Jarno Trulli (Car 9, Chassis TF109-04)
1st Practice: 12th, 1m 28.142s (+1.455s), 21 laps
2nd Practice: 3rd, 1m 26.350s (+0.297s), 42 laps
Timo Glock (Car 10, Chassis TF109-03)
1st Practice: 8th, 1m 27.710s (+1.023s), 24 laps
2nd Practice: 6th, 1m 26.443s (+0.390s), 42 laps
Panasonic Toyota Racing got the 2009 Formula 1 season under way on a warm and sunny afternoon at Albert Park in Melbourne with free practice for the Australian Grand Prix today. With air temperatures of 18-19 o.C and track temperatures of 25-33 o.C, Jarno Trulli and Timo Glock put the TF109 to the test during two 90-minute practice sessions. Jarno was the first Toyota driver to hit the track this season, exiting the pits in the first session shortly before Timo and the pair went on to complete a largely trouble-free session of set-up evaluation. For the second session both drivers had the chance to try out the super soft Bridgestone Potenza tyres in addition to the medium compound experienced earlier in the day, while continuing their mechanical and aerodynamic set-up work. They put in a busy stint and both ended the day in the top six.
"It was a tough day because we covered quite a few laps and had a lot of things to work on. In general we have worked really hard to understand the tyres and find the right set-up, which is not easy. I am still not completely happy with the car balance and, even though when you look at the timing sheets things look pretty good for us, the car isn't completely comfortable to drive. Now we have to work on improving the set-up and the balance for tomorrow when it is most important. Anyway, I have to say it's great to be back at a Grand Prix because I love being behind the wheel with the atmosphere and excitement of a race weekend; this is what I live for."
"In the end I am satisfied with our day but I have to say the first session went better than the second session for me. In the first session I had a good feeling from the car and things were running well but then later on I suddenly had a few problems because the car was a bit nervous and didn't feel as stable on the long runs. The behaviour of the car seemed to change between the sessions so we have to look at the data to understand why that happened. So we still have some work to do but that is the purpose of practice and we will work hard on the car set-up before qualifying tomorrow."
Dieter Gass, Chief Engineer Race and Test
"It was a reasonable day for us. The track evolution was different compared to previous years but that was probably connected to the later start for practice. As usual it was dirty to begin with so that affected the grip and then in the second session it seemed the track began to drop off at one stage. The biggest issue we have to follow up is the tyres because the behaviour is not quite as we expected, but apart from that it was a pretty smooth day with both cars. We didn't have any significant issues so we completed quite a lot of laps and got through our full programme of looking at set-up and studying the tyres. It is only Friday so it's not easy to judge relative performance but we are looking quite competitive, even though we will focus on improving our long-run performance before the race."