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Barcelona day five - rain hits testing 02 Dec 2005

Anthony Davidson (GBR) BAR Test Driver.
Formula One World Championship, Rd19,  Chinese Grand Prix, Practice Day, Shanghai, China, 14 October 2005

Just three drivers set times in a washed-out test session at Barcelona’s Circuit de Catalunya on Friday. Anthony Davidson was quickest from Honda team mate Jenson Button, with Renault’s Giancarlo Fisichella third.

The track was only really driveable for a short spell in the afternoon, by which time McLaren and Toyota had already abandoned hope of running. Davidson then managed to complete a 48-lap wet-tyre evaluation in the team’s 2005 machine, while Button ran 23 laps in Honda’s V8-powered Concept car.

Summing Honda’s progress in Barcelona, Mark Ellis, chief test engineer, commented: "Despite the tough weather conditions this week, we have successfully run the Concept car for the first time which has proven to be extremely reliable in all areas. The new V8 engine and the 2006 electronics, gearbox and hydraulic systems have run continuously without any major issues, which is a good start to our 2006 campaign.

“With the new engine and new regulations, everything is quite different and we have started the process of adapting and optimising the chassis, engine and tyres accordingly. This has also been the final real test for the 2005 chassis which has been used this week for aero testing."

At Renault, Fisichella managed 40 laps, as he got his first taste of the team’s restricted V10. After start simulations, he tried to work on the car set-up to improve and adapt its handling to the new simulated V8 power levels.

"It was impossible to learn anything today because of the very bad and cold conditions,” said Renault’s chief test engineer, Christian Silk. “Anyway we ran as we could because we wanted Giancarlo to acclimatize himself to the car and especially to the new power output. It helped him to have feelings of the engine changes and he got some understanding of the different chassis set-ups."

McLaren and Toyota used their time on Friday to prepare for their next tests at Jerez, which begin on Wednesday.

Unofficial Friday times from Barcelona:
1. Anthony Davidson, Honda (Michelin), 1:25.530
2. Jenson Button, Honda (Michelin), 1:30.800
3. Giancarlo Fisichella, Renault (Michelin), 1:30.854