Six drivers from three teams were on track at Jerez on January 19th, all in V8 powered cars, and Honda took the top two slots on the time sheet. Jenson Button led the way with a best of 1:18.799 and Rubens Barrichello was half a second behind. Set...
Six drivers from three teams were on track at Jerez on January 19th, all in V8 powered cars, and Honda took the top two slots on the time sheet. Jenson Button led the way with a best of 1:18.799 and Rubens Barrichello was half a second behind. Set up and tyres were the focus for the pair once the track had warmed up.
Toyota wound up its test week with Ralf Schumacher third fastest and teammate Jarno Trulli rounded off the times in sixth. Set up, suspension and tyre work was the programme over the past three days and Pascal Vasselon, general manager of car design and development, was fairly satisfied.
"There have been a few disruptions with technical problems but testing is all about evaluating the limit of certain parts," he commented. "We have always run our own work and development in parallel with the tyre development. We may have a new tyre partner but while that makes things slightly more challenging it is still usual business for us."
Test driver Alex Wurz and Nico Rosberg were fourth and fifth on the time sheet respectively for Williams. "Today, Nico and Alex put further mileage on the 2006 gearbox and engine to improve reliability in time for the start of the race season," said technical director Sam Michael.
"At the same time, they worked through various aerodynamic and electronic set-up changes and completed long runs for Bridgestone on different tyre constructions and compounds."
Elsewhere in Spain, BMW Sauber concluded its three-day test at Valencia. Nick Heidfeld was the quicker of the two cars and clocked a best of 1:12.293 in the Sauber C24B chassis. Jacques Villeneuve was behind the wheel of the new F1.06 for the first time and was just under two tenths behind.
"The BMW Sauber F1.06 felt really good," said Villeneuve. "After the first day in a new car you can tell if it will be competitive or not; this one felt fast and I think there is more potential in it than in the C24 last year. That's very positive."