The BMW Williams team resumed testing today at Jerez but, despite unusually heavy rain showers that persisted intermittently throughout the day, managed to cause something of an upset.

As was the case on day one, Ralf Schumacher and Juan Pablo Montoya focused their efforts on tyre testing, while new test driver Marc Gene worked on the new BMW V10 engine.

The inclement weather gave the Colombian the chance to shine and, in spite of the slippery surface, Montoya was able to use his new Michelin rubber to full effect in setting the second fastest time of the day, behind Rubens Barrichello's Ferrari. Having seen what the tyres were capable of in the morning session - when Jaguar's Eddie Irvine topped the times, Montoya set about bettering the mark when the track was merely damp straight after lunch, and only saw his own chart topper dislodged when Barrichello put together a better lap before the rains returned.

"I am very surprised with my lap times today - I certainly didn't expect things to go as well as they have," he beamed afterwards, "It's been nearly two years since I last drove an F1 car in the wet, but I immediately felt comfortable with this car this morning. It's a very well balanced car that reacts well to set-up changes.

"Furthermore, I must praise Michelin for being at this stage of development. I never drove [on] the Bridgestones, so it's hard to make direct comparisons. All I can say is that I pushed very hard today, and am obviously delighted to be on the pace."

Team-mate Ralf Schumacher, with whom there have been exaggerated reports of cross words, could not match Montoya's performance, but the German was nevertheless pleased with the way his day had gone. Instead of being given the freedom Montoya was allowed to get used to the car, Schumacher concentrated harder on working through the set-up programme, and felt that he had been well rewarded.

"We have had a productive session today," he reported, "The tyres are at a good stage of development, and I am pleased with the performance that we got out of them today, especially since this was my first taste of Michelins in the wet. The track was closed several times this afternoon with cars coming off and that compromised track time, so let's hope for better weather tomorrow and we'll see what further improvements can be found."

New test driver Gene was again deprived of track time by problems with BMW's latest baby, and the poor conditions did not allow much respite when he was finally able to get out on the circuit. Mistakes from his rivals brought on a series of stoppages in each session, but the Spaniard had too much on his mind to become frustrated.

"The BMW Williams team produced some positive work overnight, which alleviated some problems from yesterday," he revealed, "We still didn't achieve as much as we wanted today, and that was down to us in the morning. A constant stream of red lights. however, ruined the afternoon, and that obviously limited my time on the track. Overall, though, I am settling in well and enjoying my new role with the team."

Gene's problem was not major enough to warrant a full investigation from BMW, and he is likely to be able to continue with his programme after the car has been checked overnight. The team was more frustrated by the conditions - something it chose Spain in order to avoid - and hope that the weather is kinder when it returns in the morning.

"Unfortunately, our day was hampered by the bad weather," confirmed BMW's Dr Mario Thiessen, "Our target was to do a long run with the FW22B and the new V10. Because of the bad weather, however, this long run was split into several steps but, nevertheless, we collected some useful information on the engine set-up and drivability. With Ralf and Juan Pablo's cars, we had no problems, although we changed Ralf's engine at the end of the day so that he can start tomorrow with a fresh unit."

Despite the delays and interruptions, the team remained happy with the progress it had made with both the new engine and its new engine supplier.

"We achieved some good mileage today and we are optimistic about the progress being made," commented test team manager Tim Newton, "Given that we have three cars here, the team is working very hard indeed and it's encouraging to see the results and data that's being generated.

"The Michelin tyres have been well-received by our drivers and we are looking forward to taking the package to the next stage of development."