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The BAR-Honda runs

THE first BAR-Honda 02 ran for the first time last week at Silverstone and to the relief of all concerned the new car completed 35 laps without a problem. The test, which took place in cool and blustery conditions, proved very little but it gave the team a much-needed boost and there were a large group of Honda personnel present as Jacques Villeneuve completed the shakedown runs. The car is due to reappear in testing this week in Jerez and there will then be a better indication of its level of competitiveness.

Honda says that the new RA000E V10 engine produces "in excess of 800 bhp" and if this is the case it will be on a par with the top engines in 1999.

Among those watching the test was Takefumi Hosaka, the head of the Honda F1 project, and Kazutoshi Nishizawa the technical director of Honda R&D.

"It was nice to have everything working perfectly," said Jacques Villeneuve.

We hear that plans for large number of Japanese media to be present for the test were cancelled at the last minute as BAR did not want any coverage of the event - a notable change in policy from the usually publicity-crazed team.

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