McLaren-Mercedes driver, Kimi Raikkonen staked his claim for pole position by topping the times this morning in free practice for the Turkish Grand Prix.

The Finn managed to post a best time in the low 1 minute 26 seconds bracket, four tenths or so up on Jenson Button, who was best of the rest in his BAR. McLaren were again the in form team though, as Juan Pablo Montoya was fourth overall, having been quickest in the first session. Despite Raikkonen's efforts though, nobody could better the marker set down by Toyota test driver, Ricardo Zonta during practice on Friday, when he posted a 1m 25.583s lap.

Current championship leader, Fernando Alonso was third, three hundredths slower than Button, while the Spaniard's team-mate, Giancarlo Fisichella was sixth, in the sister Renault R25.

Takuma Sato was fifth overall in the combined times, the Japanese driver, one of only three runners unable to better their time in the second session. Nick Heidfeld was another that failed to improve, although he was still eighth quickest overall, one tenth slower than Mark Webber, in the other Williams-BMW.

Toyota meanwhile had to make do with ninth on the timesheets, Ralf Schumacher four tenths up on Jarno Trulli, who was 13th. David Coulthard completed the top ten for Red Bull Racing, while Felipe Massa was eleventh and Christian Klien twelfth.

Ferrari's largely disappointing year continued, with Michael Schumacher managing to post only the fourteenth quickest time, while Rubens Barrichello was equally slow, two places further down the leaderboard, in the sister F2005. Jacques Villeneuve was 15th and as such the 'meat' in the Scuderia sandwich.

At the back came the Minardi's and Jordan's, Tiago Monteiro leading the way in his EJ15, just two tenths slower than Barrichello, while Minardi duo, Robert Doornbos and Christijan Albers came in 18th and 19th, both in the 1m 30s bracket. Narain Karthikeyan did not set a time after mechanical problems and Jordan later changed his engine - as a result he will now get a 10-place grid penalty, something that will mean he will start right at the back.

Complete combined Saturday free practice times follow...

1. Kimi Raikkonen Finland McLaren-Mercedes 1:26.120
2. Jenson Button Britain BAR-Honda 1:26.599
3. Fernando Alonso Spain Renault-Renault 1:26.627
4. Juan Pablo Montoya Colombia McLaren-Mercedes 1:26.7485. Takuma Sato Japan BAR-Honda 1:27.159
6. Giancarlo Fisichella Italy Renault-Renault 1:27.240
7. Mark Webber Australia Williams-BMW 1:27.3358. Nick Heidfeld Germany Williams-BMW 1:27.471
9. Ralf Schumacher Germany Toyota-Toyota 1:27.556
10. David Coulthard Britain Red Bull-Cosworth 1:27.796
11. Felipe Massa Brazil Sauber-Petronas 1:27.829
12. Christian Klien Austria Red Bull-Cosworth 1:27.919
13. Jarno Trulli Italy Toyota-Toyota 1:27.921
14. Michael Schumacher Germany Ferrari-Ferrari 1:28.155
15. Jacques Villeneuve Canada Sauber-Petronas 1:28.534
16. Rubens Barrichello Brazil Ferrari-Ferrari 1:28.615
17. Tiago Monteiro Portugal Jordan-Toyota 1:28.830
18. Robert Doornbos Holland Minardi-Cosworth 1:30.15519. Christijan Albers Holland Minardi-Cosworth 1:30.837
20. Narain Karthikeyan India Jordan-Toyota No time

Italics denotes best time set in first session.

all times unofficial

 

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