Franchitti dials into Formula 1

Dario Franchitti closed to within a second of Jaguar test driver Luciano Burti as the Scot continued to dial himself into Formula 1 at Silverstone today. But McLaren dominated day one of the three-day test

Franchitti dials into Formula 1

Franchitti, who is expected to make the switch from Champ Cars to F1 with Jaguar next season, ran 36 laps in his first official test for the team, finishing the day with a fastest time of 1m28.41s, compared to Burti's 1m27.40s set this morning.

"He took it nice and steadily and whittled his times down progressively as the day went on," said a team insider. "Considering this morning was the faster session for most of the guys out there, he's done well. I think we're all pretty impressed, but I expect you'll see the proper times coming tomorrow."

Franchitti's last outing in a Formula 1 car was a McLaren-Mercedes at Jerez in 1996, but today was his first taste of a car with grooved tyres. He will continue testing tomorrow (Wednesday) and is scheduled to give an official press conference after the morning session.

Burti completed 49 laps, but his day was cut short by a 100mph-plus accident at Stowe corner. The impact left his R1 seriously damaged, destroying everything on the car's left side, but the Brazilian was uninjured and will continue testing tomorrow.

Jaguar team-leader Eddie Irvine was scheduled to undergo further tests in London today to ascertain the cause of the stomach pains that forced him to pull out of last weekend's Austrian Grand Prix, and Burti remains on standby to take part in his second Grand Prix in Germany should a problem be diagnosed.

Fastest overall were McLaren's Olivier Panis and David Coulthard, both setting their times in the cooler morning session. Ricardo Zonta was third overall, despite throttle sensor problems that left him stranded out on the circuit late in the afternoon session.

Zonta is scheduled to have three wisdom teeth removed tomorrow and will be replaced by the team's English test driver Darren Manning.

Giancarlo Fisichella's Benetton leapt to fourth overall after failing to set a time this morning with gearbox problems, with Mika Salo fifth for Sauber, ahead of Jordan's Jarno Trulli.

Trulli had an EJ10 and and EJ10B chassis at his disposal and spent the day on back-to-back comparisons, setting his fastest time in the B-spec car. Jordan is set to debut the B-spec chassis, which boasts significant aerodynamic modifications, at Hockenheim.

Ralf Schumacher's Williams-BMW was 11th and last after a day of electronics problems, but the Williams testing programme will be bolstered by the arrival of Jenson Button for day two of the test tomorrow.

The test is scheduled to end at lunchtime on Thursday.



1 Olivier Panis, McLaren-Mercedes, 1m25.20s (63 laps; time set AM)
2 David Coulthard, McLaren-Mercedes, 1m25.63s (28; AM)
3 Ricardo Zonta, BAR-Honda, 1m26.66s (41; PM)
4 Giancarlo Fisichella, Benetton-Playlife, 1m 26.79s (25; PM)
5 Mika Salo, Sauber-Petronas, 1m26.86s (47; PM)
6 Jarno Trulli, Jordan-Mugen Honda, 1m26.88s (43: AM)
7 Luciano Burti, Jaguar, 1m27.40s (49; AM)
8 Alex Wurz, Benetton-Playlife, 1m27.57s (34; PM)
9 Patrick Lemarie, BAR-Honda, 1m27.91s (37; PM)
10 Dario Franchitti, Jaguar, 1m28.41s (36; PM)
11 Ralf Schumacher, Williams-BMW, 1m28.94 (46; PM)

shares
comments
Silverstone: Franchitti begins Jaguar test

Previous article

Silverstone: Franchitti begins Jaguar test

Next article

Colin Jackson Q&A

Colin Jackson Q&A
Load comments
The drivers that need to strike gold before F1's summer break Plus

The drivers that need to strike gold before F1's summer break

OPINION: Formula 1 is about to break up for summer 2021, with the title battles finely poised. But it’s not just the latest round of Max Verstappen vs Lewis Hamilton that will be worth watching this weekend in Hungary, as plenty of drivers are eying big results to change the stories of their seasons so far

How Lotus F1 uncovered, then squandered its last ‘unfair advantage’ Plus

How Lotus F1 uncovered, then squandered its last ‘unfair advantage’

Cast in the mould of its founder Colin Chapman, Lotus was powerful and daring but 
flawed – as it proved through further soaring peaks and painful troughs into the 1980s. DAMIEN SMITH examines a game-changing era

Formula 1
Jul 27, 2021
The core problems Yas Marina’s long-awaited tweaks won't address Plus

The core problems Yas Marina’s long-awaited tweaks won't address

OPINION: Changes to the layout of Abu Dhabi’s circuit aim to reverse the trend of insipid Formula 1 races there - the promoter has even described one of the new corners as “iconic”. And that, argues STUART CODLING, is one of this venue’s abiding failings

Formula 1
Jul 26, 2021
How Ferrari offered Britain's next F1 prospect what Red Bull couldn't Plus

How Ferrari offered Britain's next F1 prospect what Red Bull couldn't

Last year's Formula 2 runner-up Callum Ilott could be on his way to becoming the first Briton to contest a grand prix in an Alfa Romeo since Reg Parnell in 1950. But, says OLEG KARPOV, the Ferrari Driver Academy protege is having to temper his ambition at the moment – outwardly at least…

Formula 1
Jul 25, 2021
The signs that point to F1's rude health Plus

The signs that point to F1's rude health

OPINION: Formula 1's calendar might still be facing disruption as the pandemic affects travel but, says MARK GALLAGHER, the business itself is fundamentally strong thanks to the epic rivalry taking place on track and the consistent arrival of new sponsors

Formula 1
Jul 24, 2021
The unexpected benefit of F1’s sprint race repeat Plus

The unexpected benefit of F1’s sprint race repeat

OPINION: Formula 1's sprint race trial at Silverstone drew mixed feedback on Saturday, but there remained the true test of how it would impact Sunday's Grand Prix. While fans were busy marvelling at Fernando Alonso's progress, a key lesson was being learned that would directly contribute to the dramatic lap one clash at Copse the following day

Formula 1
Jul 22, 2021
The off-track considerations that led to F1’s Hamilton/Verstappen Silverstone shunt Plus

The off-track considerations that led to F1’s Hamilton/Verstappen Silverstone shunt

OPINION: Formula 1’s 2021 title fight turned ugly last weekend when Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton collided at the start of the British Grand Prix. Verstappen thankfully walked away unharmed, but this had been a clash long-since coming

Formula 1
Jul 21, 2021
Will 2022's all-new cars look like F1's concept model? Plus

Will 2022's all-new cars look like F1's concept model?

Formula 1 provided its clearest example yet of what the 2022 cars are set to look like when it presented a full-scale concept to the world during the build-up to last weekend’s British Grand Prix. Underneath the special shiny livery was a design that hinted at the future, but teams will be digging into key areas that may reap differing results

Formula 1
Jul 20, 2021