Japanese GP 2009
OCTOBER 3, 2009
Practice 3 Report - Truly Toyota?
Jarno Trulli set the fastest time of the morning session on Saturday at Suzuka, giving Toyota something to get excited about. There were, inevitably, questions about whether this is a true picture of the competitiveness of the team as there is something of a tradition of Japanese manufacturers pulling PR stunts in Japan.
Backing up this theory was the fact that Sebastien Buemi's Toro Rosso was second fastest in the session, which seemed to suggest that the times ought not be taken too seriously. The reality these days is that one cannot really trust any session until qualifying begins and even then the Q3 performance is dependent entirely on fuel loads. It will be nice next year to go back to a system which tells us the real state of affairs.
For the record, Nico Rosberg was third quickest for Williams, the German driver rather keen to make up for his blunder in Singapore. Sebastian Vettel was fourth and he is keen to get a good result in Japan to put himself back into the running in the World Championship. Also up there was Kimi Raikkonen, Adrian Sutil, Rubens Barrichello, Heikki Kovalainen and Jenson Button. Fernando Alonso was down in 13th, Lewis Hamilton 16th, Robert Kubica 17th and Giancarlo Fisichella 18th, while Mark Webber went off and ended up 19th.