Free practice 4: Schuey fastest...again

Status Quo was maintained at the end of the final free practice session before qualifying begins for Sunday's Italian Grand Prix with McLaren-Mercedes and Ferrari occupying the top four slots

Free practice 4: Schuey fastest...again

Michael Schumacher went fastest and was the only driver to dip into the 1m23s bracket while World Championship leader Mika Hakkinen was a close second, setting his time early in the session leapfrogging from eighth spot. Rubens Barrichello continued with flashes of pace and set the overall fastest first section time so far this weekend, but could not string together a lap and wound up third ahead of David Coulthard in fourth.

Jenson Button's pace of the first session was not replicated in the second and while most of the top ten times markedly improved, Button's did not and as such the young Brit dropped to sixth. Williams-BMW team mate Ralf Schumacher was one such improvement and stayed fifth from the first session but moved ahead of the young Brit.

Giancarlo Fisichella remained just outside the top six in his Benetton, maintaining some desperately-needed momentum for the team. The same could not be said of Alex Wurz whose contract with the team has not been renewed for next year. The Austrian finished the session in last place and only completed a handful of laps throughout the morning as his B200 came to a halt at the side of the track during both sessions.

Jordan-Mugen Honda experienced an equally torrid morning as Jarno Trulli had only completed four laps midway through the second session. Once out on the track the Italian moved up from last to first 17th and then 12th where he remained till the chequered flag. Meanwhile team mate Frentzen had an off in the first session putting his EJ10 into the barrier at Parabolica. The accident destroyed the Jordan's front-left suspension and prevented the German from making it back onto the track in the second session.

The BAR-Hondas ran in formation as Jacques Villeneuve and Ricardo Zonta finished eighth and ninth with Villeneuve unusually behind his Brazilian team mate. Eddie Irvine's Jaguar looked to be a handful as the Irishman repeatedly missed the all-new Rettifilo chicane. Irvine managed to put the R1 into the top 10 before coasting back to the pits with a mechanical problem a the end of the session.

Depsite the early promise of the Arrows team during Friday's sessions, Pedro de la Rosa and Jos Verstappen could only manage 17th and 18th respectively.

Ferrari have topped every session so far this weekend and look strong going into qualifying. Barrichello and particularly championship contender Schumacher will both be hoping to stay ahead of the McLarens on home soil and in front of the adoring Tifosi.

For full practice session 4 results, click here.

shares
comments
Free practice 3: Schumacher on top as Button flies

Previous article

Free practice 3: Schumacher on top as Button flies

Next article

Friday press conference

Friday press conference
Load comments
The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers Plus

The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers

Michael Schumacher is the latest sporting superstar to get the ‘Netflix treatment’, with a special documentary film airing on the US streaming giant’s platform this month. DAMIEN SMITH has the inside track on how the filmmakers gained access to tell the human story behind one of Formula 1’s most publicity-shy champions - while the man himself, for obvious reasons, is in absentia… 

The times that suggest Verstappen should be confident of F1 Russian GP recovery Plus

The times that suggest Verstappen should be confident of F1 Russian GP recovery

For the second race in a row, Mercedes has ended the first day of track action on top. It’s in a commanding position at the Russian Grand Prix once again – this time largely thanks to Max Verstappen’s upcoming engine-change grid penalty. But there’s plenty to suggest all hope is not lost for the championship leader at Sochi

The ‘backwards step’ that is the right move for Formula 1 Plus

The ‘backwards step’ that is the right move for Formula 1

OPINION: With its days apparently numbered, the MGU-H looks set to be dropped from Formula 1’s future engine rules in order to entice new manufacturers in. While it may appear a change of direction, the benefits for teams and fans could make the decision a worthwhile call

Formula 1
Sep 23, 2021
The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots Plus

The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots

Team Lotus ceased to exist in 1994 - and yet various parties have been trying to resurrect the hallowed name, in increasingly unrecognisable forms, ever since. DAMIEN SMITH brings GP Racing’s history of the legendary team to an end with a look at those who sought to keep the flame alive in Formula 1

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021
Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background Plus

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background

OPINION: Formula 1 reconvenes for the Russian Grand Prix two weeks after the latest blow in ‘Max Verstappen vs Lewis Hamilton’. While the Silverstone and Monza incidents were controversial, they thankfully lacked one element that so far separates the 2021 title fight from the worst examples of ugly championship battles

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021
How F1’s other champion to emerge from 1991 thrived at Lotus Plus

How F1’s other champion to emerge from 1991 thrived at Lotus

Mika Hakkinen became Michael Schumacher’s biggest rival in Formula 1 in the late-90s and early 2000s, having also made his F1 debut in 1991. But as MARK GALLAGHER recalls, while Schumacher wowed the world with a car that was eminently capable, Hakkinen was fighting to make his mark with a famous team in terminal decline

Formula 1
Sep 21, 2021
The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey  Plus

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 

Before Michael Schumacher – or anyone else – had driven the 191 (or 911 as it was initially called), Eddie Jordan turned to a fellow Irishman to test his new Formula 1 car. JOHN WATSON, a grand prix winner for Penske and McLaren, recalls his role in the birth of a legend…

Formula 1
Sep 20, 2021
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Plus

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says STUART CODLING

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021