JV admits 'embarrassing' race

Former world champion Jacques Villeneuve has admitted that his 10th place at the Japanese Grand Prix last weekend was a humiliating experience, but revealed that the team had tried a new set-up on his car in its bid to out-gun rivals BAR and as preparatory work for 2005

JV admits 'embarrassing' race

Villeneuve had been unable to test the new settings at Jerez before the race has his passport had been sent away to claim his Japanese visa. The weather in Suzuka also meant he carried out very little running as he would normally have done ahead of a race. The team opted to go with the different set-up anyway, but it caused severe understeer for the French-Canadian.

"We qualified with more fuel than most, we went out very early, so the results were promising, but the race itself was a little bit embarrassing," he said. "We had a set-up different from what's normal for this car, but we wanted to try them anyway. We're behind BAR and the engineers persuaded me it was the way to go, both for this year and to prepare 2005. We thought it would work here.

"Unfortunately, as we couldn't practice in the dry, it was a bit of a gamble. With the damp conditions in the morning it was really good, but once the track dried up the car became impossible to drive."

Now that he has his passport back Villeneuve will be able to test the R24 at Jerez ahead of the season-ending Brazilian Grand Prix on October 24.

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