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Thursday, March 19, 2009

Enough of this testing, let's go racing!

Williams and McLaren wrapped up the final day of preseason testing in Jerez, with Williams’ Kazuki Nakajima heading the sheets by posting a time of 1:17.494 for the fastest lap of the week.

Heikki Kovalainen’s 1:17.946 was a marked improvement for McLaren, giving the boys from Woking a boost heading into the season opener.

Next up: Melbourne.

Preparations Begin For Australian F1 Grand Prix


Thursday -- Jerez:
  1. Kazuki Nakajima, Williams FW31, 1:17.494
  2. Heikki Kovalainen, McLaren MP4-24, 1:17.946

Mixed reception for rule changes

The reaction is rolling in on the FIA's last minute rule changes, and it runs the gamut. Some question the timing, some question the need for constantly changing the rules, some are cautiously optimistic. But whether it be the points structure of the budget cap, there is no shortage of opinion:

Points:

Michael Schumacher – "astonishing"

Mark Webber – "unnecessary"

Fernando Alonso – "these kinds of decisions can only confuse the fans"

Jenson Button – "I think the public will struggle to understand…"

Bernie Ecclestone – "this is a good start"

Bernie also thinks Jenson Button may benefit from the new point system

"But if Brawn has got it right, there's a chance that for the first three races we could maybe see Jenson winning," the BBC reports he said. "Now that it is not points that decides the championship, if Jenson has three races in his pocket then it is not bad - although I suppose in the end you have to look at the old timers like Fernando Alonso, Kimi Raikkonen, Felipe Massa and Lewis Hamilton."

Budget:

Eddie Jordan – "Full marks to the FIA"

Flavio Briatore – "It was a bit of a shock"

Luca di Montezemolo – "disappointment and concern"

Bernie Ecclestone has little sympathy. "Any time we make any changes, there are a whole bunch of people who say, 'forget it, it won't happen'"

Ecclestone again hints at USGP return

While Bernie Ecclestone took an opportunity to slam Europe ("In the next 10 years, Europe is going to become a third-world economy,") PlanetF1 is running with a story hinting F1 will make a return to the States, but not at Indy. Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six

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