Pre-Brazil testing schedule 12 Oct 2004
Less than 48 hours after the Japanese Grand Prix many of the teams will be back on track today in preparation for the final race of the season in Brazil on October 24.
Jerez will be the venue for the weeks main session, the last of the 2004 season, with Williams, Renault and Toyota among the teams expected in action at the Spanish circuit.
With many of the race drivers opting to go directly from Japan to South America, test drivers are likely to carry the majority of the workload in the build-up to the Interlagos race, which serves as the season finale for the first time this year.
Toyota will be fielding two men from their Drivers Academy as they put Japanese driver Katsuyuki Hiranaka and French hopeful Franck Perera through their paces in the TF104. After failing to score in their home race, the team will be eager to up their game ahead of Brazil.
Perera, 20, from Montpellier, was Formula Renault Italian champion in 2003 and this season claimed the rookie of the year prize after finishing eighth in F3 Euro, the series won by Toyota test driver Ryan Briscoe in 2003. Hiranaka, a Formula Toyota veteran, was up against Perera in that series and finished joint 15th in the standings.
After this week the Formula One teams are not expected to test again until late in November, by which time the 2005 technical regulations should be a lot clearer. Mark Webber will also be in a Williams cockpit, after Jaguar agreed to release him early for testing, and we should know whether Jenson Button really will be his team mate for next season.