Hakkinen flies in morning practice

Mika Hakkinen leapt to the top of the timesheets with a blistering last minute lap in the first of the two Saturday morning practice sessions at Spa

Hakkinen flies in morning practice

The McLaren driver's lap of 1m51.043s was nearly 0.8s quicker than the best that anyone else could manage.

For all but the final two minutes of the session there was not a McLaren or Ferrari to be seen in the top five positions as first Jacques Villeneuve's BAR then Williams-BMW's Jenson Button made the early running.

Heinz-Harald Frentzen then took his Jordan round the Belgian circuit 0.7s faster than anyone had up to that point, only to be usurped himself by countryman Ralf Schumacher less than a minute later.

This German dominance was soon spoilt by Jarno Trulli, the Italian pipping Schumacher by a scant 0.013s before Hakkinen's final effort put all this into perspective.

Frentzen's last lap put him back up to second despite a violent kerb-hopping moment at the Bus Stop. He was followed by Trulli and Schumacher Jr.

David Coulthard could not repeat the dominant form he showed on Friday and was only fifth quickest, completing very few laps and ending up a second slower than his team-mate.

He was in much better shape than the Ferraris however. Michael Schumacher was 1.3s slower than Hakkinen in seventh, while Rubens Barrichello could only manage 14th, a full three seconds off the pace.

Impressing briefly during the session were the Jaguar and Prost drivers, with Johnny Herbert in the top three at one stage and Jean Alesi holding fifth position for a time before slipping to a still competitive eighth.

The only casualty in a remarkably tidy session was Arrows' Jos Verstappen, who pulled off at the side of the Kemmel Straight with a mechanical problem.

For all the times from the first Saturday morning session click here.

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