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2001 Australian Grand Prix 
Second Friday Practice Session  

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Second Friday Practice Session Report - Results

Barrichello manages for the second time today to be the fastest in practice with a tyre blistering time of 1:28.965 close to 1 1/2 second faster than last year's pole time. We really have to wonder how much faster they will get before qualifying starts in earnest tomorrow.

Michael Schumacher was consistently second fastest (best time of 1:29.284) until he rolled his car in a gravel trap after apparently entering the corner too fast (rubble or oil on the track can not be discounted as many cars appeared to have some difficulty there). Michael seemed unharmed but the same cannot be said for his car that rolled twice. There will be little sleep for the mechanics at Ferrari tonight.

Just before the end of the session, Trulli, who was certainly not pedestrian up to that point, put in a very fast lap (1:29.267) to nudge Michael Schumacher into third place. 

As both Trulli and Frentzen finished ahead of both BARs one must wonder if the Jordan will be better in at least the early part of the season.

Coulthard and Hakkinen, in 4th and 5th place respectively were the only other drivers that managed to get below 1minute 30 seconds.

Ralf Schumacher (6th) and Heidfeld (7th) both recorded fast laps below last years pole time.

The session was not without incidents. Burti crashed into a wall, Michael Schumacher rolled and many others spent some time traversing lawns and gravel traps.

Rubens Barrichello covered the most number of laps with 25 followed by Olivier Panis with 24 and Jacques Villeneuve and Jarno Trulli with 23. Tarso Marques only managed 2 laps as his Minardi engine blew up while Luciano Burti only managed 6 as he crashed into the wall shortly after the start of the session. 

Of the drivers who are new or returning to Formula 1, Olivier Panis in the BAR was finished in 10th place ahead of his team-mate Jacques Villeneuve. Kimi Raikkonen was 11th (his team-mate Nick Heidfeld was 7th), Juan Pablo Montoya was 15th (his team-mate Ralf Schumacher was 6th), Fernando Alonso was 17th while his team-mate Tarso Marques was 22nd, Luciano Burti was 18th (his team-mate Eddie Irvine was 13th) and Enrique Bernoldi was 20th (his team-mate Jos Verstappen was 14th).

Both Benetton and Jaguar had tyre trouble and although it is far too early to draw conclusions it may mean that the Michelin tyre is finding it difficult to cope with the heat or the pace. As today was not a particularly hot day for Melbourne there is a good chance that the race will be run in hotter conditions and if these tyres are already succumbing to the heat ................

We have to be careful that we do not draw too many conclusions from today's free practice sessions as a lot of the teams would still be concentrating on sorting their cars out for the circuit. But, it certainly looks as if Button is going to have a miserable season unless Benetton can find a whole lot more pace and the advances we expected from BAR are also very circumspect.

Session 2001 2000
First Friday Practice Results Report Notes Results
Second Friday Practice Results Report Notes Results
First Saturday Practice Results Report Notes Results
Second Saturday Practice Results Report Notes Results
Qualifying Results Report Notes Results
Warm-up Results Report Notes Results
Race Results Report Notes Results

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