Australian GP: Ferrari Friday notes

Australian GP - Ferrari on top Melbourne, 1st March - Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro got off to a good start, with Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello topping the time sheets at the end of the season's first free practice session. The reigning...

Australian GP - Ferrari on top

Melbourne, 1st March - Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro got off to a good start, with Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello topping the time sheets at the end of the season's first free practice session. The reigning world champion stopped the clocks in 1.28.804 at the Albert Park track, 0.363 seconds quicker than his team-mate who did a 1.29.167. Michael's time is already one second better than this time last year.

There is a saying in Melbourne, "if you don't like the weather wait five minutes." This was certainly true as the session started on a track wet enough for Barrichello to begin on rain tyres. Schumacher first went out on intermediates, both men ending the first hour running dry weather tyres as the sun finally made an appearance. Michael completed 14 laps, one less than Rubens, both men working on set-up and aerodynamics.

Third quickest was Giancarlo Fisichella in the Jordan (1.31.693,) followed by Ralf Schumacher (BMW-Williams) in 1.31.723. Rookie Sauber driver Felipe Massa made a confident F1 debut, fifth in the Ferrari-engined Sauber in 1.31.957, with Pedro De La Rosa rounding off the top six for Jaguar in 1.32.179.

Allan McNish and Toyota, a new driver in a new team, had the honour of being the first man out on the track this year, ending the morning in 14th place.

-ferrari-

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Giancarlo Fisichella , Ralf Schumacher , Michael Schumacher , Rubens Barrichello , Allan McNish , Felipe Massa
Teams Ferrari , Sauber , Williams , Jordan