Barca 3: DC top as Klien shunts
|By autosport.com staff
||Thursday, January 20th 2005, 16:55 GMT
David Coulthard gave Red Bull Racing something to smile about during the third day of testing at Barcelona in Spain on Thursday – after the team's earlier running had been marred by a major accident for team-mate Christian Klien.
Just after lunchtime, Klien suffered a brake failure at 200mph going into the first corner of the Circuit de Catalunya. The Austrian, who is fighting with Vitantonio Liuzzi over the second seat at RBR, tried to flick the car into a spin to scrub off some speed but slammed into the barriers after spinning through a full 360-degrees.
After climbing out of the car unaided, Klien told autosport.com: "When I braked for the first corner there was nothing there and my brake pedal went straight to the floor.
"I turned the wheel to try to slow the car down but even when I went into the gravel the car was still turning. Eventually it turned all the way around and I went headfirst into the barriers. It was not nice – especially at 200mph!
"I must say I was lucky and in fact the car is not as badly damaged as I was expecting."
Coulthard's best lap, which came despite a spin earlier in the day, was enough to outpace Williams's Antonio Pizzonia, who put in a psychologically important lap-time to edge out Nick Heidfeld – his rival for the seat alongside Mark Webber.
After mechanical problems had robbed Pizzonia of his chance to impress at Jerez in Spain last week, Williams finally allowed him some new rubber in the final hour of the day to show what he could do. With falling track temperatures making it ideal conditions for fast lap-times, Pizzonia duly edged Heidfeld by seven tenths of a second.
Toyota test driver Olivier Panis marked his return to the cockpit in the TF104B with the fourth fastest time as the Cologne-based team worked on a tyre and set-up programme. The only blot on the team's performance was a brief spin by Ralf Schumacher who went off at the Nissan corner, but without damaging the car.
Rubens Barrichello suffered a rare engine problem in the updated F2004 and lost a lot of track time while the team fitted a new engine. His focus was on tyres, while at Fiorano in Italy Ferrari test driver Andrea Bertolini was trying out new aerodynamic solutions that may feature on the F2004B that will start the season.
Leading times from Barcelona test Day 3 (January 20, 2005)
1, David Coulthard (Red Bull Racing), 1m16.134s, 64 laps
2, Antonio Pizzonia (Williams), 1m16.230s, 39 laps
3, Nick Heidfeld (Williams), 1m16.954s, 44 laps
4, Olivier Panis (Toyota), 1m17.019s, 153 laps
5, Christian Klien (Red Bull Racing), 1m17.035s, 96 laps
6, Jarno Trulli (Toyota), 1m17.335s, 77 laps
7, Rubens Barrichello (Ferrari), 1m17.400s, 55 laps
8, Ralf Schumacher (Toyota), 1m18.063s, 66 laps