Valentino Rossi's special two-day test in a Ferrari F1 car got underway at Mugello in Italy this morning.

By lunchtime the Italian had completed just under 30 laps of the Tuscan circuit, the scene of Rossi's record-breaking seventh consecutive home motorcycle grand prix victory on June 1 of this year.

Rossi's best lap so far is reported to be in the high 1min 23sec range, which is around three seconds off the ultimate pace of Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro F1 drivers Felipe Massa and Kimi Raikkonen in the same car.

Rossi is driving a Ferrari F2008, which won this year's F1 constructors' world championship and finished second and third in the drivers' world championship with Massa and Raikkonen. The F2008 is the first F1 car Rossi has driven without traction control.

The test, which Rossi insists is purely for fun, marks the newly crowned six-time MotoGP world champion's fifth F1 appearance since 2004, although his last F1 test before today took place in February 2006 at Valencia.

More to follow...

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