Kamui Kobayashi set the pace for Sauber today at Jerez in Spain as testing continued in the countdown to F1 2010.

Kobayashi completed 103 tours in total, one of five runners to break the 100 marker, and in contrast to Wednesday the weather conditions were a lot better.

Indeed the track dried out quickly this morning and in the end his best effort was a 1 minute 19.950 seconds, which was set on his final lap. Pedro de la Rosa will now take over the C29 on Friday.

"It was a good day of testing as we managed to complete our programme," Sauber's head of track engineering, Giampaolo Dall'Ara summarised. "In the morning we did some aero tests. After the lunch break we concentrated on set-up and tyre evaluation.

"For most of the day we were running with a high fuel load prior to a run with a lighter car before the end of the session. For tomorrow the weather forecast is not really promising, but we will cope with what we get."

Sebastien Buemi meanwhile was 'best of the rest', less than a tenth off Kobayashi on a 1m 20.026s. Buemi concentrated on evaluating a few aero parts today, as well the assessment of different mechanical set-ups. He also tried out all three compounds of Bridgestone tyres.

"I am pleased with how the past two days have gone and although rain is never ideal, yesterday's damp conditions meant we could try the wet weather tyres," stated the Scuderia Toro Rosso pilot. "Today, in the dry, we were able to do a lot of laps, as the car ran reliably. We tried various set-ups and ran with different fuel loads, so we are beginning to get a better understanding of STR5 in general."

Jenson Button was third for McLaren and declared himself much happier with the seat and installation following his day at the wheel of the MP4-25.

He began proceedings with a continuation of the early-morning aero mapping started yesterday. Then after a successful number of aero runs, he switched to finding suitable mechanical and aero set-ups, before focusing on longer running, including evaluating tyres on a number of varying fuel-loads in the afternoon.

He had to make a precautionary stop just before the day's end when a warning light came on in the cockpit, but that was his only problem.

Further down the order, Nico Hulkenberg and Vitantonio Liuzzi were fourth and fifth, the former only 0.011 seconds off Button despite some issues with his Williams FW32.

"Today was quite a difficult day as we had some technical problems, but I'm still feeling positive about the car," said Hulkenberg, who did 67 laps in total. "Of course, I would like to have had more running time, but that's sometimes the way it goes. Overall, it's been a good two days and the car feels good."

"We had some mechanical problems with the hydraulic system and the driveline today," explained Williams technical director, Sam Michael. "We had a leak first thing this morning, which we identified relatively quickly, but it took us a long time to correct because the clutch was covered with hydraulic fluid. That effectively ruled us out of most of the morning session.

"We encountered a smaller issue this afternoon with a driveshaft component. It was quicker to rectify, but obviously wasn't ideal in terms of track time. We still made our way through three or four set-up changes and we'll just have to target higher mileage tomorrow with Rubens [Barrichello]."

Liuzzi and Force India in contrast were more pleased with their days work, which saw the Italian notch up 80 tours, his best lap a 1m 20.754s

"I think that we can be pretty happy about today. We covered a lot of laps and a lot of the test items we wanted to," Liuzzi noted. "For sure we still have to look into a few more areas but overall the car is responding well and reacts to all the changes. We tested different settings and different conditions and overall it was always positive, so I have to say we can be really satisfied about how it's going. The team did a good job and now we have to keep pushing for the next days of testing as we still have to extrapolate the best out of the car."

Michael Schumacher rounded out the top six and despite being almost a second off Kobayashi insisted he was pleased: "I am very happy with how the day went today even if we could not finish our schedule completely due to red flags," reflected the record-breaking multiple F1 world champion, who is back this season with Mercedes. "However I managed to complete a lot of laps which is very precious to me.

"A new car, a new team and new conditions, therefore our first goal has to be to make the car reliable. Days like today help massively in that respect, especially as the weather forecast for the next few days isn't looking quite so rosy. I felt very comfortable driving the car and it was good fun today."

Of the rest Ferrari's Fernando Alonso and Robert Kubica came in seventh and eighth, the latter six tenths slower in his Renault.

"We started the day with a damp track so we had to wait for conditions to improve before we started our main programme," said Kubica. "We made good progress with the workload and did some set-up evaluation and tried to understand how the changes influenced the balance and behaviour of the car. We saw some nice results and learnt some interesting things so overall it was a good day."

Mark Webber and Timo Glock were the only other runners on track. Glock managed only 11 laps for Virgin due to a wing problem and with a shortage of spare parts he had to sit out most of the day's proceedings. Webber in contrast did 99 laps and gave the newly launched RB6 the thumbs-up.

"It's been a very productive two days," said the Red Bull Racing man. "We've had a few little niggles here and there with reliability, but despite that we've managed to complete quite a few laps with the new car. We've had one wet and one dry day and learned a lot on both. We've still got quite a bit of testing to go before we get to Bahrain, which we're going to need to continue to understand the car and keep finding performance. But I'd say we're off to a pretty solid start and we've got a great base to build on."

The Jerez test now continues on Thursday.

To view the Jerez day two times, CLICK HERE.


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