Teams return to testing at Valencia

Formula One testing resumed Tuesday in Spain, and while half the teams were in Barcelona, half were at the Valencia circuit conducting preliminary testing for next year.

Juan Pablo Montoya led the nine drivers in action in Valencia for Williams. The Brazilian completed nearly 60 laps, setting a fast time of 1:13.350. Montoya was just hundredths faster than the two McLarens of Alexander Wurz and Kimi Raikkonen. F3000 contender Giorgio Pantano was fourth fastest in a second Williams-BMW, and Marc Gene tested completed nearly 15 laps for the team as well.

Sauber began its three day test in Valencia with Nick Heidfeld behind the wheel. The German was fifth fastest on the day, while testing the team's next generation gear box.

Jarno Trulli began Renault's four test in a hybrid R23. The car has the mechanical parts of the new car,including the engine and transmission, but the aerodynamic package of last year's R202. Technical Director Mike Gayscone commented, "We are quite satisfied with this first day of testing with the interim car. We didn't experience any mechanical problems and we were able to complete our programme, which was very positive. Tomorrow we will continue with engine and systems evaluation, including also some tyre work with Michelin."

Minardi gave new Russian test driver Sergei Zlobin and Frenchman Frank Montagny runs in PS01s. The outing was Zlobin's second for the team and Montagny's first in an F1 car.

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