Now the holidays are over, New Year's winter testing resumed at Jerez de la Frontera on December 10th with seven drivers from four teams at work on the Spanish track. Michael Schumacher topped the times with a best of 1:18.018 and team tester Luca...
Now the holidays are over, New Year's winter testing resumed at Jerez de la Frontera on December 10th with seven drivers from four teams at work on the Spanish track. Michael Schumacher topped the times with a best of 1:18.018 and team tester Luca Badoer was fifth fastest.
Schumacher focused on development work of the V8 engine in the F2004, while Badoer concentrated on tyres in the F2005 with the restricted V10. Toyota test driver Ricardo Zonta and Ralf Schumacher were second and third quickest respectively in the team's V8-powered TF106 chassis.
Fernando Alonso was the lead Renault on the time sheet, fourth, and teammate Giancarlo Fisichella was sixth. While Alonso worked on brake development in the R25 chassis, Fisichella debuted the new R26 and Renault's V8 engine. The Italian completed 41 laps of on-board systems and components checks.
"After our initial installation laps, our work proceeded smoothly," said chassis technical director Bob Bell. "As with any new car, there were some minor issues to resolve, but we did not encounter any major problems and gradually began completing some longer runs. The purpose of the day was very simple: to put miles on the new package."
Fisichella was fairly happy with the car's first run. "We had a very promising first day with the R26. I felt comfortable straight away," he commented. "The V8 engine felt very good, similar to our predictions and it was reliable for the first run. My first impression is that this is a car with a lot of potential."
David Coulthard, giving the RB2 its first full day of testing since the shakedown at Silverstone last month, was the sole representative for Red Bull and rounded off the times in seventh. The Scot only managed 31 laps after hitting electrical problems early on, and was about four seconds off Michael's top time.