is known for being a conservative company, but in racing it doesn't always pay off. It might have done if would have been 40C here, but that's very unlikely at this time of the year. Probably we would have been the only ones with the right choice. We maybe need to be a little bit more brave. But on the other hand it's maybe because we do have our backs against the wall, because we do need some more points before we get more brave. It's nothing too serious."



"I'm optimistic for every race which is to come this season!"



"Yeah, also we are slowly getting there, even if it doesn't show in the results yet. Our team is not frightened of any of the circuits. We should be reasonably good everywhere. If you look back at last season, we were frightened to go to Magny-Cours, we were frightened to go to Hockenheim, because we knew we didn't have enough downforce, the thing will slide, the rear tyres will go off. We have a lot better car and we don't have these problems any more. We are more confident. Of course we still have to learn, but it's always moving forward, this game."



"They deserve better results. They are both very good, and amongst these disappointments and the building up of the pressure, they keep very cool and calm. You cannot wish for better. There's nothing wrong with those boys, I would say!"



"Very well. I'm sure the time will come when Cristiano will beat Olivier."

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