Jerez day two - Karthikeyan on form 15 Dec 2005
Narain Karthikeyan was the fastest V8 runner at Jerez on Wednesday in only his second day of testing for Williams. Having outpaced Nico Rosberg on his debut for the team last week, this time he put Mark Webber in the shade, boosting the Indians hopes of winning a full-time seat.
Karthikeyan was second overall in the times, but was barely a quarter of a second down on the restricted V10 Renault of Franck Montagny. Webber was a further four tenths back in fifth place, both Williams men continuing development of Cosworths 2006 engine in the interim FW27B.
Despite the delays caused by the unusually cold morning temperatures at the Spanish track and an afternoon shower, Renault were pleased with their progress. Montagny worked on tyres for next season, while Heikki Heikki Kovalainen focussed on suspension evolutions. Between them they completed over 200 laps.
Felipe Massa was third fastest, again at the wheel of a Ferrari F2005 fitted with a regulated power version of the teams V10 engine. He continued with Bridgestone tyre development. The Brazilian, who completed a total of 68 laps, will be joined by Michael Schumacher on Thursday.
Ricardo Zonta was the quickest Toyota driver in action in fourth place. Olivier Panis, who missed last weeks Jerez session through illness, was back in the cockpit of the TF106 and finished the day 13th in the timesheets. He shared the car with fellow Frenchman Franck Perera, who was 11th, though neither completed more than 20 laps.
Anthony Davidson and Adam Carroll were seventh and 12th respectively for Honda, both driving the teams V8 Concept car. Davidson carried out an aero evaluation and chassis work, while Carroll, having acclimatised himself to the interim machine, concentrated on aerodynamics and engine set-up.
Completing the Wednesday line-up were the McLarens of Juan Pablo Montoya and Pedro de la Rosa in eighth and tenth, both mens programmes comprising Mercedes V8 engine and Michelin tyre development, and BMW Saubers Nick Heidfeld in ninth, the German working on tyres and cooling systems checks.
Testing continues at Jerez on Thursday.
Unofficial Wednesday times from Jerez:
1. Franck Montagny, Renault (Michelin), 1:18.793
2. Narain Karthikeyan, Williams (Bridgestone), 1:19.170
3. Felipe Massa, Ferrari (Bridgestone), 1:19.259
4. Ricardo Zonta, Toyota (Bridgestone), 1:19.523
5. Mark Webber, Williams (Bridgestone), 1:19.529
6. Heikki Kovalainen, Renault (Michelin), 1:19.619
7. Anthony Davidson, Honda (Michelin), 1:20.143
8. Juan Pablo Montoya, McLaren (Michelin), 1:20.206
9. Nick Heidfeld, BMW Sauber (Michelin), 1:20.331
10. Pedro de la Rosa, McLaren (Michelin), 1:20.886
11. Franck Perera, Toyota (Bridgestone), 1:21.557
12. Adam Carroll, Honda (Michelin), 1:21.563
13. Olivier Panis, Toyota (Bridgestone), 1:21.665