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Jerez Day Two - double-top for BAR 12 Feb 2004

Jenson Button (GBR) BAR Honda 006. Formula One Testing, Jerez, Spain, 10-13 February 2004.

BAR continued to set the pace in the second day of testing at Jerez on Wednesday, with Jenson Button again recording the fastest time in the new 006, just ahead of team mate Takuma Sato.

Button covered 109 laps of the Spanish circuit, while Sato completed 58. The Japanese driver lost track time following an unscheduled trip into the gravel after a wheel came off his Honda-powered machine.

Franck Montagny was third fastest for Renault, working on a ride programme and tyre development in the team's 2003 car. In the new R24 Jarno Trulli was sixth after successfully completing a race simulation.

Williams joined the test on Wednesday with Ralf Schumacher (fourth) and Marc Gene (fifth) in action. The pair ran almost identical programmes in the FW26, working on set-ups and tyre compound evaluations. Juan Pablo Montoya will take over from Gene on Thursday.

Kimi Raikkonen was the leading McLaren in seventh, two places ahead of team mate David Coulthard. Between them was Mark Webber in the Jaguar R5, outpacing Austrian team mate Christian Klien who was 11th in an identical machine.

Ferrari continued their F2003-GA based programme, with test driver Luca Badoer tenth quickest, while fellow Bridgestone runners Sauber again had Felipe Massa and Giancarlo Fisichella on track, the pair going 12th and 13th fastest respectively.

"For today we basically scheduled Bridgestone tyre construction and compounds work for the Melbourne race," reported Jacky Eeckelaert, Sauber's chief race engineer. "Both drivers also ran set-up scans in the morning and did some pit stop practices.

"In the afternoon we changed the engine of Felipe's car which we already used in Barcelona last week and which has reached its given mileage. Unfortunately also Giancarlo was forced to stop his test day earlier than scheduled. He experienced an engine problem in the afternoon. As a result we didn't manage to complete our programme for today, but we will try to catch up as much as we can tomorrow."

As on Tuesday, Jordan rounded out the times, with Nick Heidfeld outpacing Giorgio Pantano as both continued work with the new EJ14. The team's progress was hampered by a number of issues, including airport baggage handlers misplacing parts that had been sent from Jordan's Silverstone base. Despite the hitches, the two drivers completed 75 laps between them.

"We have learned a lot about the car today because of the various issues which arose and we are working to address them as quickly as possible," said James Robinson, Jordan's Head of Race and Test Engineering. "Giorgio did some reconnaissance laps this morning prior to the parts being delivered and that is reflected in his times. The programme is going well overall and we have been able to collect and analyse a lot of data which will help us understand the car and develop it over the coming days and weeks."

Conditions at Jerez were fine, sunny and perfect for pre-Melbourne testing, with track temperatures reaching 30 degrees Celsius. The session continues on Thursday.

Unofficial Wednesday times from Jerez:
1. Jenson Button, BAR (Michelin), 1:16.968
2. Takuma Sato, BAR (Michelin), 1:17.273
3. Franck Montagny, Renault (Michelin), 1:17.292
4. Ralf Schumacher, Williams (Michelin), 1:17.311
5. Marc Gene, Williams (Michelin), 1:17.351
6. Jarno Trulli, Renault (Michelin), 1:17.406
7. Kimi Raikkonen, McLaren (Michelin), 1:17.821
8. Mark Webber, Jaguar (Michelin), 1:17.897
9. David Coulthard, McLaren (Michelin), 1:17.967
10. Luca Badoer, Ferrari (Bridgestone), 1:18.007
11. Christian Klien, Jaguar (Michelin), 1:18.176
12. Felipe Massa, Sauber (Bridgestone), 1:18.926
13. Giancarlo Fisichella, Sauber (Bridgestone), 1:19.030
14. Nick Heidfeld, Jordan (Bridgestone), 1:20.110
15. Giorgio Pantano, Jordan (Bridgestone), 1:21.590