Williams pushes ahead

WILLIAMS kept the pressure on the opposition in testing at Silverstone last week when it outran the opposition both in terms of mileage and speed. The three-day test began in warm and dry conditions on Wednesday but the weather became overcast towards the end of the week.

The team did a total of 280 laps of the track - four and a half race distances - with test driver Jean-Christophe Boullion setting the fastest time of 1m26.75s during his 117 laps. The Frenchman and Damon Hill both did three days of running (Hill completing 118 laps) while Jacques Villeneuve did only 45 laps on Friday. Hill was fourth fastest and Villeneuve fifth.

Second quickest was Mika Hakkinen in his McLaren-Mercedes - although it is doubtful that this is very significant; Mika did manage to complete 177 laps in the three days. His best lap was one hundredths slower than Boullion's best.

Third quickest in the test was Gerhard Berger who did all three days for Benetton, completing 115 laps. Jean Alesi showed up to run on the final two days completing 97 laps. Gerhard concentrated on aerodynamic work and R&D work to set a best of 1m27.45s while Alesi tested an uprated Renault engine to record a best of 1m28.86s.

The Jordan-Peugeot team was hammering around for three days with Martin Brundle completing 172 laps by himself and a best lap of 1m28.58s. Martin was testing for Goodyear and working on aerodynamics.

On Friday, Tyrrell and Arrows showed up with Mika Salo and Ukyo Katayama both running for Tyrrell and Jos Verstappen doing some Bridgestone tire testing work for the latter.

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