Rain slows testing at Valencia

THE teams testing at the Valencia circuit on Thursday were able to get in half a day's worth of dry testing before the skies opened up around lunchtime.

David Coulthard joined teammate Kimi Raikkonen Thursday and was the quickest man on the Spanish circuit by more than 1.5 seconds. The Scot's quickest lap, put in before the rain started to fall, was about two seconds faster than Raikkonen's fastest, but the times are not comparable, as the two were carrying out different testing programs.

Juan Pablo Montoya was the second fastest man on the track Thursday morning. Montoya took over testing duties for the Williams-BMW team from test driver Antonio Pizzonia, who worked at the Spanish circuit on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Jarno Trulli and Fernando Alonso continued their testing programs for Renault. Trulli tested tires for Michelin before the rain came, and Alonso concentrated on the R202's traction control system. The Renault engines were routinely changed during lunch, and Trulli decided to merely shake down his car for Friday, while Alonso continued his program in the rain.

Nick Heidfeld wrapped up Sauber's Valencia test, which Felipe Massa started on Tuesday and Wednesday. The German completed a massive 96 laps, and was the fastest driver after the rain started to fall. The team spent their three day program working on mechanical setups in order to find more traction out of slow corners.

The Jaguar duo of Pedro De la Rosa and Eddie Irvine also continued their programs, which started Wednesday. The teammates continued to work on the car's balance, as the positive aerodynamic effects of the team's new wind tunnel are not expected to be felt for weeks.

VALENCIA TEST - THURSDAY, 2 MAY 2002

POS

DRIVER ENTRANT TIME

1.

DAVID COULTHARD McLaren-Mercedes 1:10.811

2.

JUAN PABLO MONTOYA Williams-BMW 1:12.318

3.

JARNO TRULLI Renault 1:12.401

4.

KIMI RAIKKONEN McLaren-Mercedes 1:12.670

5.

FERNANDO ALONSO Renault 1:12.710

6.

NICK HEIDFELD Sauber-Petronas 1:13.147

7.

PEDRO DE LA ROSA Jaguar-Cosworth 1:13.206

8.

EDDIE IRVINE Jaguar-Cosworth 1:14.292

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