Thursday May 3rd, 2001
Scot driver David Coulthard posted the fastest time on the final day of public testing at the Ricardo Tormo circuit in Valencia, Spain, where the McLaren team dominated the three-day session by topping the time sheets also on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Coulthard, who was second fastest yesterday, worked on traction control development and also carried out some tyres tests, completing a mammoth 105 laps (402 km) around the Spanish track, being over two tenths of a second quicker than Eddie Irvine at the wheel of the Jaguar R2.
San Marino Grand Prix winner Ralf Schumacher continued working for the Williams team, setting the third quickest time in front of McLaren's test driver Alexander Wurz and Colombian team mate Juan Pablo Montoya.
"For Ralf today we worked on tyre testing, set-up and traction control," explained Williams' chief operations engineer Sam Michaels. "It rained just after lunch, but luckily we missed this so were able to continue evaluating tyre compounds for Michelin for the upcoming Grands Prix.
"On Juan Pablo’s car we spent all day doing set up work, brake tests and tried some new components. For tomorrow we have a full day of wet testing for Michelin so we will flood the track and just test the wet tyres. We will continue with both our drivers tomorrow, while the other Michelin teams will have just one car each."
Local hero Pedro de la Rosa was sixth today driving the second Jaguar, completing a total of 84 laps, the Spaniard improving his time from yesterday by two tenths.
Brazilian Luciano Burti was once more the fastest of the Prost drivers - seventh quickest - after outpacing veteran team mate Jean Alesi, who admitted he enjoyed driving at the Valencia track.
"I like this circuit because is very technical, very useful to test tyres and brakes," Alesi told Europa Press. "It contains a lot of twisty turns and it's not very long, which makes it good to prepare the Monaco Grand Prix."
The Benettons were off the pace once more today, with Australian Mark Webber setting the eighth fastest time at the wheel of the old B200. Meanwhile, Briton Jenson Button was slowest again, completing only 17 laps.
The Michelin-shod teams - Williams, Jaguar, Benetton and Prost - will test tomorrow behind closed doors on an artificially wet track.
Pos Driver Team-Engine Tyres Time
1. Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:13.640
2. Irvine Jaguar-Cosworth (M) 1:13.844
3. R.Schumacher Williams-BMW (M) 1:14.352
4. Wurz McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:14.470
5. Montoya Williams-BMW (M) 1:14.609
6. De la Rosa Jaguar-Cosworth (M) 1:14.666
7. Burti Prost-Acer (M) 1:15.259
8. Webber Benetton-Renault (M) 1:15.739
9. Alesi Prost-Acer (M) 1:16.125
10. Button Benetton-Renault (M) 1:17.585
All Timing Unofficial