Grey and cloudy skies greeted the F1 circus on Sunday morning in Melbourne, and after some early showers the warm-up took place on a soaking track.
Inevitably Michael Schumacher headed the times in the tricky conditions, setting a best of 1m41.509s. Despite a trip across the grass he headed his team-mate and pole man on 1m42.891s. David Coulthard also had a brief excursion, but still ended up third on 1m43.537s as leading Michelin runner.
Ralf Schumacher was fourth for Williams on 1m43.580s, ahead of the second McLaren of Kimi Raikkonen. The impressive Felipe Massa was sixth for Sauber, despite suffering what appeared to be a repeat of the fuel pressure problems endured by Nick Heidfeld earlier in the weekend. The Brazilian stopped on the track before the end of the session.
The top 10 was completed by Heidfeld, Giancarlo Fisichella (Jordan), Jarno Trulli (Renault), Eddie Irvine (Jaguar) and Heinz-Harald Frentzen (Arrows). Eddie was in the top 10 for much of the session, but team mate Pedro de la Rosa had problems and completed only three laps. His 2m03.262s left him 22nd and last.
Despite the conditions there were few incidents, although Mika Salo wiped the nose off his Toyota with a spectacular spin in the closing minutes of the session. Jordan’s Takuma Sato stopped on the track with apparent mechanical problems.