Coulthard Quickest Again at Barcelona - Day Four

Scot David Coulthard and his McLaren team continued to prove untouchable on the fourth day of testing at the Barcelona circuit in Northern Spain.

Coulthard Quickest Again at Barcelona - Day Four

Scot David Coulthard and his McLaren team continued to prove untouchable on the fourth day of testing at the Barcelona circuit in Northern Spain.

Coulthard broke the track record on Tuesday and dominated the session again on Wednesday, when McLaren occupied the top three positions.

Today the Scot and his Woking-based outfit were again on top form, with Coulthard finishing the session nearly seven tenths of a second ahead of his teammate Kimi Raikkonen as both men continued to work on the development of the Michelin-shod MP4-17.

Juan Pablo Montoya, at the wheel of the Williams FW24 03 chassis, was third quickest less then two tenths behind Raikkonen, the Colombian still concentrating on the development of components for the new FW25.

"For the fourth consecutive morning we have had minus temperatures on the track for the installation lap, today we had a frosty track due to the high humidity," said Williams's test team manager Tim Newton. "The day did warm up quicker than previously and the temperature soon stabilised at 12°C.

"We continued the engine programme with the P83 driven by Marc and established some useful mileage. Juan was driving a FW24 03 and ran tyres for Michelin and other systems work. Aside from a couple of red flags on the circuit, it was a routine day and we were pleased with the data collected."

Toyota driver Olivier Panis was unable to keep the top spot after setting the fastest time in the morning, the Frenchman sliding down to fourth position with the TF103. Teammate Cristiano da Matta enjoyed a good session today and finished right behind Panis with the old TF102B.

"We finished this week's test on a very promising note with the new car," said Panis. "I feel it is competitive and it proved to be responsive to changes. We obviously have room for improvement during the next tests and have identified some good directions of work. I am very happy with the work done."

Da Matta added: "I am overall very pleased with this test. Although Tuesday was a bad day for me, Wednesday was excellent and today was good as well. I managed a great deal of laps in total and we could test some components that will be used on the TF103 in the near future. I really look forward to having my first ride in the new car next week!"

Briton Anthony Davidson continued to put the new BAR 005 through its paces after teammate Jenson Button completed the first laps with it yesterday. Davidson completed only 26 laps and finished the session in eighth place ahead of Spaniard Fernando Alonso in the fastest of the Renaults.

Scot Allan McNish was also on track, but he only completed a short shakedown of the R202, while Jarno Trulli took over the car for the afternoon, and focused on suspension evaluation as well tyre testing for Michelin.

"A more productive day's testing today as Fernando conducted tyre tests for Michelin in the hybrid car and Jarno continued suspension evaluation in last year's R202," said Renault's Mike Gascoyne.

Testing at Barcelona will conclude tomorrow.

Today's times:

Pos Driver Team-Engine Tyres Time Laps 1. Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes (M) 1:15.382 53 2. Raikkonen McLaren-Mercedes (M) 1:16.007 66 3. Montoya Williams-BMW (M) 1:16.151 65 4. Panis Toyota (M) 1:16.386 48 5. Da Matta Toyota (M) 1:17.008 58 6. Wurz McLaren-Mercedes (M) 1:17.480 94 7. Gene Williams-BMW (M) 1:17.587 71 8. Davidson BAR-Honda (B) 1:17.628 26 9. Alonso Renault (M) 1:17.865 57 10. Pizzonia Jaguar-Cosworth (M) 1:18.817 50 11. Trulli Renault (M) 1:20.778 77 All Timing Unofficial

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