Saturday First Free Practice - Brazilian GP

Ferrari driver Rubens Barrichello claimed top spot in Saturday's opening practice session for the Brazilian Grand Prix in front of his home crowd at Interlagos.

Saturday First Free Practice - Brazilian GP

Ferrari driver Rubens Barrichello claimed top spot in Saturday's opening practice session for the Brazilian Grand Prix in front of his home crowd at Interlagos.

Barrichello set the pace in the 45-minute session with a lap time of 1:14.071 to finish marginally quicker than the Williams-BMW pairing of Ralf Schumacher and Juan Pablo Montoya. Schumacher and Montoya, who both struggled for performance in the wet on Friday qualifying, benefited from the warmer conditions in Sao Paulo on Saturday morning.

World Champion Michael Schumacher was fourth quickest, more than three tenths of a second slower than Ferrari teammate Barrichello, with Renault's Fernando Alonso fifth in the times. McLaren's Kimi Raikkonen was sixth quickest, with Jaguar's Antonio Pizzonia and Mark Webber continuing their positive weekend in seventh and eighth respectively.

McLaren driver David Coulthard ended a largely incident-free session ninth in the times with Sauber driver Nick Heidfeld completing the top ten. All drivers had taken the opportunity to work on a dry track immediately when the session opened following the torrential rain-hit sessions on Friday.

Sauber driver Heinz-Harald Frentzen went wide and left the track at turn 2 with 11 minutes gone in the session, but was able to return to the circuit and continue his run. Ralf Schumacher also had an off-track excursion when he was caught out at turn 1 briefly, but like Frentzen he returned to the track.

Toyota's Olivier Panis also left the track, this time at turn 12, but continued his run without problems late in the practice session.

Pos Driver Team Time Laps 1. Barrichello Ferrari (B) 1:14.071 209.426 km/h 18 2. R.Schumacher Williams BMW (M) 1:14.192 + 0.121 21 3. Montoya Williams BMW (M) 1:14.388 + 0.317 20 4. M.Schumacher Ferrari (B) 1:14.419 + 0.348 13 5. Alonso Renault (M) 1:14.545 + 0.474 21 6. Raikkonen McLaren Mercedes (M) 1:14.557 + 0.486 15 7. Pizzonia Jaguar Cosworth (M) 1:14.613 + 0.542 24 8. Webber Jaguar Cosworth (M) 1:14.646 + 0.575 23 9. Coulthard McLaren Mercedes (M) 1:14.702 + 0.631 17 10. Heidfeld Sauber Petronas (B) 1:14.744 + 0.673 17 11. Fisichella Jordan Ford (B) 1:14.788 + 0.717 16 12. Panis Toyota (M) 1:14.815 + 0.744 19 13. Trulli Renault (M) 1:14.841 + 0.770 14 14. Villeneuve BAR Honda (B) 1:14.867 + 0.796 28 15. da Matta Toyota (M) 1:14.912 + 0.841 21 16. Frentzen Sauber Petronas (B) 1:14.991 + 0.920 16 17. Button BAR Honda (B) 1:15.291 + 1.220 24 18. Verstappen Minardi Cosworth (B) 1:15.951 + 1.880 15 19. Firman Jordan Ford (B) 1:16.281 + 2.210 12 20. Wilson Minardi Cosworth (B) 1:16.676 + 2.605 13 All Timing Unofficial

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