De la Rosa Stays in Front - Canada

McLaren test driver Pedro de la Rosa continued to set the pace at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve when he improved on his morning session-leading time to finish fastest in the second practice on Friday

De la Rosa Stays in Front - Canada

De la Rosa he showed McLaren will be the team to beat when he a time of 1:14.662 that put him 0.192 seconds ahead of Zonta, who finished second once again, with World Championship leader Fernando Alonso third.

Big crowds turned out in sizzling temperatures of 32 degrees to watch the action as McLaren prepared to fight back from Kimi Raikkonen's disappointing last-lap crash at the last race in Germany.

Alonso finished 0.714 seconds off the pace in his Renault, but he was the fastest race driver and beat lead McLaren race driver Juan Pablo Montoya, in fourth, by two tenths of a second.

Raikkonen finished fifth with Giancarlo Fisichella securing sixth in the second Renault and Jenson Button finished a satisfying seventh fastest as his BAR-Honda team continued to fight back from a two-race ban earlier in the season.

Button's Japanese teammate Takuma Sato backed him up in eighth place while German Ralf Schumacher, who has been on pole position here for the last two years, had to settle for ninth in his Toyota.

Brazilian Rubens Barrichello put his Ferrari into tenth place but German World Champion Michael Schumacher, who has won the race here for the last three years, could only manage the 16th fastest time.

De la Rosa was out early to post a time of 1:18.907 as the session began in temperatures of 31 degrees and he quickly bettered his own time as Zonta slotted into second but the times were set to fall significantly before the end.

Alonso, on his first lap of the weekend, immediately went top but Zonta soon improved to take the place as times tumbled early in the session with 14 cars out on track in the first ten minutes.

With half the session gone de la Rosa was on top having improved by more than three seconds to set a time of 1:15.280 to put him six tenths ahead of Renault driver Fisichella before Raikkonen slotted into second.

Montoya then moved up to second but de la Rosa went faster still to extend the gap to his teammate to almost one second as Zonta slotted into third with all drivers setting a time by the halfway point.

Alonso jumped into second with ten minutes remaining, 0.714 seconds slower than de la Rosa, but Zonta then moved back into second to finish just behind de la Rosa for the second time in the day.

Narain Karthikeyan pushed too hard once and spun twice in the session, at the start and the end, and American Scott Speed spun at turn four as he continued his Grand Prix debut in the third driver role with Red Bull Racing.

Villeneuve was one of several drivers who cut across the chicane as he pushed to improve his fastest lap time while Trulli had a trip off line at turn nine and Monteiro went off harmlessly at turn four.

Pos  Driver        Team                  Time                  Laps
 1.  de la Rosa    McLaren-Mercedes  (M)  1:14.662               30
 2.  Zonta         Toyota            (M)  1:14.858  +    0.196   33
 3.  Alonso        Renault           (M)  1:15.376  +    0.714   33
 4.  Montoya       McLaren-Mercedes  (M)  1:15.625  +    0.963   18
 5.  Raikkonen     McLaren-Mercedes  (M)  1:15.679  +    1.017   21
 6.  Fisichella    Renault           (M)  1:15.846  +    1.184   32
 7.  Button        BAR-Honda         (M)  1:16.190  +    1.528   32
 8.  Sato          BAR-Honda         (M)  1:16.313  +    1.651   32
 9.  R.Schumacher  Toyota            (M)  1:16.364  +    1.702   23
10.  Barrichello   Ferrari           (B)  1:16.459  +    1.797   23
11.  Trulli        Toyota            (M)  1:16.638  +    1.976   26
12.  Webber        Williams-BMW      (M)  1:16.661  +    1.999   30
13.  Villeneuve    Sauber-Petronas   (M)  1:16.718  +    2.056   23
14.  Massa         Sauber-Petronas   (M)  1:16.727  +    2.065   29
15.  Heidfeld      Williams-BMW      (M)  1:16.826  +    2.164   26
16.  M.Schumacher  Ferrari           (B)  1:17.200  +    2.538   26
17.  Coulthard     Red Bull-Cosworth (M)  1:17.299  +    2.637   27
18.  Klien         Red Bull-Cosworth (M)  1:17.922  +    3.260   26
19.  Friesacher    Minardi-Cosworth  (B)  1:18.115  +    3.453   25
20.  Karthikeyan   Jordan-Toyota     (B)  1:18.234  +    3.572   28
21.  Albers        Minardi-Cosworth  (B)  1:18.463  +    3.801   22
22.  Monteiro      Jordan-Toyota     (B)  1:19.186  +    4.524   30
23.  Speed         Red Bull-Cosworth (M)  1:19.270  +    4.608   15

All timing unofficial
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