NOVEMBER 10, 2002
Winter testing preparations underway
Most of the teams are preparing for the first winter testing, allowed in late November. Some new drivers are expected to test with their teams over the coming months, including newly crowned CART champion Cristiano da Matta for Toyota.
Da Matta and teammate Olivier Panis will kick off testing for Toyota on November 26th in Barcelona. The team will run an interim TF102 fitted with the new motor and gearbox.
Minardi is set to test Cosworth powerplants later this month. Despite the fact that there has been no official announcement regarding the team's use of Cosworth power next year, the team will test a PS01 fitted with the 2001 spec Cosworth at Valencia from November 26th to the 28th. Frenchman Frank Montagny and Russian Sergie Zlobin will test the car, but there has been no official announcement about who will drive for the team in 2003.
McLaren will test an interim MP4-17 with Kimi Raikkonen, David Coulthard and Alexander Wurz at Valencia November 26th through the 28th. Sauber will also be at Valencia testing with Nick Heidfeld. Heinz Harald Frentzen will begin testing for Sauber December 5th in Jerez.
Renault will test an interim car and a current R202 with Jarno Trulli and new driver Fernando Alonso in Valencia before heading to Barcelona and Jerez in early December.
Ferrari will no doubt begin testing at its Fiorano circuit with Luca Badoer, but it will be interesting to see if Luciano Burti or Felipe Massa are seen behind the wheel as well. Recent reports have linked Massa to a test drive position with the team, replacing Burti, but Burti has denied the reports. The team has not made an announcement.
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