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Jerez day three - de la Rosa sets pace 10 Dec 2005

Pedro de la Rosa (ESP) McLaren Test Driver.
Formula One World Championship, Rd14, Turkish Grand Prix, Practice Day, Istanbul Park, Turkey, 19 August 2005

Pedro de la Rosa led the way at Jerez on Friday in a V10 McLaren. Nico Rosberg was second fastest in the V8-powered Williams.

De la Rosa ran more than 80 laps of the Spanish circuit as he worked closely with Michelin on tyre comparisons. Team mate Alexander Wurz, at the wheel of the V8 MP4-20, was 11th as he focussed on engine and set-up development.

With Rosberg second and team mate Mark Webber fifth, technical director Sam Michael was pleased with Williams' work. “Today, Nico and Mark concluded the team’s test, with Nico recording the fastest V8 time on Friday,” he said. “We’ve again made good progress with all the mechanical components and systems checks on the interim FW27C, while Bridgestone have also moved forward since last week's test in Barcelona.”

At BAR, Jenson Button went third fastest as he and Anthony Davidson continued with the team’s V8 Concept car. "We have had another productive test this week in Jerez completing our full programme,” said Button. “I completed 121 laps today without any major issues. We have been focusing on set-up, tyres and the engine, which is looking good.”

Jarno Trulli was the quickest Toyota in fourth, with Ricardo Zonta sixth, both driving the new V8 TF106. “Ricardo's programme involved basic set-up work on the reference tyres this morning before doing some construction tests for Bridgestone,” explained chassis technical director, Mike Gascoyne. “Jarno spent the morning doing set-up and balance work before concentrating on a tyre compound test in the afternoon.

“Ricardo missed out on a bit of running after a fuel system problem but overall this was a constructive day including some useful work with our tyre partner Bridgestone. Our development work with them is already paying dividends even at this early stage of our partnership."

Jacques Villeneuve was seventh quickest as BMW Sauber continued work on their new V8 engine. A hydraulic leak forced his car to stop late morning, but with the problem solved the Canadian was able to proceed with his programme in the afternoon.

"We had a minor technical problem today, but this is something normal with an interim car,” confirmed Villeneuve. “We don't expect the car to be very fast, but our long runs were quite good and we are happy with that. The engine ran well today, too. We - the Sauber crew and the people from BMW - were also still about getting used to each other. However, overall we were making some progress today."

MF1 team mates Christijan Albers and Tiago Monteiro were eighth and ninth respectively, as both split their time between the V10 EJ15B and the interim Toyota V8 machine.

"We had a productive day with both cars and both drivers,” said James Key, MF1’s technical director. “We have been able to add a lot more mileage to the Toyota V8 which has once again run very well today. We overcame the issues we had yesterday which allowed us to add kilometres to the interim car. We still have a few issues to resolve but in general we are happy.

“We also did some good work with the control systems on the V8 which has proven to be quite different from the V10 as we expected. We had a good day with understanding how the V8 differs from the V10 in terms of balance and set-up with less power."

Marc Gene went 12th fastest, just ahead of final runner, Red Bull’s David Coulthard. Gene was at the wheel of Ferrari’s interim F2004 M, the Spaniard working on development of the team’s new V8 engine and Bridgestone tyres.

Testing continues at Jerez on Saturday.

Unofficial Friday times from Jerez:
1. Pedro de la Rosa, McLaren (Michelin), 1:17.293
2. Nico Rosberg, Williams (Bridgestone), 1:19.184
3. Jenson Button, Honda (Michelin), 1:19.460
4. Jarno Trulli, Toyota (Bridgestone), 1:19.670
5. Mark Webber, Williams (Bridgestone), 1:19.686
6. Ricardo Zonta, Toyota (Bridgestone), 1:19.859
7. Jacques Villeneuve, BMW Sauber (Michelin), 1:19.864
8. Christijan Albers, MF1 (Bridgestone), 1:19.890
9. Tiago Monteiro, MF1 (Bridgestone), 1:20.400
10. Anthony Davidson, Honda (Michelin), 1:20.100
11. Alexander Wurz, McLaren (Michelin), 1:20.107
12. Marc Gene, Ferrari (Bridgestone), 1:20.996
13. David Coulthard, Red Bull (Michelin), 1:21.114