BAR Mugello test summary 2003-04-23/25

B*A*R CONCLUDES THREE-DAY TEST IN MUGELLO Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda completed a three-day test in Mugello this afternoon. Situated near to Florence in Northern Italy, Mugello is an ideal track for the teams to prepare for the Spanish Grand Prix.

B*A*R CONCLUDES THREE-DAY TEST IN MUGELLO

Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda completed a three-day test in Mugello this afternoon. Situated near to Florence in Northern Italy, Mugello is an ideal track for the teams to prepare for the Spanish Grand Prix. The circuit configuration allows for comprehensive testing of engines, tyres and aerodynamics - all tremendously important at next week's race in Spain.

Days one and two saw race drivers Jacques Villeneuve and Jenson Button at the wheel of the two B*A*R Honda 005's. Jenson hasn't been to Mugello before so set out on a few familiarisation runs before getting down to business. The objective of the test was some solid tyre testing, engine development work for Honda and a few aerodynamics back-to-backs.

While Jenson was stopped on track towards the end of day one with a gearbox problem, he did complete 49 laps with a best time of 1:24.694. Day two went according to plan and he was able to complete his test programme, with a total of 92 laps that day and a fastest time of 1:23.895.

"I haven't been to Mugello before and I have to say it's a great track.good fun but demanding too. It has some fast, flowing corners, which helps with our preparations for Barcelona. I spent most of the first morning getting acquainted with the track then the afternoon was disrupted a little by a gearbox problem. Day two was much better and we got a lot of work done, especially on tyres for Barcelona and for Austria. All in all, productive and useful for the next race."

Jacques suffered a few gremlins on his first morning but managed to complete 99 laps for the team by the close of play, with a fastest time of 1:23.853. After 33 laps on day two, however, an engine problem curtailed his morning run. He was soon back out on track, completing a total of 95 laps with a best time of 1:23.559. Day three saw Jacques working on a full programme of engine, tyres and aerodynamics development. He completed 75 laps with a fastest time of 1:23.019.

"Although we were able to do plenty of laps this test, we had quite a few mechanical problems which hampered our progress. We focused a lot of our time on working on the engine that we used in Imola, in addition to plenty of tyre testing. We did not get a chance to work that much on set up, as we concentrated on finding the right tyres for future races."

Lucky Strike B*A*R Honda Third Driver, Takuma Sato, joined Jacques for the final day of testing on Friday. Takuma hasn't driven at Mugello since 2001 so, after reacquainting himself with the track, he got down to some aerodynamics testing. He finished the day the quickest man on the track with a best time of 1:22.858 after 78 laps.

"It feels good to be back in the car again and I'm pleased that the team now has two cars for tests. The weather has been good and we have been able to do a lot of running to try out new aerodynamic developments. I like this circuit a lot and I have really enjoyed the day today."

Shuhei Nakamoto, Engineering Director for Honda Racing Development, commented, "Overall, it has been a successful test on the engine side. We had a problem yesterday morning, but we have completed a race distance with the Barcelona-spec engine, and are ready for next weekend's race."

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Series Formula 1
Drivers Takuma Sato , Jenson Button , Jacques Villeneuve , Shuhei Nakamoto