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Jerez day two - Montoya dominates 10 Feb 2005

Juan Pablo Montoya (COL) McLaren Mercedes MP4/20 Formula One Testing, Jerez, Spain, 7-11 February 2005. World © Bumstead/Sutton

Juan Pablo Montoya was the man to beat in Spain on Wednesday as he took his ‘horn-winged’ McLaren to the fastest time of the session. Montoya was half a second quicker than his nearest rival, Williams’ Nick Heidfeld.

Montoya and McLaren team mate Pedro de la Rosa carried out several long runs as they evaluated Michelin tyres for the forthcoming Australian Grand Prix. The Colombian’s total was 102 laps, while the Spaniard managed nearly 100, despite a damaged radiator costing him well over an hour of track time.

At Williams, Heidfeld put in 122 laps of tyre work in the FW27. However, team mate Mark Webber spent much of the day in the garage thanks to technical problems in the morning and then an off-track excursion in the afternoon. He ended the day eighth in the times.

Renault also had problems, with mechanical difficulties sidelining both Fernando Alonso and Giancarlo Fisichella at different points of the day, preventing any coherent work either on tyre development or long-distance running. The pair were fifth and seventh fastest respectively after a joint total of 95 laps.

“It was frustrating to complete fewer laps than we had planned today, but we nevertheless began our tyre testing for Melbourne and obtained some clear directions on our choices,” reported Renault’s chief test engineer Christian Silk.

“Both drivers remained positive about the car’s performance at this circuit, but we have not yet completed any dedicated set-up work for this circuit. Along with further tyre development, that will be our priority tomorrow.”

Felipe Massa had another positive day in the Sauber C24, going third fastest after 98 laps. Team mate Jacques Villeneuve put in 95 on his was to 12th place. "Today we worked with Felipe on further improvements of the car's set-up, and also ran Michelin tyre and brake tests,” said chief race engineer Jacky Eeckelaert.

“With Jacques we focused on brake evaluations and compared different dampers. For tomorrow we have scheduled for both drivers to work with Michelin on a tyre programme for Melbourne. Overall I'm quite happy with the performances today and the reliability of the C24."

Rubens Barrichello and Luca Badoer continued Ferrari’s pre-season build up, with tyre, set-up and engine work. Barrichello was fourth fastest in the interim F2004 M, while Badoer, who hands over to Michael Schumacher on Thursday, was 13th in the F2004.

Christian Klien was the leading Red Bull driver in sixth as the Austrian team put more development mileage on their new RB1 machine. Meanwhile, Toyota finished well down the order, with Jarno Trulli and Ricardo Zonta 14th and 15th respectively.

In the afternoon BAR’s Takuma Sato crashed for the second time in two days. He was unhurt but damage to the car brought an early end to an unproductive day for the Japanese driver, who had also experienced gearbox problems in the morning. In contrast, team mate Anthony Davidson completed a mammoth 154 laps during a trouble-free session in the 007.

Testing continues at Jerez on Thursday.

Unofficial Wednesday times from Jerez:
1. Juan Pablo Montoya, McLaren (Michelin), 1:16.803
2. Nick Heidfeld, Williams (Michelin), 1:17.325
3. Felipe Massa, Sauber (Michelin), 1:17.399
4. Rubens Barrichello, Ferrari (Bridgestone), 1:17.442
5. Fernando Alonso, Renault (Michelin), 1:17.541
6. Christian Klien, Red Bull (Michelin), 1:17.583
7. Giancarlo Fisichella, Renault (Michelin), 1:17.628
8. Mark Webber, Williams (Michelin), 1:17.881
9. David Coulthard, Red Bull (Michelin), 1:17.918
10. Pedro de la Rosa, McLaren (Michelin), 1:17.953
11. Anthony Davidson, BAR (Michelin), 1:18.296
12. Jacques Villeneuve, Sauber (Michelin), 1:18.598
13. Luca Badoer, Ferrari (Bridgestone), 1:18.720
14. Jarno Trulli, Toyota (Michelin), 1:19.053
15. Ricardo Zonta, Toyota (Michelin), 1:19.766
16. Takuma Sato, BAR (Michelin), 1:20.068