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Michael goes for reliability

AFTER completing the first decent runs for the new F399 in Barcelona over the weekend, the Ferrari team went into action last week at Mugello, the Ferrari testing facility in the hills above Florence. Michael Schumacher used the only available F399 chassis for three days, leaving Eddie Irvine to waste his time with 100 laps at the wheel of an old F300. It was only on Saturday that Schumacher flew off and let Irvine have his first taste of the new car.

During his three days in action Schumacher concentrated on doing long-distance reliability work and completed a total of 235 laps of the track - nearly 700 miles of running. This meant that when he handed the car over to Irvine he had completed a total of 1,450 miles with the new car. His best lap was a 1m26.704s. Irvine completed 45 laps in the new car on Saturday, with a best lap of 1m27.804s.

Minardi was also in action at Mugello running Luca Badoer, Marc Gene and Gastone Mazzacane during its three days of running. Badoer set the fastest time with a 1m28.813s in the course of his 120 laps. Gene completed 55 laps over two days and recorded a best of 1m31.204s while Mazzacane did a six lap shakedown run.

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