Testing update - Davidson sets Jerez pace 10 Dec 2003
BAR again topped the timesheets at Jerez on Tuesday after another day of heavy rain at the Spanish circuit. This time it was test driver Anthony Davidson who set the pace in the tricky conditions.
Felipe Massa was Davidson's closest challenger in his second day of running with Sauber. The Brazilian did just 22 laps as the team was forced to adapt its programme in line with the weather. He will hand over to test driver Neel Jani on Wednesday.
"We focused on wet set-up for Felipe and optimised his car for his race style under wet weather conditions," explained Jacky Eeckelaert, Sauber's Chief Race Engineer. "But in the afternoon it started to rain even heavier than yesterday. Felipe tried to go out and to do some more laps but there was simply too much water on the straights so that he couldn't accelerate.
"Under these conditions it was too dangerous to continue and it didn't make sense considering our original test programme for today which was supposed to concentrate on dry tests. We were forced to postpone it to tomorrow. Therefore the schedule for tomorrow will comprise a comparison of two different damper modifications, the assessment of a new brake material and Bridgestone dry tyre tests."
Rubens Barrichello was back on track for Ferrari for the first time since October's Japanese Grand Prix. The Brazilian completed only 11 laps though, with the team unable to get through their planned technical programme due to the rain. Test driver Luca Badoer did not even venture out.
Williams had Juan Pablo Montoya and Marc Gene in action at the start of the team's four-day programme. The Colombian, fifth fastest, focussed on intermediate and wet-tyre testing with suppliers Michelin, while the Spaniard, who went ninth, concentrated on systems checks and engine and gearbox development.
Franck Montagny managed to get in a little wet-weather tyre work for Renault, but Fernando Alonso completed just a handful of installation laps. In contrast, Jaguar's Mark Webber and Christian Klien recorded over 80 laps between them, working on tyres, traction control and aerodynamics.
Test drivers Alexander Wurz and Pedro de la Rosa were on track for McLaren in the MP4-17D. Wurz also put in a couple of laps in the new MP4-19, but did not set a time in the car. The Toyotas of Olivier Panis and Christiano da Matta completed the Tuesday timesheets. Testing continues on Wednesday.
Unofficial Tuesday times from Barcelona:
1. Anthony Davidson, BAR, 1:26.256
2. Felipe Massa, Sauber, 1:26.892
3. Rubens Barrichello, Ferrari, 1:27.003
4. Takuma Sato, BAR, 1:27.199
5. Juan Pablo Montoya, Williams, 1:27.452
6. Franck Montagny, Renault, 1:27.775
7. Mark Webber, Jaguar, 1:27.855
8. Pedro de la Rosa, McLaren, 1:28.483
9. Marc Gene, Williams, 1:28.663
10 Fernando Alonso, Renault, 1:28.705
11. Olivier Panis, Toyota, 1:29.627
12. Christian Klien, Jaguar, 1:30.564
13. Cristiano da Matta, Toyota, 1:31.398
14. Alexander Wurz, McLaren, 1:32.365