MICHELIN RUNNERS SET CRACKING PACE ON DAY ONE McLaren-Mercedes/Michelin test driver Alexander Wurz emerged quickest on the opening day of the German Grand Prix weekend at Hockenheim. The Austrian lapped the 4.574-kilometre (2.842- mile) track in...
MICHELIN RUNNERS SET CRACKING PACE ON DAY ONE
McLaren-Mercedes/Michelin test driver Alexander Wurz emerged quickest on the opening day of the German Grand Prix weekend at Hockenheim. The Austrian lapped the 4.574-kilometre (2.842- mile) track in 1m 13.973s to pip team-mate Kimi Räikkönen - the quickest of the regular drivers - by 0.603s. Ricardo Zonta (Toyota/Michelin) was second this morning.
World championship leader Fernando Alonso (Renault/Michelin) was fourth, ahead of another clutch of Michelin runners including British GP winner Juan Pablo Montoya (Team McLaren Mercedes, fifth), Jenson Button (B*A*R -Honda, sixth), Giancarlo Fisichella (Renault, seventh), Felipe Massa (Sauber-Petronas, eighth), Vitantonio Liuzzi (Red Bull Racing, 11th) and Jarno Trulli (Toyota, 12th).
The Formula One line-up has changed this weekend. Former Jordan tester Robert Doornbos has switched to a Minardi racing seat. He replaces Patrick Friesacher, who has run out of sponsorship funds. Dane Nicolas Kiesa - a former Minardi driver - has taken the Dutchman's place in the third Jordan.
All three Red Bull Racing drivers have been off the track at Hockenheim today. Christian Klien spun this morning, tester Vitantonio Liuzzi did likewise this afternoon and David Coulthard crashed into a tyre barrier after losing control entering Turn 17.
Pierre Dupasquier, Michelin motorsport director:
"This has been a very satisfying day from technical perspective, although it was slightly disappointing that the gathering storm clouds skirted around the track because we have been denied an opportunity to evaluate the effectiveness of our latest wets. It is not the first time this has happened."
"The weather is adding a degree of complexity to preparations, because track temperatures are much lower than is customary here - and are likely to remain so throughout the weekend."
"Even though we anticipated that conditions would be considerably hotter, our two dry-weather compounds are working very well. They are quite different in terms of specification, but similar in performance. According to our initial analysis, it is likely that both will be suitable for racing conditions on Sunday."