Alonso Goes Fastest at Jerez - Day Two

Spaniard Fernando Alonso was the quickest driver on the second day of testing at the Jerez circuit, where four Formula One teams are working ahead of next week's European Grand Prix.

Alonso Goes Fastest at Jerez - Day Two

Spaniard Fernando Alonso was the quickest driver on the second day of testing at the Jerez circuit, where four Formula One teams are working ahead of next week's European Grand Prix.

Alonso, whose Renault team joined the Jerez test today after missing the first day, finished on top of the times after a massive 103 laps around the Spanish circuit. The young driver, at the wheel of the R23 chassis, concentrated on tyre testing for the French Grand Prix, also carrying out engine and suspension work.

"We've worked towards the Magny Cours race, where the tarmac is very similar to Jerez's," said Alonso at the end of the day. "We've covered 103 laps, which is very important because it's not easy to complete so many laps here. We only had one small problem with the engine this morning, but it was quickly solved."

Brazilian Toyota driver Cristiano da Matta was second fastest with the only car from the Japanese squad on track in Spain. Da Matta, who went off the track at the Peluqui corner during the session, completed 88 laps and finished ahead of McLaren's Kimi Raikkonen.

The Finn driver continued working with the new MP4-18 chassis, and he was the only driver from the Woking-based team using the new car after Austrian test Alexander Wurz crashed the second chassis yesterday. Raikkonen completed only 20 laps and was hit by a gearbox problem that hampered his progress.

McLaren were in action with their two racing drivers, with Scot David Coulthard replacing Pedro de la Rosa at the wheel of the MP4-17D. Coulthard finished at the bottom of the times behind Spaniard Marc Gene, who was again working for the Williams team.

Testing at Jerez continues tomorrow.

Today's times:

Pos Driver Team-Engine Tyres Time Laps 1. Alonso Renault (M) 1:20.423 103 2. da Matta Toyota (M) 1:20.646 88 3. Raikkonen McLaren-Mercedes (M) 1:20.677 20 4. Gene Williams-BMW (M) 1:21.171 62 5. Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes (M) 1:21.173 80 All Timing Unofficial

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