Michael Schumacher once again dominated proceedings in Albert Park, fastest overall in a rain-soaked race day warm-up while Giancarlo Fisichella and Takuma Sato were 8th and 14th respectively in their DHL Jordan Hondas. The reigning World...
Michael Schumacher once again dominated proceedings in Albert Park, fastest overall in a rain-soaked race day warm-up while Giancarlo Fisichella and Takuma Sato were 8th and 14th respectively in their DHL Jordan Hondas. The reigning World Champion produced a typically stunning performance in his Ferrari, lapping the 3.295 mile/5.303km track in 1:41.509 - fully 1.3 seconds fastest than the second placed car of team mate Rubens Barrichello.
Conditions in Melbourne have been generally cold and wet throughout the weekend, and this morning was no different. Venturing out onto the track on full wets at the start of the session some, including both Jordans, moved onto intermediates towards the end, although the drizzle which had stopped prior to warm-up then returned.
The DHL Jordan Honda team had a promising warm-up, recovering well from the high drama of yesterday. Takuma Sato will race the T-car (chassis number 2) while his former race chassis (chassis 3), badly damaged in Saturday morning's crash, has been rebuilt and turned into the spare car for today's race, set up for Giancarlo Fisichella. The Jordan mechanics worked until 3.30am today rebuilding and repairing the damaged car, this coming on the back of a week of long days and evenings spent at the track.
This morning's session went according to plan for Giancarlo who tried both his race and spare cars, commenting that they felt good particularly in high speed corners. Taku ran well until he stopped out on the track shortly before the end of the session with a minor gearbox problem.
Jordan's Trevor Foster who has overall responsibility for race team operations, said: "Giancarlo was fairly happy with his car and looks in good shape. Takuma's car developed an electrical fault in the transmission, causing it to shut down. Overall we spent the session checking the systems out and finding the cross-over point at which the intermediate tyres became quicker than full wets."
There were a few incidents on the wet track both McLaren's having grassy excursions before David Coulthard and Kimi Raikkonen clocked the 3rd and 5th fastest times, sandwiching Ralf Schumacher's Williams. His team mate Juan Pablo Montoya had a difficult session, finishing back in 15th place. Felipe Massa and Nick Heidfeld were 7th and 8th in their Saubers, Massa stopping on the track during the closing stages of the session. Meanwhile the Toyota of Mika Salo crashed into a wall after spinning out of control when he lost control on one of the white road markings that become so lethal when wet. Damage was confined to the nose cone and front wing.