Massa fastest as Barcelona testing starts

Massa fastest as Barcelona testing starts

Testing action resumed on May 31st with Barcelona's Circuit de Catalunya the focus of attention, despite a rainy start. 15 drivers from eight teams were at work and Ferrari's Felipe Massa was at the top of the times with a best of 1:14.940....

Testing action resumed on May 31st with Barcelona's Circuit de Catalunya the focus of attention, despite a rainy start. 15 drivers from eight teams were at work and Ferrari's Felipe Massa was at the top of the times with a best of 1:14.940. Scuderia tester Luca Badoer was eighth and tyres and new components were their programme.

Felipe Massa.
Photo by xpb.cc.

Renault drivers took positions second and third, Giancarlo Fisichella a tenth off Massa and team tester Heikki Kovalainen a further two tenths down. Tyres were their main focus as well as set up and data logging. "We had a good first day," said chief test engineer Christian Silk.

"The weather disrupted our work early on, but after that, we were able to get our teeth into the tyre development programme. The performance of the car looks good -- as we knew from the race here just over two weeks ago. We got plenty of laps done in spite of the delay, and look forward to building on this tomorrow and Friday."

Honda's Jenson Button was fourth on the time sheet and teammate Rubens Barrichello was ninth overall. The team didn't start running until later in the morning due to the rain and only completed limited laps on extreme wet tyres. During the drier afternoon Button worked on set up and Barrichello aero evaluation and tyres.

Toyota had its test driver pair of Olivier Panis and Ricardo Zonta on duty, fifth and sixth respectively. Set up and tyres occupied them mostly, although Zonta lost some time with a fire extinguisher leak. "We were mainly focused on getting through a Bridgestone tyre test that we had planned," said test team manager Richard Cregan.

"Due to the rain and wet track in the morning we completed a wet tyre test with Olivier and in the afternoon both drivers continued with long runs to help prepare the tyre choice for the next race. While Olivier did his running in the old car, Ricardo was driving the B-car collecting further data on its behaviour."

Pedro de la Rosa was the lead McLaren in seventh and fellow team tester Gary Paffett rounded off the times in 15th. They focused on wet tyre testing until the track dried out then started a programme of front and rear suspension work and aerodynamic developments. Juan Pablo Montoya is scheduled to join the test on Thursday.

BMW Sauber had test driver Robert Kubica 10th and Jacques Villeneuve 11th. Systems checks were carried out in the morning until the conditions improved then Villeneuve focused on aero work for Silverstone and Kubica on tyres. Nick Heidfeld is due to arrive on Thursday, when the programme is car and systems development.

Toro Rosso's sole representative was Scott Speed, who was 12th fastest, and sister team Red Bull had Christian Klien and tester Robert Doornbos on duty, 13th and 14th respectively. At 2.30pm local time a minute's silence was held in respect to Michelin chairman Edouard Michelin, who died in a boating accident last week.

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Juan Pablo Montoya
Teams Ferrari , Sauber , McLaren , Toro Rosso