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Williams test driver Alex Wurz set the pace on the first day of testing this week at Jerez de la Frontera in southern Spain. At the wheel of the team's 2006 car for the first time, Wurz stopped the clock with a best lap of 1m18.144s. He finished the day 0.1s ahead of the two Hondas of Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello.
It was a dry and sunny day at the circuit as Williams, Honda, Toyota and Midland took to the track, each with two drivers. Behind Wurz and the two Hondas Nico Rosberg recorded the fourth fasetst time as the team continued working on its new gearbox and fine tuning the car to Bridgestone's tyres. The two Toyotas of Ricardo Zonta and Olivier Panis were fifth and sixth the team focusing mainly on tyre testing.
Midland fielded its driver pairing of Christijan Albers and Tiago Monteiro - the team's first test since it launched its 2006 car. Between them the pair completed 145 laps, Albers the faster as he drove the 2006 car, Monteiro was in the team's old car and will drive the new one later this week.
Tomorrow, McLaren, Renault and BMW will join the test. McLaren is expected to run a new V8 engine it hopes will cure the trouble it has experienced so far in testing.
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