The 2004 Australian Grand Prix, officially known as the LXIX Foster's Australian Grand Prix, was the opening round of the 2004 FIA Formula One World Championship, which took place at the Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit in Melbourne, Australia, on 7 March 2004.[1] The race would see defending Champions Michael Schumacher and Ferrari open their title defence in perfect fashion, claiming a dominant victory.[1]

There had been very little change to either the rules or the teams over the winter, although teams placed fifth and below in 2003 were allow to run a third car in practice as testing restrictions were increased.[1] Driver-wise there were no changes among the top teams in the Championship, although Takuma Sato would get a full race seat at BAR-Honda, while Felipe Massa returned to Sauber-Petronas after a year out as Ferrari's test driver.[1]

Qualifying, which remained unchanged from the format introduced in 2003, would see Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello claim a front-row lockout for Ferrari, half a second clear of the rest of the field.[1] Juan Pablo Montoya was best of the rest for Williams-BMW, while Jenson Button was a surprise fourth for BAR-Honda.[1]

The start fell even more in Ferrari's favour, as the two scarlet cars got off the grid in perfect formation to claim an early lead.[1] Behind, Fernando Alonso launched away brilliantly to jump Button and challenge Montoya, resulting in the Colombian ace locking up a sliding across the grass on the outside of the first corner.[1]

With that the fight for victory was effectively over, with Schumacher easing away with Barrichello, while Alonso struggled to keep pace.[1] Behind, Sato damaged his car after tapping the back of Jarno Trulli, while the two Saubers had lost a lot of ground as a result of Montoya's scramble back onto the circuit at the first corner.[1]

Indeed, it was the fight in the midfield that would provide the main entertainment during the race, with Giancarlo Fisichella and Nick Heidfeld, having swapped seats during the winter, battling hard.[1] Ahead, Montoya would make up some ground with moves on Mark Webber and Button, as well as teammate Ralf Schumacher during the first round of stops.[1]

Elsewhere, the two McLaren-Mercedes had a very poor afternoon, with Kimi Räikkönen, runner-up in 2003, ending up in eleventh before retiring.[1] David Coulthard fared little better as he slipped to eighth during the early stages, and failed to lap within two seconds of either of the Ferraris throughout the race.[1]

Indeed, the opening round of the season would be very tame, with Schumacher cruising after the first round of stops, while Barrichello failed to muster a challenge.[1] Likewise, Alonso was on his own in third after the early stages, while the battle between the two Williams' was decided in the pitstops, with Ralf Schumacher ultimately getting back ahead.[1]

Michael Schumacher, meanwhile, would collect fastest lap and a new lap record as he cruised to victory, while Barrichello made it a perfect start for the Scuderia in second.[1] Alonso was an equally distant third to complete the podium, with Ralf Schumacher, Montoya, Button, Trulli and Coulthard likewise having quiet runs to complete the points.[1]

Background[edit | edit source]

Entry list[edit | edit source]

The full entry list for the 2004 Australian Grand Prix is outlined below:

No. Driver Entrant Constructor Chassis Engine Model Tyre
1 Germany Michael Schumacher Italy Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro Ferrari F2004 Ferrari 053 3.0 V10 B
2 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Italy Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro Ferrari F2004 Ferrari 053 3.0 V10 B
3 Colombia Juan Pablo Montoya United Kingdom BMW Williams F1 Team Williams FW26 BMW P84 3.0 V10 M
4 Germany Ralf Schumacher United Kingdom BMW Williams F1 Team Williams FW26 BMW P84 3.0 V10 M
5 United Kingdom David Coulthard United Kingdom West McLaren Mercedes McLaren MP4-19 Mercedes FO 110Q 3.0 V10 M
6 Finland Kimi Räikkönen United Kingdom West McLaren Mercedes McLaren MP4-19 Mercedes FO 110Q 3.0 V10 M
7 Italy Jarno Trulli France Mild Seven Renault F1 Team Renault R24 Renault RS24 3.0 V10 M
8 Spain Fernando Alonso France Mild Seven Renault F1 Team Renault R24 Renault RS24 3.0 V10 M
9 United Kingdom Jenson Button United Kingdom Lucky Strike BAR Honda BAR 006 Honda RA004E 3.0 V10 M
10 Japan Takuma Sato United Kingdom Lucky Strike BAR Honda BAR 006 Honda RA004E 3.0 V10 M
11 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella Switzerland Sauber Petronas Sauber C23 Petronas 04A 3.0 V10 B
12 Brazil Felipe Massa Switzerland Sauber Petronas Sauber C23 Petronas 04A 3.0 V10 B
14 Australia Mark Webber United Kingdom Jaguar Racing Jaguar R5 Ford Cosworth CR-6 3.0 V10 M
15 Austria Christian Klien United Kingdom Jaguar Racing Jaguar R5 Ford Cosworth CR-6 3.0 V10 M
16 Brazil Cristiano da Matta Japan Panasonic Toyota Racing Toyota TF104 Toyota RVX-04 3.0 V10 M
17 France Olivier Panis Japan Panasonic Toyota Racing Toyota TF104 Toyota RVX-04 3.0 V10 M
18 Germany Nick Heidfeld Ireland Jordan Ford Jordan EJ14 Ford Cosworth RS2 3.0 V10 B
19 Italy Giorgio Pantano Ireland Jordan Ford Jordan EJ14 Ford Cosworth RS2 3.0 V10 B
20 Italy Gianmaria Bruni Italy Minardi Cosworth Minardi PS04B Ford Cosworth CR-3L 3.0 V10 B
21 Hungary Zsolt Baumgartner Italy Minardi Cosworth Minardi PS04B Ford Cosworth CR-3L 3.0 V10 B
Test Drivers for Practice Sessions Only
35 United Kingdom Anthony Davidson United Kingdom Lucky Strike BAR Honda BAR 006 Honda RA004E 3.0 V10 M
37 Sweden Björn Wirdheim United Kingdom Jaguar Racing Jaguar R5 Ford Cosworth CR-6 3.0 V10 M
38 Brazil Ricardo Zonta Japan Panasonic Toyota Racing Toyota TF104 Toyota RVX-04 3.0 V10 M
39 Germany Timo Glock Ireland Jordan Ford Jordan EJ14 Ford Cosworth RS2 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 2004 Australian Grand Prix are outlined below:

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Time Gap
Q1 Q2
1 1 Germany Michael Schumacher Italy Ferrari 1:25.301 1:24.408
2 2 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Italy Ferrari 1:25.992 1:24.482 +0.074s
3 3 Colombia Juan Pablo Montoya United Kingdom Williams-BMW 1:25.226 1:24.998 +0.590s
4 9 United Kingdom Jenson Button United Kingdom BAR-Honda 1:25.898 1:24.998 +0.590s
5 8 Spain Fernando Alonso France Renault 1:25.928 1:25.669 +1.261s
6 14 Australia Mark Webber United Kingdom Jaguar-Ford Cosworth 1:26.232 1:25.805 +1.397s
7 10 Japan Takuma Sato United Kingdom BAR-Honda 1:26.737 1:25.851 +1.443s
8 4 Germany Ralf Schumacher United Kingdom Williams-BMW 1:25.445 1:25.925 +1.517s
9 7 Italy Jarno Trulli France Renault 1:27.357 1:26.290 +1.882s
10 6 Finland Kimi Räikkönen United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 1:25.592 1:26.297 +1.889s
11 12 Brazil Felipe Massa Switzerland Sauber-Petronas 1:26.833 1:27.065 +2.657s
12 5 United Kingdom David Coulthard United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 1:25.652 1:27.294 +2.886s
13 16 Brazil Cristiano da Matta Japan Toyota 1:28.274 1:27.823 +3.415s
14 11 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella Switzerland Sauber-Petronas 1:26.286 1:27.845 +3.437s
15 18 Germany Nick Heidfeld Ireland Jordan-Ford Cosworth 1:27.469 1:28.178 +3.770s
16 19 Italy Giorgio Pantano Ireland Jordan-Ford Cosworth 1:29.156 1:30.140 +5.732s
17 21 Hungary Zsolt Baumgartner Italy Minardi-Ford Cosworth 1:32.606 1:30.681 +6.273s
NC 17 France Olivier Panis Japan Toyota 1:27.253
NC 15 Austria Christian Klien United Kingdom Jaguar-Ford Cosworth 1:27.258
NC 20 Italy Gianmaria Bruni Italy Minardi-Ford Cosworth 1:30.912
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 ______________
Michael Schumacher 2
______________ Rubens Barrichello
Row 2 3 ______________
Juan Pablo Montoya 4
______________ Jenson Button
Row 3 5 ______________
Fernando Alonso 6
______________ Mark Webber
Row 4 7 ______________
Takuma Sato 8
______________ Ralf Schumacher
Row 5 9 ______________
Jarno Trulli 10
______________ Kimi Räikkönen
Row 6 11 ______________
Felipe Massa 12
______________ David Coulthard
Row 7 13 ______________
Cristiano da Matta 14
______________ Giancarlo Fisichella
Row 8 15 ______________
Nick Heidfeld 16
______________ Giorgio Pantano
Row 9 17 ______________
Zsolt Baumgartner 18
______________ Olivier Panis
Row 10 19 ______________
Christian Klien 20
______________ Gianmaria Bruni

Race[edit | edit source]

Report[edit | edit source]

Results[edit | edit source]

The full results for the 2004 Australian Grand Prix are outlined below:

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 1 Germany Michael Schumacher Italy Ferrari 58 1:24:15.757 1 10
2 2 Brazil Rubens Barrichello Italy Ferrari 58 +13.605s 2 8
3 8 Spain Fernando Alonso France Renault 58 +34.673s 5 6
4 4 Germany Ralf Schumacher United Kingdom Williams-BMW 58 +1:00.423 8 5
5 3 Colombia Juan Pablo Montoya United Kingdom Williams-BMW 58 +1:08.536 3 4
6 9 United Kingdom Jenson Button United Kingdom BAR-Honda 58 +1:10.598 4 3
7 7 Italy Jarno Trulli France Renault 57 +1 Lap 9 2
8 5 United Kingdom David Coulthard United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 57 +1 Lap 12 1
9 10 Japan Takuma Sato United Kingdom BAR-Honda 57 +1 Lap 7
10 11 Italy Giancarlo Fisichella Switzerland Sauber-Petronas 57 +1 Lap 14
11 15 Austria Christian Klien United Kingdom Jaguar-Ford Cosworth 56 +2 Laps 19
12 16 Brazil Cristiano da Matta Japan Toyota 56 +2 Laps 13
13 17 France Olivier Panis Japan Toyota 56 +2 Laps 18
14 19 Italy Giorgio Pantano Ireland Jordan-Ford Cosworth 55 +3 Laps 16
Ret 12 Brazil Felipe Massa Switzerland Sauber-Petronas 44 Engine 11
Ret 18 Germany Nick Heidfeld Ireland Jordan-Ford Cosworth 43 Transmission 15
NC* 20 Italy Gianmaria Bruni Italy Minardi-Ford Cosworth 43 +15 Laps 20
Ret 14 Australia Mark Webber United Kingdom Jaguar-Ford Cosworth 29 Transmission 6
Ret 21 Hungary Zsolt Baumgartner Italy Minardi-Ford Cosworth 13 Electrical 17
Ret 6 Finland Kimi Räikkönen United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 9 Engine 10
Source:[6]
  • T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car.
  • * Bruni was unable to be classified as he failed to complete 90% of the race distance.[6]

Milestones[edit | edit source]

Standings[edit | edit source]

Michael Schumacher opened his sixth title defence with a convincing victory at the opening round, leaving Australia with ten points. Rubens Barrichello was second as he opened his account for the season, with Fernando Alonso completing the early top three. Ralf Schumacher and Juan Pablo Montoya were next ahead of Jenson Button, with Jarno Trulli and David Coulthard also picking up points at the opening round.

In the Constructors Championship a one-two for Ferrari at the opening round left them in an already daunting position, holding eighteen points. Williams-BMW had half the number of points in second, and were a point ahead of Renault in third, who were the only other double scorers. BAR-Honda and McLaren-Mercedes were the only other scorers in Australia.

World Championship for Drivers
Pos. Driver Pts. +/-
1 Germany Michael Schumacher 10
2 Brazil Rubens Barrichello 8
3 Spain Fernando Alonso 6
4 Germany Ralf Schumacher 5
5 Colombia Juan Pablo Montoya 4
6 United Kingdom Jenson Button 3
7 Italy Jarno Trulli 2
8 United Kingdom David Coulthard 1
World Championship for Constructors
Pos. Team Pts. +/-
1 Italy Ferrari 18
2 United Kingdom Williams-BMW 9
3 France Renault 8
4 United Kingdom BAR-Honda 3
5 United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 1

Only point scoring drivers and constructors 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 'Australian GP, 2004', grandprix.com, (Inside F1 Inc., 2014), https://www.grandprix.com/gpe/rr714.html, (Accessed 16/12/2019)
  2. 'Australia 2004: Entrants', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2015), https://www.statsf1.com/en/2004/australie/engages.aspx, (Accessed 16/12/2019)
  3. '2004 Foster's Australian Grand Prix - QUALIFYING 1', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/2004/races/753/australia/qualifying-1.html, (Accessed 16/12/2019)
  4. '2004 Foster's Australian Grand Prix - QUALIFYING 2', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Ltd., 2019), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/2004/races/753/australia/qualifying-2.html, (Accessed 16/12/2019)
  5. 'Australia 2004: Qualifications', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/2004/australie/qualification.aspx, (Accessed 16/12/2019)
  6. 6.0 6.1 'Australia 2004: Result', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), https://www.statsf1.com/en/2004/australie/classement.aspx, (Accessed 16/12/2019)
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 '1. Australia 2004', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/2004/australie.aspx, (Accessed 16/12/2019)
  8. '2004 Australian GP', chicanef1.com, (Chicane F1, 2014), http://www.chicanef1.com/racetit.pl?year=2004&gp=Australian%20GP&r=1, (Accessed 16/12/2019)
V T E Australia Australian Grand Prix
Circuits Adelaide Street Circuit (1985–1995) • Albert Park Circuit (1996–present)
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V T E 2004 Formula One Season
Teams Ferrari • Williams • McLaren • Renault • BAR • Sauber • Jaguar • Toyota • Jordan • Minardi
Engines BMW • Cosworth • Ferrari • Ford • Honda • Mercedes • Petronas • Renault • Toyota
Drivers M. Schumacher • 2 Barrichello • 3 Montoya • 4 R. Schumacher • 4 Gené • 4 Pizzonia • 5 Coulthard • 6 Räikkönen • 7 Trulli • 7 Villeneuve • 8 Alonso • 9 Button • 10 Sato • 11 Fisichella • 12 Massa • 14 Webber • 15 Klien • 16 Da Matta • 16/17 Zonta • 16 Trulli • 17 Panis • 18 Heidfeld • 19 Pantano • 19 Glock • 20 Bruni • 21 Baumgartner
Other Drivers Badoer • Davidson • De la Rosa • Doornbos • Kovalainen • Monteiro • Piquet • Rosberg • Rossi • Wurz
Cars Ferrari F2004 • BAR 006 • Renault R24 • Williams FW26 • McLaren MP4-19 • Sauber C23 • Jaguar R5 • Toyota TF104 • Jordan EJ14 • Minardi PS04B
Tyres Bridgestone • Michelin
Races Australia • Malaysia • Bahrain • San Marino • Spain • Monaco • Europe • Canada • United States • France • Britain • Germany • Hungary • Belgium • Italy • China • Japan • Brazil
See also 2003 Formula One Season • 2005 Formula One Season • Category
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