On Monday 14 July 2003, Toyota Formula One drivers Olivier Panis and Cristiano Da Matta visited Toyota GB’s headquarters in Epsom to meet the staff.
Olivier and Cristiano took time out of their hectic schedule to meet 450 Toyota staff at Toyota GB’s head office in Epsom, following a tour of the groundbreaking Toyota training centre at Aylesbury Young Offender’s Prison in the morning.
Toyota staff had the opportunity to attend two question and answer sessions with Olivier and Cristiano in full press conference style before the chance to meet the drivers for autograph signing and photographs.
Managing Director Graham Smith commented: "The F1 drivers’ visit was a resounding success thanks to a great turnaround by staff and Olivier and Cristiano’s enthusiasm. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity for many people and a great morale boost for Sunday’s race at Silverstone."
Toyota employee Wendy Sprules added: "It was fantastic to meet our Toyota F1 drivers face-to-face and ask them questions. I am still shocked there are no women F1 drivers – move over and let me have a go I say!"
Chris Hughes Communications Co-ordinator for Panasonic Toyota Racing enthused: "Olivier and Cristiano thoroughly enjoyed the informality of the afternoon, meeting Toyota staff and their sense of humour certainly got the crowd going. It also gave us a chance to visit one of the most impressive Toyota buildings in the world!"
The drivers also visited 4,000 Toyota members at Toyota Manufacturing UK in Burnaston, Derbyshire today before moving on to Silverstone in preparation for the British Grand Prix this Sunday.
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