Revised McLaren awaits first test 01 Jun 2004
A heavily modified McLaren MP4-19 is expected to be among the cars on track this week as testing gets underway ahead of the Canadian Grand Prix on June 13. Silverstone in England and Monza in Italy will both host major sessions.
McLaren will be at both circuits, though Silverstone is thought to be the more likely venue for the debut of the MP4-19B, as it has already been dubbed by the media. The updated car, which the team hope will put their disappointing season back on track, features heavily revised bodywork, plus a reshaped monocoque, which has already passed the necessary FIA crash tests.
Kimi Raikkonen is due to test for the team at the British Grand Prix circuit from Tuesday through Thursday, while team mate David Coulthard will run at Monza on Wednesday and Thursday, before handing over to McLaren test driver Pedro de la Rosa on Friday.
With the prospect of another two back-to-back races ahead (Montreal and Indianapolis), the teams are naturally eager to make the most of this weeks valuable testing time. As well as McLaren, Silverstone is also expected to play host to Williams, Toyota, Jaguar, Jordan, BAR, Renault and Ferrari.
Williams, fourth in the constructors championship, have a three-day programme planned from Tuesday, with Juan Pablo Montoya, Marc Gene and Antonio Pizzonia all due in the cockpit of the FW26, while Jaguar, fresh from their point-scoring performance at the Nurburgring, will run Mark Webber and Christian Klien in a four-day, one-car test.
Jos Verstappen has pulled out of his much-publicised test for Jordan, but the team will still be in action on Wednesday and Thursday with team regulars Nick Heidfeld and Giorgio Pantano on driving duty. Toyota, beaten by Jordan in Sundays race, will run Cristiano da Matta at Silverstone for three days from Tuesday.
The Japanese squad also have a Monza programme planned, with Ricardo Zonta behind the wheel from Tuesday through Friday. The Brazilian will be joined by Olivier Panis for the first two days and then by Ryan Briscoe for the second two, as the team push ahead with development of the TF104. Also expected to test at Monza are Sauber and Ferrari.
Check back throughout the week for updates on the teams progress at both Silverstone and Monza. Note all test schedules remain provisional and subject to change.