Saturday Second Free Practice - US GP

Michael Schumacher marginally improved his time from Saturday morning's first session and remained in control at the front of the field as he prepared for the afternoon qualifying session for Sunday's United States Grand Prix.

Saturday Second Free Practice - US GP

Michael Schumacher marginally improved his time from Saturday morning's first session and remained in control at the front of the field as he prepared for the afternoon qualifying session for Sunday's United States Grand Prix.

The German improved his earlier time of 1:11.262 by just 0.104 seconds but that was enough to hold onto the top spot as his Brazilian teammate Rubens Barrichello closed to within 0.236 seconds.

Barrichello made up on lost time on Friday to finish second while Briton Eddie Irvine was back on the pace after an early morning blip to move into third place by the end of the session. Irvine was 0.530 seconds slower than Schumacher and more than a tenth faster than fourth-placed Ralf Schumacher in the leading Williams-BMW machine. Briton David Coulthard was fifth fastest.

McLaren driver Coulthard once again outpaced his teammate Kimi Raikkonen, who finished eighth, more than a second slower than Schumacher, and crashed into the tyre barriers between turns nine and ten at end of the session.

German Nick Heidfeld was sixth for Sauber, one place ahead of Schumacher's Colombian teammate Juan Pablo Montoya, a former Indianapolis 500 winner, who languished in seventh spot 0.834 seconds off Schumacher's pace.

Italian Giancarlo Fisichella continued his impressive weekend to claim ninth spot for Jordan as teammate Takuma Sato sat out the session until the final minute and finished 16th after experiencing an engine fire in the first practice.

The second Sauber of German Heinz-Harald Frentzen was tenth fastest, while Minardi had a tough time with Malaysian Alex Yoong spinning and Australian Mark Webber missing out on almost all of the 45-minute session after stopping at the side of the track.

Pos Driver Team Time Laps 1. M.Schumacher Ferrari (B) 1:11.158 212.080 km/h 28 2. Barrichello Ferrari (B) 1:11.394 + 0.236 29 3. Irvine Jaguar Cosworth (M) 1:11.688 + 0.530 25 4. R.Schumacher Williams BMW (M) 1:11.849 + 0.691 26 5. Coulthard McLaren Mercedes (M) 1:11.909 + 0.751 22 6. Heidfeld Sauber Petronas (B) 1:11.910 + 0.752 26 7. Montoya Williams BMW (M) 1:11.992 + 0.834 24 8. Raikkonen McLaren Mercedes (M) 1:12.162 + 1.004 26 9. Fisichella Jordan Honda (B) 1:12.220 + 1.062 28 10. Frentzen Sauber Petronas (B) 1:12.589 + 1.431 23 11. Salo Toyota (M) 1:12.656 + 1.498 25 12. de la Rosa Jaguar Cosworth (M) 1:12.679 + 1.521 28 13. Villeneuve BAR Honda (B) 1:12.726 + 1.568 17 14. Panis BAR Honda (B) 1:12.746 + 1.588 28 15. Trulli Renault (M) 1:12.756 + 1.598 30 16. Sato Jordan Honda (B) 1:12.826 + 1.668 16 17. Button Renault (M) 1:12.878 + 1.720 28 18. McNish Toyota (M) 1:13.204 + 2.046 33 19. Webber Minardi Asiatech (M) 1:13.547 + 2.389 20 20. Yoong Minardi Asiatech (M) 1:13.562 + 2.404 34 All Timing Unofficial

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