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Anthony tops the timesheets in Spain


A solid opening day leaves the Honda Racing F1 Team feeling optimistic for the remainder of the weekend.

The Honda Racing F1 Team took to the track in Barcelona today to begin its preparations for the Spanish Grand Prix. As is usual for the team during Friday practice, third driver Anthony Davidson did the bulk of the mileage.

The track was still damp when the morning session kicked off, with a dry line only appearing after 20 minutes. Anthony then took to the track and completed 24 laps while honing the set-up of his RA106. His lap times improved steadily throughout the session and he set the fifth fastest time.

Neither Jenson Button nor Rubens Barrichello completed a flying lap during the morning. Both drivers elected to preserve their cars and engines for Saturday and Sunday, and they completed just one installation lap each.

By the start of the afternoon session, the ambient and track temperatures had increased to 22 and 44 degrees respectively. Anthony took to the track immediately and quickly found a rhythm around the 2.875-mile track. He set the fastest lap of the session, a 1:16.533s, during the course of his 38 laps.

Jenson and Rubens were eighth and ninth fastest in session two, separated by just 0.003s. They completed 28 laps between them and made steady progress with their car set-ups.

Both race drivers know the Circuit de Catalunya well from winter testing and they hope that its fast, sweeping nature will play to the strengths of the RA106 during the 66-lap race on Sunday.

“It feels really good to be back at the top of the timesheets. The car feels a lot better than it did in the first session but we still have a lot of work to do to get the best out of it for the race. For me, tyre evaluation was the name of the game. Our work today has paid off and we have some interesting results to look through tonight. A good start to the weekend I’d say.”

“It was very windy out there today and it’s difficult to get a good balance in those conditions. There was also a lot of traffic which affected pretty much every lap. It’s always very different to the test because the conditions change from day to day but the basic car balance is okay. There are a few things we need to work on tonight but generally I’m pleased with the start we’ve made to the weekend.”

“We’ve had a pretty straightforward day today. We are still looking for our real race pace and that’s what I focused on today because we know the car is quick in qualifying. It’s looking good so far but we still have a lot of work to do to prepare for tomorrow and Sunday.”

Warm and sunny
Air: 19-24°C | Track: 20-43°C

1 Felipe Massa (Ferrari) 1:15.796
2 Michael Schumacher (Ferrari) 1:16.099
3 Alexander Wurz (Williams-Cosworth) 1:16.125
4 Robert Kubica (Sauber-BMW) 1:16.628
5 Anthony Davidson (Honda Racing F1 Team) 1:16.961
6 Robert Doornbos (RBR-Ferrari) 1:17.424
7 Neel Jani (STR-Cosworth) 1:19.720
8 Giorgio Mondini (MF1-Toyota) 1:20.708
9 Takuma Sato (Super Aguri-Honda) 1:20.744
10 Franck Montagny (Super Aguri-Honda) No Time
11 Scott Speed (STR-Cosworth) No Time
12 Mark Webber (Williams-Cosworth) No Time
13 Jarno Trulli (Toyota) No Time
14 Christijan Albers (MF1-Toyota) No Time
15 Nico Rosberg (Williams-Cosworth) No Time
16 Tiago Monteiro (MF1-Toyota) No Time
17 Ralf Schumacher (Toyota) No Time
18 Jenson Button (Honda Racing F1 Team) No Time
19 Vitantonio Liuzzi (STR-Cosworth) No Time
20 Nick Heidfeld (Sauber-BMW) No Time
21 Juan Pablo Montoya (McLaren-Mercedes) No Time
22 Jacques Villeneuve (Sauber-BMW) No Time
23 David Coulthard (RBR-Ferrari) No Time
24 Christian Klien (RBR-Ferrari) No Time
25 Rubens Barrichello (Honda Racing F1 Team) No Time
26 Fernando Alonso (Renault) No Time
27 Giancarlo Fisichella (Renault) No Time
28 Kimi Räikkönen (McLaren-Mercedes) No Time

1 Anthony Davidson (Honda Racing F1 Team) 1:16.533
2 Robert Doornbos (RBR-Ferrari) 1:16.824
3 Fernando Alonso (Renault) 1:16.860
4 Alexander Wurz (Williams-Cosworth) 1:17.075
5 Christian Klien (RBR-Ferrari) 1:17.086
6 Michael Schumacher (Ferrari) 1:17.100
7 Giancarlo Fisichella (Renault) 1:17.291
8 Jenson Button (Honda Racing F1 Team) 1:17.414
9 Rubens Barrichello (Honda Racing F1 Team) 1:17.417
10 Ralf Schumacher (Toyota) 1:17.506
11 Jarno Trulli (Toyota) 1:17.610
12 Nick Heidfeld (Sauber-BMW) 1:17.622
13 Robert Kubica (Sauber-BMW) 1:17.844
14 Mark Webber (Williams-Cosworth) 1:17.908
15 Kimi Räikkönen (McLaren-Mercedes) 1:17.933
16 Jacques Villeneuve (Sauber-BMW) 1:18.007
17 Felipe Massa (Ferrari) 1:18.223
18 Juan Pablo Montoya (McLaren-Mercedes) 1:18.261
19 Nico Rosberg (Williams-Cosworth) 1:18.283
20 David Coulthard (RBR-Ferrari) 1:18.410
21 Neel Jani (STR-Cosworth) 1:18.774
22 Giorgio Mondini (MF1-Toyota) 1:18.910
23 Scott Speed (STR-Cosworth) 1:19.257
24 Vitantonio Liuzzi (STR-Cosworth) 1:19.334
25 Christijan Albers (MF1-Toyota) 1:19.358
26 Takuma Sato (Super Aguri-Honda) 1:19.616
27 Tiago Monteiro (MF1-Toyota) 1:20.311
28 Franck Montagny (Super Aguri-Honda) 1:22.222
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