Montoya fastest again at Jerez

Thirteen drivers from seven teams continued work at Jerez de la Frontera on Thursday and once again McLaren's Juan Pablo Montoya was at the top of the time sheet. The Colombian set a best of 1:17.402 but it was a difficult day for the Woking squad.

Thirteen drivers from seven teams continued work at Jerez de la Frontera on Thursday and once again McLaren's Juan Pablo Montoya was at the top of the time sheet. The Colombian set a best of 1:17.402 but it was a difficult day for the Woking squad. Montoya's work came to a premature close when suffered engine problems late afternoon.

McLaren test driver Alex Wurz only completed eight laps in the morning before returning to the pits with shoulder pains. A trapped nerve was diagnosed and Wurz had to sit out the rest of the day. Fellow tester Pedro de la Rosa will take over tomorrow and Kimi Raikkonen will step into Montoya's seat for the final day.

BAR had a productive Thursday with race drivers Jenson Button and Takuma Sato second and third fastest respectively. Button worked on aerodynamics in the morning and Sato on suspension evaluations and brakes. In the afternoon both drivers worked on tyres.

Test driver Franck Montagny was the quicker of the two Renaults on track in fourth, while occasional tester Heikki Kovalainen, standing in for Fernando Alonso, who was away on promotional duties, was sixth. The team continued work towards the French GP, although Kovalainen suffered engine problems.

Toyota had both its testers at work, Ricardo Zonta fifth and Olivier Panis seventh. Test driver Antonio Pizzonia was eighth for Williams and Nick Heidfeld rounded off the times in 13th. "Antonio Pizzonia spent today's session tyre testing with Michelin while Nick Heidfeld completed some exploratory running of the new MK2 bodywork," said test team manager Tim Newton.

"Over the course of the day, we identified some expected teething problems which we will be working on this evening before re-evaluating tomorrow. At present, it looks promising but we have some homework to do. Both Nick and Antonio will be on duty again for the team tomorrow."

Christian Klien was ninth for Red Bull and teammate David Coulthard was 11th. Jacques Villeneuve was again the sole Sauber on track, 12th. Aerodynamics, set up and tyres were Villeneuve's programme for the day and test engineer Paul Russell said good results were achieved. Felipe Massa will take over tomorrow.

At Barcelona's Circuit de Catalunya Michael Schumacher joined tester Luca Badoer for work on aerodynamics and tyres. Schumacher was the quicker of the two Ferraris with a best time of 1:16.045, while Badoer was about a second behind. Jordan was due to begin testing at the Spanish track with the new EJ15B chassis but didn't complete any timed laps.

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Juan Pablo Montoya
Teams Ferrari , Sauber , McLaren , Williams , Jordan