Testing update - Wednesday at Mugello, Jerez 02 Oct 2003
Multi-team testing continued at Mugello in Italy and Jerez in Spain on Wednesday in preparation for the upcoming Japanese Grand Prix.
At Mugello, Luca Badoer and Felipe Massa took to the track for Ferrari to carry out a technical programme centred on tyre testing, electronics and set-up work for the Suzuka race. The pair completed over 150 laps between them. Massa will hand over to Michael Schumacher on Thursday.
BAR again had two cars in action at the Italian circuit. Takuma Sato was back in the cockpit after his Tuesday accident. Both he and Anthony Davidson put in over 100 laps, with Sato the quicker of the two.
Minardi were the third and final team at Mugello, again putting the PS04, the car which is likely to form the basis of the team's 2004 Formula One challenger, through its paces. Jos Verstappen was the man at the wheel, the team's focus being primarily on chassis set-up, plus some tyre work with Bridgestone for the Japanese race.
"This is a new car for us and, despite having a couple of technical problems, which is quite normal in this sort of situation, we found a good technical direction and made steady progress today," said Verstappen. "In total, we did 59 laps on the two chassis, and the best lap, of 1 min 24.7 secs, was an improvement of 0.9 secs compared with the first time we tested here at Mugello. We are hoping to run the car again soon in order to continue the work and to have a chance to begin to judge its potential."
Williams and Toyota were at Jerez, where Ralf Schumacher topped the times. Williams concentrated on set-up and tyre testing for Suzuka, with some heavy downpours in the morning allowing for wet-weather running. Schumacher and tester Marc Gene were split in the times by the Toyota of Ryan Briscoe, who put in a second day's running with the Japanese squad.
McLaren were also due on track at Silverstone with Alexander Wurz and Pedro de la Rosa at the wheel.
Unofficial Wednesday times from Mugello:
1. Felipe Massa, Ferrari, 1:22.273
2. Luca Badoer, Ferrari, 1:23.179
3. Takuma Sato, BAR, 1:23.558
4. Anthony Davidson, BAR, 1:24.210
5. Jos Verstappen, Minardi, 1:24.700
Unofficial Wednesday times from Jerez:
1. Ralf Schumacher, Williams, 1:21.230
2. Ryan Briscoe, Toyota, 1:22.367
3. Marc Gene, Williams, 1:23.350
Unofficial Wednesday times from Silverstone:
1. Alexander Wurz, McLaren, 1:21.265
2. Pedro de la Rosa, McLaren, 1:21.929