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Force India's Adrian Sutil sets best time in free practice

©

Video by FRANCE 24

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2009-09-12

Force India's Andrian Sutil (pictured) set the quickest time in the second free practice for the Monza Grand Prix. French rookie Romain Grosjean came in second.

Reuters - Force India's Adrian Sutil lapped quickest in free practice for the Italian Grand Prix on Friday while former team mate Giancarlo Fisichella was slowest on his first day as a Ferrari driver.

Sutil, yet to score a point this season, lapped the Monza circuit in one minute 23.924 seconds after being third quickest in the morning. French rookie Romain Grosjean was second in a Renault.

"We didn't try specifically to go fastest but if you are on top of your game and the car is working well, there's no reason why you couldn't be P1 (first) at the end of the session," said the German.

McLaren duo Lewis Hamilton and Heikki Kovalainen, both using the KERS energy recovery system that gives a boost at the push of a button, topped a sunny first session with the world champion setting a best time of 1:23.936.

Fisichella, who put Force India on pole at the Belgian Grand Prix and finished second for the team's first points, had a mixed debut with the Maranello team he has always longed to drive for.

The experienced Roman was eighth quickest, two places ahead of 2007 world champion and team mate Kimi Raikkonen, though he had switched to the softer and quicker tyres for the late run that produced the best time.

Major difficulties


Before then, he had been among the last on the timing screens and he returned to the bottom of the list in the afternoon.

"I feel satisfied with this first day, which was particularly tough from a driving point of view," he said. "The major difficulties are in adapting to the different positions of the buttons and gaining confidence with the KERS.

"The potential is there to get on to the front few rows but I need a bit more time to improve, especially in terms of braking and cutting the kerbs.

"Fisichella has replaced struggling compatriot Luca Badoer, himself a stand-in for injured Brazilian Felipe Massa, at Ferrari.

Championship leader Jenson Button, who has scored just 11 points in his last five races after winning six of the first seven, was seventh fastest for Brawn in the morning but then 19th.

Button leads Brazilian team mate Rubens Barrichello by 16 points with five races remaining.

"We had a few issues. There were a couple of reliability things we had to keep stopping for on a lot of our long runs," Button told reporters.

Italian Vitantonio Liuzzi, replacing Fisichella at Force India, managed the 12th best time in the afternoon on his return to a full Formula One race seat for the first time since 2007.

Date created : 2009-09-12

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