Bahrain day one - Ferrari v McLaren again 27 Feb 2007
Ferrari and McLaren resumed their pre-season testing battle on Tuesday as the final multi-team session got underway in Bahrain. Ferrari had the edge, with Felipe Massa and Kimi Raikkonen finishing one-two ahead of world champion Fernando Alonso in the McLaren.
Massa, who clocked a best of 1m 31.260s, covered 102 laps of the Sakhir circuit, while Raikkonen, driving an F2007 fitted with a new aerodynamic package, completed 95 and finished three-tenths down on his Brazilian team mate. Both completed a race-weekend simulation and both will be back in action on Wednesday.
McLaren's Alonso was joined by Lewis Hamilton, who finished fifth in the second MP4-22. Both ran programmes focusing on Bridgestone tyre evaluations and set-up. While Alonso had a trouble-free day, Hamilton was forced to finish two hours ahead of schedule, after on oil leak curtailed his running.
Robert Kubica, meanwhile, proved BMW Sauber are still very much in the hunt with his fourth-fastest time. Kubica covered a total of 74 laps in the F1.07, after carrying out several long runs with different mechanical set-ups. Test driver Sebastian Vettel, tenth, took charge of the second BMW Sauber. The German teenager, however, was hindered by gearbox, power steering and hydraulic issues and only completed 34 laps.
Giancarlo Fisichella was the quickest Renault driver in sixth, as he carried out a full-race simulation, while Heikki Kovalainen in the second R27 finished in seventh. Kovalainen managed just 19 laps before a heavy crash brought his day to an unexpectedly early end just before lunchtime. Although the Finn was uninjured, damage to his car was too severe to continue.
"I had a pretty big accident today - I got caught out in turn seven and the car hit the barriers quite hard, explained Kovalainen. All the safety systems worked perfectly so I am fine, but there is quite a lot of damage to the car and I may not be able to start running again until tomorrow afternoon. That will delay our programme, which is frustrating, but the focus now is on working with the team to get the car ready as soon as possible.
At Toyota, test driver Franck Montagny was the quickest driver in eighth. The Frenchman took over from Ralf Schumacher in the afternoon, after Schumacher complained of back pain following a spin across the kerbs. Before swapping, the German driver had covered 36 laps and scored the 16th-fastest time. He is expected back on track on Wednesday.
Toyota team mate Jarno Trulli stayed out for the entire day in the second TF107 and finished in ninth - just two-tenths down on Montagny. Trulli experienced some gearbox problems in the morning but did complete 64 laps, while working on set-up. Japanese rivals Honda, meanwhile, fielded both test drivers with Christian Klien in 11th and James Rossiter in 14th.
Red Bull drivers David Coulthard and Mark Webber once again looked evenly-matched, taking 12th and 13th spots respectively. Takuma Sato in 15th for Super Aguri and Toro Rossos Scott Speed in 17th completed Tuesdays line-up.
Testing continues in Bahrain on Wednesday.
Unofficial Tuesday times from Bahrain:
1. Felipe Massa, Ferrari, 1:31.260
2. Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari, 1:31.590
3. Fernando Alonso, McLaren, 1:31.851
4. Robert Kubica, BMW Sauber, 1:32.108
5. Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, 1:32.193
6. Giancarlo Fisichella, Renault, 1:32.556
7. Heikki Kovalainen, Renault, 1:32.880
8. Franck Montagny, Toyota, 1:32.999
9. Jarno Trulli, Toyota, 1:33.150
10. Sebastian Vettel, BMW Sauber, 1:33.219
11. Christian Klien, Honda, 1:33.378
12. David Coulthard, Red Bull, 1:33.526
13. Mark Webber, Red Bull, 1:33.642
14. James Rossiter, Honda, 1:33.697
15. Takuma Sato, Super Aguri, 1:33.813
16. Ralf Schumacher, Toyota, 1:34.030
17. Scott Speed, Toro Rosso, 1:34.137