The Mild Seven Renault F1 team completed 106 laps of the Circuit de Catalunya as the next round of Formula One testing began in Barcelona and Jerez ahead of the two flyaway races that end the season.

French test driver Franck Montagny was at the wheel of the sole R23 present in Spain, getting a rare chance to conduct a test alongside other teams.

The Formula Nissan points leader - who re-commences his race season in Austria at the weekend, used the first runs of the day to acclimatise himself to the car, then began working on a development programme for Michelin, concentrating on tyre casings for the final races of the year. During the afternoon, he subsequently completed
longer runs evaluating chassis parameters.

"We did some useful work today," commented technical director Mike Gascoyne, "Franck completed more than 500km, with making any mistakes, and, given this is the first time he has driven the car on a closed circuit since Magny-Cours, it was a very impressive performance. He also provided us with some very useful data."

Tomorrow, the team will complete its final day of 'non-Heathrow' testing of the season, with Montagny continuing his tyre and chassis development programmes.



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