Wurz leads first day at Jerez

Testing work resumed in Spain on February 7th and eight drivers from four teams were on duty at Jerez de la Frontera. Williams tester Alex Wurz topped the times with a best of 1:18.139, his first test in the new FW28. Nico Rosberg, also driving...

Testing work resumed in Spain on February 7th and eight drivers from four teams were on duty at Jerez de la Frontera. Williams tester Alex Wurz topped the times with a best of 1:18.139, his first test in the new FW28. Nico Rosberg, also driving the FW28 chassis, was fourth fastest and the pair worked on mechanical set up.

"Today, I drove the FW28 for the first time. I soon familiarised myself with the new characteristics, which my lap times showed, and I feel quite comfortable with it already," said Wurz.

"Nevertheless, I am a perfectionist and that means that we need to do some more work to extract more out of our package. The basic elements are there, now it's just a race against time to optimise everything before the season opener. We'll be pushing flat out!"

Honda had both its race drivers on track, Jenson Button in second quickest leading Rubens Barrichello in third. Button, who was a tenth behind Wurz, racked up 139 laps while working on aerodynamics and tyres and Barrichello ran a race simulation as well as tyre evaluation.

Toyota test drivers Ricardo Zonta and Olivier Panis were fifth and sixth respectively. Zonta worked on suspension set up and tyres while Panis focused on a tyre programme. Jarno Trulli and Ralf Schumacher are scheduled to take over for the next two days.

"We did some long runs and it was a successful day in terms of learning more about the car," said Zonta. "We tried some different dampers and made good progress, so that was satisfying. The rear of the car felt almost perfect and we have some other interesting developments which the race drivers can try tomorrow."

MF1 Racing rounded off the times with race drivers Christijan Albers seventh and Tiago Monteiro eighth. Albers drove the new M16, which was launched last week, and focused on system checks and set up. In the EJ15B chassis Monterio worked on aerodynamics, software development and set up.

"Today we were working on different set-ups, the guys are working very hard and it's a good chance to test a variety of areas on the car including electronics," said Albers. "I was happy with today's run and the new car is giving me confidence, which is great for the first day of testing."

There was also testing action at two other tracks. Red Bull started a two-day programme at Silverstone with test driver Robert Doornbos on duty for the first day. The focus was on rectifying the recent cooling problems the team has been experiencing, aerodynamics and brakes -- his best time was 1:25.604. Christian Klien takes over tomorrow.

Ferrari continued its solo test at Fiorano. Felipe Massa gave the second new 248 chassis its first outing on Monday and today it was the turn of Michael Schumacher to be on track. He continued with development of the new car and set a best time of 57.652. Schumacher will be back at work at the same circuit tomorrow.

Circuito de Jerez
Circuit length: 4.423 km
Lap record: 1:15.650 (Michael Schumacher, 2004, Ferrari)
Best unofficial V8 time to date: 1:17.962 (Michael Schumacher, Ferrari)

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Jarno Trulli , Jenson Button , Ralf Schumacher , Michael Schumacher , Rubens Barrichello , Olivier Panis , Ricardo Zonta , Alexander Wurz , Christijan Albers , Felipe Massa , Tiago Monteiro , Robert Doornbos , Christian Klien
Teams Ferrari , Williams