Wednesday February 14th, 2001
Frenchman Jean Alesi demonstrated again his impressive form during the pre-season by crushing the Estoril track record on the final day of testing for the Prost team at the Portuguese circuit.
Alesi, who had already broken the Barcelona circuit record this year, set a fastest time of 1:18.928, more than six tenths quicker than the previous record, driving the new Prost-Ferrari AP04 on Michelin tyres.
Jenson Button finally managed to have a productive day at Estoril for the Benetton team, who continued their development programme of set-up work and basic engine mapping with the new B201.
"It has been a satisfying day today," admitted Benetton's technical director Mike Gascoyne. "We got a good long run in again on the new car and got a further engine up to mileage. Each time we have done this we have made good progress with the chassis and our times reflect that."
Alesi's teammate Gaston Mazzacane was also present at the track, setting the third quickest time after 33 laps.
Pos Driver Team-Engine Tyres Time
1. Alesi Prost-Ferrari (M) 1:18.928
2. Button Benetton-Renault (M) 1:20.159
3. Mazzacane Prost-Ferrari (M) 1:20.700
All Timing Unofficial