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Barcelona day two - Barrichello leads on slicks 16 Apr 2008

Rubens Barrichello (BRA) Honda RA108. Formula One Testing, Day Two, Barcelona, Spain, 15 April 2008. World © Hartley/Sutton Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4/23 is pushed back between the screens. Formula One Testing, Day Two, Barcelona, Spain, 15 April 2008. World © Hartley/Sutton Fernando Alonso (ESP) Renault R28 with a shark fin engine cover. Formula One Testing, Day Two, Barcelona, Spain, 15 April 2008. World © Hartley/Sutton Nico Rosberg (GER) Williams FW30. Formula One Testing, Day Two, Barcelona, Spain, 15 April 2008. World © Hartley/Sutton 
Nick Heidfeld (GER) BMW Sauber F1.08. Formula One Testing, Day Two, Barcelona, Spain, 15 April 2008. World © Hartley/Sutton

Honda’s Rubens Barrichello led the way in Barcelona on Tuesday, as testing continued at the Circuit de Catalunya. Running Bridgestone’s experimental slick tyres, Barrichello was close to a second faster than Force India’s Giancarlo Fisichella, also on slicks.

The Brazilian covered 79 laps during the course of the day, as he focused on evaluating development parts for the RA108. He will continue to test on Wednesday. Fisichella, meanwhile, combined tyre work for 2009 with several runs on this year’s grooved rubber.

“I tested the new 2009 slick tyres here today - which was the reason for my fastest lap - but we were also much quicker on the 2008 grooved rubber too,” explained the Italian. “The best lap we did here in February was a 1min 22.3s and now we are at 1min 20.7s, so we're really moving forward.”

The fastest driver on regular grooved rubber was Ferrari’s Felipe Massa in third. Massa completed 113 laps as he continued his preparations for the forthcoming Spanish Grand Prix. The Brazilian hands over to Michael Schumacher on Wednesday.

The fourth quickest driver on Tuesday was David Coulthard for Red Bull. Coulthard covered 89 laps and focused on testing new aero parts and suspension development. The Scot also completed a series of long and short runs to evaluate his car set-up ahead of the Barcelona race. Mark Webber will take charge of the RB4 on Wednesday.

Filling the fifth slot was Lewis Hamilton for McLaren. Hamilton completed 97 laps as he tested several new components for the MP4-23 and assessed different set-ups for the Spanish race. He will continue to test on Thursday. Former team mate Fernando Alonso was in also action, clocking the sixth-fastest time for Renault. Alonso tested several upgrades including a revised engine cover and updated suspension components.

“The car felt good today and we seemed reasonably competitive,” said the Spaniard. “But we have to remember that a lot of the teams were running slick tyres and so we should not concentrate too much on the times. We are certainly improving the car and we tried out some new aerodynamic parts today which went well. We managed to do 119 laps, which is two race distances, and so we are quite happy, but there is more to do tomorrow.”

Seventh fastest was Williams’ Nico Rosberg. The British team dedicated their day’s programme to 2009 preparations, gathering valuable data as Rosberg ran on the slick tyres. The German covered 103 laps in the FW30 and will continue to test on Wednesday.

Toyota’s Timo Glock took up eighth slot for the Japanese team. Glock spent most of his day working on set-up for the Spanish Grand Prix but also found time to evaluate some revised suspension parts. He will hand over the TF108 to team mate Jarno Trulli on Wednesday.

“We're going in the right direction so we hope that can help us next week,” he said. “Towards the end of the day we tried the new slick tyres for next year. We gathered some important information but we still need to learn more. For now I am more focused on the current situation, in particular the race here next weekend. The work we have done here will hopefully make us well prepared.”

Completing Tuesday’s line-up was Nick Heidfeld for BMW Sauber in ninth. With his programme primarily focused on set-up for the Barcelona race, Heidfeld evaluated a variety of aerodynamic and mechanical options over his 98 laps. On Wednesday, team mate Robert Kubica will be in the driving seat as the multi-team test enters its third and penultimate day.

Unofficial Tuesday times from Barcelona:
1. Rubens Barrichello, Honda, 1:18.928
2. Giancarlo Fisichella, Force India, 1:19.721
3. Felipe Massa, Ferrari, 1:20.283
4. David Coulthard, Red Bull, 1:20.392
5. Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, 1:20.452
6. Fernando Alonso, Renault, 1:20.616
7. Nico Rosberg, Williams, 1:20.800
8. Timo Glock, Toyota, 1:20.870
9. Nick Heidfeld, BMW Sauber, 1:20.981