The 2003 United States Grand Prix, officially advertised as the 32nd SAP United States Grand Prix, was the fifteenth and penultimate round of the 2003 FIA Formula One World Championship, staged at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana, USA, on 28 September 2003.[1] The race would see Michael Schumacher sweep to victory for Ferrari, and hence all but secured a record sixth World Championship crown.[1]

Kimi Räikkönen secured pole position in a bid to keep his title hopes alive during qualifying, beating Rubens Barrichello of Ferrari.[1] Olivier Panis was next ahead of Juan Pablo Montoya, the man in second in the Championship, while Schumacher would start from a disappointing seventh.[1]

There were dark skies over Indianapolis on race day that would give the circuit a quick shower, a concern for the Michelin shod teams after their tyres had been retooled after a legal challenge by Bridgestone at the 2003 Hungarian Grand Prix.[1] As a result their tyres would be less suited to wet conditions, and had less overall grip as a result of a reduced contact patch between the grooves.[1]

Regardless, conditions were dry enough and so the field universally started on dry tyres, with Räikkönen claiming the lead from Panis.[1] Indeed, there was such a disparity between the two sides of the grid that Ralf and Michael Schumacher would climb to third and fourth, while Barrichello slipped to fifth.[1]

Räikkönen quickly built a small lead over the #20 Toyota, before rain began to drift across the circuit on lap 2.[1] Fortunately it was light and had very little impact on the race, with Räikkönen extending his lead while Ralf Schumacher pounced on Panis for second.[1]

Behind, Montoya tried to find a way past Barrichello, only for the Brazilian to squeeze the #3 Williams-BMW into the first corner.[1] The two touched and the #2 Ferrari was sent spinning, allowing both the Renaults to dart past as the Ferrari recovered in eighth behind Montoya.[1]

The rain proved intermittent during the early stages, but returned with a vengeance during the first round of stops, although all of the title pretenders stayed on dries.[1] However, Montoya, who was the first to stop, was slapped with a drive-through penalty for causing Barrichello's spin, dumping him back down to eleventh.[1]

The changeable conditions suited BAR-Honda's Jenson Button, who would lead the race on lap 28, with most of the field having stopped for wets.[1] Behind, meanwhile, Michael Schumacher caught and passed Räikkönen for third, with Heinz-Harald Frentzen ahead in second.[1] The German racer then became one of the first stoppers for dry tyres to slip back down the field, and would ultimately leap ahead of both Frentzen and Button.[1]

Button's hopes of a maiden podium finish were eventually written off by an engine failure in the closing stages, leaving Frentzen in second ahead of Räikkönen.[1] The Finn duly caught and passed the #10 Sauber-Petronas with a handful of laps to go to secure second, and hence keep his title hopes alive.[1]

With that the race was effectively over, with Schumacher cruising through the final stages to claim victory and a huge nine point lead in the Championship.[1] Räikkönen claimed second to move into second in the title hunt, but would now have to win the season finale in Japan, with Schumacher failing to score.[1] Third went the way of Frentzen ahead of Jarno Trulli, with Nick Heidfeld, Montoya, Giancarlo Fisichella and Justin Wilson claiming the remaining points.[1]

Background[edit | edit source]

Victory for Michael Schumacher saw the German ace leave Italy with an enhanced lead in the Championship, and with the potential to claim a record sixth title if he won in Indianapolis. However, second place for Juan Pablo Montoya in Monza ensured that he remained just three points behind the German, and hence could still entertain hopes of taking the crown in the US. Likewise, Kimi Räikkönen had just kept pace with the title fight, leaving Italy seven off the lead, with those three the only title contenders left in the fight.

In the Constructors Championship Ferrari had cut the gap to leaders Williams-BMW in half after a double podium on home soil, although they remained four behind. Hence, Williams could win their first Constructors crown since 1997 with a one-two in the United Stats, if Ferrari failed to score more than four points. Behind, McLaren-Mercedes had almost dropped out of the fight, needing two perfect scores in the remaining two rounds to challenge.

Entry list[edit | edit source]

The full entry list for the 2003 United States Grand Prix is outlined below:

No. Driver Entrant Constructor Chassis Engine Model Tyre
1 Germany Michael Schumacher Italy Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro Ferrari F2003-GA Ferrari 052 3.0 V10 B
2 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Italy Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro Ferrari F2003-GA Ferrari 052 3.0 V10 B
3 Colombia Juan Pablo Montoya United Kingdom BMW Williams F1 Team Williams FW25 BMW P83 3.0 V10 M
4 Germany Ralf Schumacher United Kingdom BMW Williams F1 Team Williams FW25 BMW P83 3.0 V10 M
5 United Kingdom David Coulthard United Kingdom West McLaren Mercedes McLaren MP4-17D Mercedes FO 110P 3.0 V10 M
6 Finland Kimi Räikkönen United Kingdom West McLaren Mercedes McLaren MP4-17D Mercedes FO 110P 3.0 V10 M
7 Italy Jarno Trulli France Mild Seven Renault F1 Team Renault R23B Renault RS23 3.0 V10 M
8 Spain Fernando Alonso France Mild Seven Renault F1 Team Renault R23B Renault RS23 3.0 V10 M
9 Germany Nick Heidfeld Switzerland Sauber Petronas Sauber C22 Petronas 03A 3.0 V10 B
10 Germany Heinz-Harald Frentzen Switzerland Sauber Petronas Sauber C22 Petronas 03A 3.0 V10 B
11 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella Ireland Jordan Ford Jordan EJ13 Ford Cosworth RS1 3.0 V10 B
12 Ireland Ralph Firman Ireland Jordan Ford Jordan EJ13 Ford Cosworth RS1 3.0 V10 B
14 Australia Mark Webber United Kingdom Jaguar Racing Jaguar R4 Ford Cosworth CR-5 3.0 V10 M
15 United Kingdom Justin Wilson United Kingdom Jaguar Racing Jaguar R4 Ford Cosworth CR-5 3.0 V10 M
16 Canada Jacques Villeneuve United Kingdom Lucky Strike BAR Honda BAR 005 Honda RA003E 3.0 V10 B
17 United Kingdom Jenson Button United Kingdom Lucky Strike BAR Honda BAR 005 Honda RA003E 3.0 V10 B
18 Denmark Nicolas Kiesa Italy European Minardi Cosworth Minardi PS03 Ford Cosworth CR-3 3.0 V10 B
19 Netherlands Jos Verstappen Italy European Minardi Cosworth Minardi PS03 Ford Cosworth CR-3 3.0 V10 B
20 France Olivier Panis Japan Panasonic Toyota Racing Toyota TF103 Toyota RVX-03 3.0 V10 M
21 Brazil Cristiano da Matta Japan Panasonic Toyota Racing Toyota TF103 Toyota RVX-03 3.0 V10 M
Test Drivers for Free Practice Sessions
34 United Kingdom Allan McNish France Mild Seven Renault F1 Team Renault R23B Renault RS23 3.0 V10 M
36 Sweden Björn Wirdheim Ireland Jordan Ford Jordan EJ13 Ford Cosworth RS1 3.0 V10 B
39 Italy Gianmaria Bruni Italy European Minardi Cosworth Minardi PS03 Ford Cosworth CR-3 3.0 V10 B
Source:[2]

Practice Overview[edit | edit source]

Qualifying[edit | edit source]

Q1 Report[edit | edit source]

Q2 Report[edit | edit source]

Qualifying Results[edit | edit source]

The full qualifying results for the 2003 United States Grand Prix are outlined below:

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Time Gap
Q1 Q2
1 6 Finland Kimi Räikkönen United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 1:10.756 1:11.670
2 2 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Italy Ferrari 1:09.835 1:11.794 +0.124s
3 20 France Olivier Panis Japan Toyota 1:17.666 1:11.940 +0.270s
4 3 Colombia Juan Pablo Montoya United Kingdom Williams-BMW 1:10.372 1:11.948 +0.278s
5 4 Germany Ralf Schumacher United Kingdom Williams-BMW 1:10.736 1:12.078 +0.408s
6 8 Spain Fernando Alonso France Renault 1:10.556 1:12.087 +0.417s
7 1 Germany Michael Schumacher Italy Ferrari 1:10.736 1:12.194 +0.524s
8 5 United Kingdom David Coulthard United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 1:10.450 1:12.297 +0.627s
9 21 Brazil Cristiano da Matta Japan Toyota 1:11.949 1:12.326 +0.656s
10 7 Italy Jarno Trulli France Renault 1:09.566 1:12.566 +0.896s
11 17 United Kingdom Jenson Button United Kingdom BAR-Honda 1:11.847 1:12.695 +1.025s
12 16 Canada Jacques Villeneuve United Kingdom BAR-Honda 1:18.547 1:13.050 +1.380s
13 9 Germany Nick Heidfeld Switzerland Sauber-Petronas 1:17.768 1:13.083 +1.413s
14 14 Australia Mark Webber United Kingdom Jaguar-Ford Cosworth 1:10.081 1:13.269 +1.599s
15 10 Germany Heinz-Harald Frentzen Switzerland Sauber-Petronas 1:13.541 1:13.447 +1.777s
16 15 United Kingdom Justin Wilson United Kingdom Jaguar-Ford Cosworth 1:19.491 1:13.585 +1.915s
17 11 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella Ireland Jordan-Ford Cosworth 1:12.227 1:13.798 +2.128s
18 12 Ireland Ralph Firman Ireland Jordan-Ford Cosworth 1:19.383 1:14.027 +2.357s
19 19 Netherlands Jos Verstappen Italy Minardi-Ford Cosworth 1:15.360 +3.690s
20 18 Denmark Nicolas Kiesa Italy Minardi-Ford Cosworth 1:21.973 1:15.644 +3.974s
Source:[3][4][5]
  • T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car to set their best time in that session.
  • Bold indicates a driver's best/qualifying time.

Grid[edit | edit source]

Pos Pos
Driver Driver
______________
Row 1 1 ______________
Kimi Räikkönen 2
______________ Rubens Barrichello
Row 2 3 ______________
Olivier Panis 4
______________ Juan Pablo Montoya
Row 3 5 ______________
Ralf Schumacher 6
______________ Fernando Alonso
Row 4 7 ______________
Michael Schumacher 8
______________ David Coulthard
Row 5 9 ______________
Cristiano da Matta 10
______________ Jarno Trulli
Row 6 11 ______________
Jenson Button 12
______________ Jacques Villeneuve
Row 7 13 ______________
Nick Heidfeld 14
______________ Mark Webber
Row 8 15 ______________
Heinz-Harald Frentzen 16
______________ Justin Wilson
Row 9 17 ______________
Giancarlo Fisichella 18
______________ Ralph Firman
Row 10 19 ______________
Jos Verstappen 20
______________ Nicolas Kiesa

Race[edit | edit source]

Report[edit | edit source]

Results[edit | edit source]

The full results for the 2003 United States Grand Prix are outlined below:

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 1 Germany Michael Schumacher Italy Ferrari 73 1:33:35.997 7 10
2 6 Finland Kimi Räikkönen United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 73 +18.258a 1 8
3 10 Germany Heinz-Harald Frentzen Switzerland Sauber-Petronas 73 +37.964s 15 6
4 7 Italy Jarno Trulli France Renault 73 +48.329s 10 5
5 9 Germany Nick Heidfeld Switzerland Sauber-Petronas 73 +56.403s 13 4
6 3 Colombia Juan Pablo Montoya United Kingdom Williams-BMW 72 +1 Lap 4 3
7 11 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella Ireland Jordan-Ford Cosworth 72 +1 Lap 17 2
8 15 United Kingdom Justin Wilson United Kingdom Jaguar-Ford Cosworth 71 +2 Laps 16 1
9 21 Brazil Cristiano da Matta Japan Toyota 71 +2 Laps 9
10 19 Netherlands Jos Verstappen Italy Minardi-Ford Cosworth 69 +4 Laps 19
11 18 Denmark Nicolas Kiesa Italy Minardi-Ford Cosworth 69 +4 Laps 20
Ret 16 Canada Jacques Villeneuve United Kingdom BAR-Honda 63 Engine 12
Ret 12 Ireland Ralph Firman Ireland Jordan-Ford Cosworth 48 Spun off 18
Ret 5 United Kingdom David Coulthard United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 45 Gearbox 8
Ret 8 Spain Fernando Alonso France Renault 44 Engine 6
Ret 17 United Kingdom Jenson Button United Kingdom BAR-Honda 41 Engine 11
Ret 20 France Olivier Panis Japan Toyota 27 Accident 3
Ret 14 Australia Mark Webber United Kingdom Jaguar-Ford Cosworth 21 Accident 14
Ret 4 Germany Ralf Schumacher United Kingdom Williams-BMW 21 Accident 5
Ret 2 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Italy Ferrari 2 Collision 2
Source: [6]
  • T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car.

Milestones[edit | edit source]

Standings[edit | edit source]

Michael Schumacher would leave the US Grand Prix of 2003 with one hand on his sixth World Championship crown after claiming victory, with 92 points to his name. That left Kimi Räikkönen as the only man who could deny the German ace, although with a nine point deficit to overcome in Japan, the Finn faced an near impossible climb, needing to win with Schumacher failing to score. Juan Pablo Montoya, meanwhile, was out of the fight in third, with the Colombian ace only able to match Schumacher's tally at best, but would lose the title on countback.

In the Constructors Championship it would be Ferrari who held an advantage into the final day in Japan, leaving Indianapolis with 147 points. That left them three ahead of Williams-BMW in second, setting up an intriguing duel for the crown at the season finale. Indeed, McLaren-Mercedes were now too far back to overhaul the Scuderia, but could claim the runner-up spot if they had a perfect weekend in Suzuka.

World Championship for Drivers
Pos. Driver Pts. +/-
1 Germany Michael Schumacher 92
2 Finland Kimi Räikkönen 83 ▲1
3 Colombia Juan Pablo Montoya 82 ▼1
4 Germany Ralf Schumacher 58
5 Brazil Rubens Barrichello 55
6 Spain Fernando Alonso 55
7 United Kingdom David Coulthard 45
8 Italy Jarno Trulli 29
9 Australia Mark Webber 17
10 Germany Heinz-Harald Frentzen 13 ▲3
11 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella 12
12 United Kingdom Jenson Button 12 ▼2
13 Brazil Cristiano da Matta 8 ▼1
14 Germany Nick Heidfeld 6 ▲3
15 France Olivier Panis 6 ▼1
16 Canada Jacques Villeneuve 6 ▼1
17 Spain Marc Gené 4 ▼1
18 Ireland Ralph Firman 1
19 United Kingdom Justin Wilson 1 ▲2
World Championship for Constructors
Pos. Team Pts. +/-
1 Italy Ferrari 147 ▲1
2 United Kingdom Williams-BMW 144 ▼1
3 United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 128
4 France Renault 84
5 Switzerland Sauber-Petronas 19 ▲4
6 United Kingdom BAR-Honda 18 ▼1
7 United Kingdom Jaguar-Ford Cosworth 18 ▼1
8 Japan Toyota 14 ▼1
9 Ireland Jordan-Ford Cosworth 13 ▼1
10 Italy Minardi-Ford Cosworth 0

Only point scoring drivers are shown.

References[edit | edit source]

Images and Videos:

References:

  1. 1.00 1.01 1.02 1.03 1.04 1.05 1.06 1.07 1.08 1.09 1.10 1.11 1.12 1.13 1.14 1.15 1.16 1.17 1.18 1.19 1.20 1.21 1.22 'United States GP, 2003', grandprix.com, (Inside F1 Inc., 2014), https://www.grandprix.com/gpe/rr712.html, (Accessed 13/12/2019)
  2. 'USA 2003: Entrants', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/2003/etats-unis/engages.aspx, (Accessed 13/12/2019)
  3. '2003 United States Grand Prix - QUALIFYING 1', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/2003/races/751/united-states/qualifying-1.html, (Accessed 13/12/2019)
  4. '2003 United States Grand Prix - QUALIFYING 2', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/2003/races/751/united-states/qualifying-2.html, (Accessed 13/12/2019)
  5. 'USA 2003: Qualifications', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/2003/etats-unis/qualification.aspx, (Accessed 13/12/2019)
  6. "2003 United States Grand Prix". Formula1.com. Formula1.com Limited. https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/2003/races/751/united-states/race-result.html. Retrieved 30 November 2017.
  7. '2003 United States GP', chicanef1.com, (Chicane F1, 2014), http://www.chicanef1.com/racetit.pl?year=2003&gp=United%20States%20GP&r=1, (Accessed 13/12/2019)
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 8.3 '15. USA 2003', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/2003/etats-unis.aspx, (Accessed 13/12/2019)
V T E 2003 Formula One Season
Teams Ferrari • Williams • McLaren • Renault • Sauber • Jordan • Jaguar • BAR • Minardi • Toyota
Engines BMW • Cosworth • Ferrari • Ford • Honda • Mercedes • Petronas • Renault • Toyota
Drivers M. Schumacher • 2 Barrichello • 3 Montoya • 4 R. Schumacher • 4 Gené • 5 Coulthard • 6 Räikkönen • 7 Trulli • 8 Alonso • 9 Heidfeld • 10 Frentzen • 11 Fisichella • 12 Firman • 12 Baumgartner • 14 Webber • 15 Pizzonia • 15 Wilson • 16 Villeneuve • 16 Sato • 17 Button • 18 Wilson • 18 Kiesa • 19 Verstappen • 20 Panis • 21 Da Matta
Other Drivers Badoer • Beretta • Bruni • Davidson • De la Rosa • Lotterer • Massa • McNish • Montagny • Paffett • Wurz • Zonta
Cars Ferrari F2003-GA • Williams FW25 • McLaren MP4-17D • Renault R23 • BAR 005 • Sauber C22 • Jaguar R4 • Toyota TF103 • Jordan EJ13 • Minardi PS03
Tyres Bridgestone • Michelin
Races Australia • Malaysia • Brazil • San Marino • Spain • Austria • Monaco • Canada • Europe • France • Britain • Germany • Hungary • Italy • United States • Japan
See also 2002 Formula One Season • 2004 Formula One Season • Category
V T E United States United States Grand Prix
Circuits Sebring (1959), Riverside (1960), Watkins Glen (1961–1980), Phoenix (1989–1991), Indianapolis (2000–2007), Austin (2012–present)
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Formula One Races 1959 • 1960 • 1961 • 1962 • 1963 • 1964 • 1965 • 1966 • 1967 • 1968 • 1969 • 1970 • 1971 • 1972 • 1973 • 1974 • 1975 • 1976 • 1977 • 1978 • 1979 • 1980 • 1981–1988 • 1989 • 1990 • 1991 • 1992–1999 • 2000 • 2001 • 2002 • 2003 • 2004 • 2005 • 2006 • 2007 • 2008–2011 • 2012 • 2013 • 2014 • 2015 • 2016 • 2017 • 2018 • 2019 • 2020
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See also United States Grand Prix West • Indianapolis 500 • Detroit Grand Prix • Caesars Palace Grand Prix • Dallas Grand Prix • Questor Grand Prix
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