Ferrari waits on the weather

Rain of the likes that is rarely seen at Fiorano was the main subject of discussion in the Ferrari garage on Friday. "Rain was the main factor today" said sporting director Jean Todt, but despite the conditions the Scuderia came good. Rubens Barrichello made a sterling effort to take second, while Michael Schumacher put an out-lap spin behind him to take fifth, albeit 2.4s off Mark Webber, the final pacesetter

Ferrari waits on the weather

In the event the weather might still have a thing or two to say. Starting first or last could go either way on Saturday. "In theory our position is an advantage, but it all hangs on the weather," said Todt. "Today's grid reflects the spirit of the new regulations, which are designed to increase the level of unpredictability."

But it is a level of unpredictability that is a step too far for Ross Brawn. I think the regulation which says we are only allowed to have one type of wet tyre should be reconsidered," he said, "because it compromises safety."

Brazil's ill-starred son, at least in Brazil, Rubens Barrichello had a typically emotional return to his home event, but should sleep well enough tonight after his qualifying performance. "This has been quite a tricky day with plenty of emotions," he said. "This morning we had too much rain for the tyres we have here. This afternoon the track was much better. I enjoyed myself and am happy with my position...even if I was surprised that Webber beat me."

Michael Schumacher blamed aquaplaning for his embarrassing out-lap incident, but only saw the weather as a problem if the rain doesn't let up before Sunday. "The rain meant that track conditions were difficult, but not unacceptable," he said. "Tomorrow I will do my out-lap in the final part of the session. Whether or not that will be an advantage we will only know during qualifying, given the uncertainty over the weather. I hope we can run in the dry tomorrow morning so that we can use free practice to prepare the car for Sunday's race."

Weather forecasts have Saturday drier than Friday with more showers due on Sunday.

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