Just like yesterday afternoon, the two Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro drivers topped the time sheet at the end of this morning’s 30 minute warm-up session for this afternoon’s Australian Grand Prix. But, unlike yesterday, it was Michael Schumacher ahead of Rubens Barrichello.
The German was the only man to break the 1m 42s barrier in the wet and very slippery conditions. His best time was 1m 41.509 set early on, as the rain came down heavier at the end, making it impossible to go quicker. Second, Rubens Barrichello was almost 1.4 seconds slower.
The pole position man completed a total of 11 laps of Albert Park, one less than his team-mate who did 5 laps in his race car and 7 in the spare. While the Brazilian used both Intermediate and Rain tyres, the German spent the entire session on Rain rubber. Both men said they were happy with the balance of their F2001 in these conditions.
Third was the McLaren-Mercedes of David Coulthard, (1.43.537) the Scotsman surviving an off track excursion at one point, just as did his team-mate Kimi Raikkonen, fifth in 1.44.027. Splitting the two silver cars was the blue and white of Ralf Schumacher’s BMW-Williams (1.43.580.) New to F1, Felipe Massa was very impressive in his Ferrari-powered Sauber.
Despite being stranded on the track in his race car with a technical problem, once out in the spare, he managed to end up sixth in 1.43.389. But Sauber will have some work to do before the race, as the spare car also encountered a problem.