1-2 for Renault in session two


Ahead of today's second free practice session, the air temperature is now 21 degrees C, while the track temperature is 26 degrees.

The lights go green, however, nobody seems to bothered about returning to work. Although engines are being revved, and the mechanics are scurrying about, much like worker ants, little else is happening.

The session is five minutes old, before we finally see a driver (Raikkonen) on track. He's joined by Alonso and Trulli.

We might have had to wait, but already both Alonso and Raikkonen clearly mean business, the Spaniard posts 1:16.243, while the Finn posts 1:16.828. Liuzzi, Villeneuve, Massa and Montoya are also on track now.

As Trulli goes third (17.477), Raikkonen raises the benchmark with a 1:16.015, faster than anything else we've seen today.

Massa goes third (16.917) ahead of teammate Villeneuve and Liuzzi.

A 1:16.997 sees David Coulthard go fourth, the Scot really looking 'hot to trot' this weekend.

Michael Schumacher can only manage ninth (19.455), as Liuzzi goes third (16.698). Moments later, the Italian is leapfrogged by his teammate.

Juan Pablo Montoya has a big spin but is able to continue, as Heidfeld goes third.

For the first time today, Michael Schumacher tops the timesheets, the German crossing the line at 1:15.633. Elsewhere, Massa goes fifth, ahead of Webber and Coulthard.

A 1:16.261 sees Rubens Barrichello go fourth, ahead of Heidfeld, Massa and Ralf.

With seventeen minutes gone, Webber improves to third (splitting Raikkonen and Alonso. Moments later, the Australian goes quickest, the WilliamsF1 driver posting 1:15.354, as Jarno Trulli goes fourth (16.132).

Next time around Webber consolidates his position, posting a 1:15.235, almost 0.4s quicker than Michael Schumacher.

After a brief lull, Tonio Liuzzi livens things up as he goes fourth with a 1:15.988. Meanwhile, Michael is the first driver to break the 1:15s barrier, crossing the line at 1:14961. Moments later however, Raikkonen posts an incredible 1;14.258. Game on!

To further prove the pace of the McLaren, Montoya slips in behind his teammate, the Colombian posting 1:14.543.

As Massa improves to eleventh (16.424), Coulthard goes eighth with a 1:16.188.

Moments later, the Scot is demoted by Massa, as Alonso goes quickest in the first sector. The Spaniard crosses the line at 1:14.047, taking over 0.2s off Raikkonen's best.

Coulthard continues to chip away at his time, the Scot going sixth with a 1:15.539.

With fifteen minutes remaining, it's Alonso ahead of Raikkonen, Montoya, Michael, Webber, Coulthard, Barrichello, Heidfeld, Liuzzi and Massa.

The only driver that hasn't posted a time in this session is Jordan's Tiago Monteiro.

A 1:14.418 sees Webber go third while Ralf slips in behind, ahead of Montoya and Michael.

Tonio Liuzzi goes seventh (14.98) ahead of his teammate.

With ten minutes remaining, Jarno Trulli serves notice of his intention, posting a 1:14.322, to go third, just 0.275s off Alonso's time. Elsewhere, Heidfeld goes ninth (15.196).

With seven minutes remaining, there are but five drivers on track, one of them being Monteiro, who has yet to post a time.

We look as though we could be in for a grandstand finish to the session, as everyone makes a final attempt at the top spot, and (hopefully) the optimum set-up for qualifying.

Giancarlo Fisichella wastes no time, he takes the tope spot from his teammate with a 1:13.988, the opposition looks suitably impressed.

All the 'big guns' are on track, but nobody seems to be making any significant improvements.

With just three minutes remaining, there's a big incident involving Coulthard, Villeneuve and Ralf. All three are OK, but the Red Bull is badly damaged.

The session is red-flagged, but with so little timer remaining it's decided not to re-start it.

Consequently, there are no improvements, with Fisichella topping the timesheets at the end of play, ahead of Alonso, Raikkonen, Trulli, Webber, Ralf, Montoya, Coulthard, Michael and Liuzzi.

The top ten are covered by 1.010, which is clear proof of how tight things are, however at Monaco, unlike other high-speed do-or-die tracks, this is not quite as significant. Certainly, at present it appears that the Renaults and McLarens have the edge… though let's not forget that man Trulli.

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Published: 21/05/2005
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