Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Rain disrupts Jerez test

Monday 2nd March 2009

On a rain-soaked day in Portugal, Toyota and BMW stole the show as testing continued in Jerez on Monday.

With heavy rain falling throughout the session, it was the Toyota of Timo Glock which finished the day at the head of the timesheets courtesy of his lap of 1:30.979. While it is never wise to read too much in to the times set during testing, especially one that is run in the wet, Monday's result will only add to the growing expectation that the moneybags of Cologne are finally set to achieve their long overdue breakthrough this season.

Glock's running, though, wasn't without problems as the Toyota driver found himself getting a lift back to the pits after his TF109 in the gravel. But despite his off, Glock was happy with how his day panned out.

"It tends to be difficult to carry out meaningful testing when there is so much rain," said Glock. "The conditions made things tricky again today but at least it stayed consistently wet so we were able to go through some work on set-up and tyres.

"It also gave me a chance to get used to pushing the TF109 in these conditions and we put more mileage on the car. It felt good again, just like in Portugal last month, so I'm happy with the day."

Robert Kubica was second-fastest with a 1:31.327 despite completing the third lowest number of laps - the result of a water-activated false electrical alarm which caused Kubica to stop on the track.

The BMW driver also complained about the difficulties of driving in the wet: "Because of the reduced downforce, the F1.09's behaviour in wet conditions is quite different to last year's car. There's less grip, which makes the car slide more."

Williams' Nico Rosberg was third quickest, followed by Giancarlo Fisichella's Force India, who once again found himself at the bottom of the list for number of laps completed - a concern for the team who need to get in as much running as possible after a late debut of the VJM02.

McLaren's Heikki Kovaleinen and Renault's Nelson Piquet were routed to the bottom of the timesheets.

Ferrari were also present at the circuit but opted not to run in the rain.

1. T Glock Toyota 1:30.979
2. R. Kubica BMW 1:31.327
3. N. Rosberg Williams 1:31.451
4. G. Fisichella Force India 1:31.547
5. S. Vettel Red Bull 1:32.220
6. H. Kovaleinen McLaren 1:33.371
7. N. Piquet Renault 1:33.476

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