Jaguar opts for Friday testing

Jaguar has become the fourth team to sign up for the Friday morning test sessions being introduced to Formula 1 this year, a reversal of policy from its earlier decision to continue private testing away from grand prixs

Jaguar opts for Friday testing

The decision means that the team will now join Renault, Jordan and Minardi in having an extra two hours of testing on the Friday of the Grand Prix weekend, and will also be able to select its race tyres after this session. In exchange, Jaguar has said that it can run 20 days of testing for one car, a departure from the original rule.

However, as the team missed the FIA's deadline to sign up for Friday testing, Jaguar's move must be approved by the sports governing body.

"This benefits Jaguar in several ways," said a team spokesman. "First and foremost, our drivers will not have an extra two hours themselves with the circuits and in Antonio's case, this is invaluable given his debut season an F1 driver."

Teams which had opted not to take part in the Friday test sessions recently complained that the ability for the teams involved to choose their tyres for the weekend could give them an unfair advantage. Although Jaguar did not give this as a reason for its U-turn, the team did concede that Friday testing would help their tyre development programme.

"The new framework will also allow us to better exploit the Michelin tyre development programme and if you look at races like Monaco, Canada and Australia where teams do not test prior to the race weekend, two extra hours on the Friday is far better for us than, say, six hours of testing around Valencia.

"The management have done their sums very carefully on this, weighed up every alternative and we are convinced that this gives us considerably more bang for our buck."

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