I love the first practice day of the first grand prix of the season.  All the drivers are making bold statements as to why they did well or not, but the lap times mean almost nothing.  Looking at the lap times for the day you have Anthony Davidson, a test driver from the Honda team on top followed by Michael Schumacher of Ferrari.  Then the real mixup of teams and drivers follows with Liuzzi from Scuderia Torro Rosso (the renamed perrenial tail-ender Minardi team) in sixth place, one behind the reigning world champion Fernando Alonso of Renault.  The thing that makes sense is both McLaren drivers are close to each other in lap times but somewhat off the pace.  Reminds me of that line from MacBeth - "full of sound and fury, signifying nothing".

Saturday qualifying is the real deal. With the new format where after each of 2 15 minute sessions the six slowest drivers get kicked out leaving the top 10 drivers to battle for the top grid positions, we're sure to see excitement and probably a little confusion.  I'll be up at 6am tomorrow morning to watch it.  At that time we'll know who to watch in the race. 

My prediction for the top spots on the grid:  Honda and Renault, followed by McLaren and Williams.  I'm 100% confident that Super Aguri will be the slowest team on the grid and occupy the last two spots.

The Friday Free Practice Results:

P. No  Driver       Team - Engine   Tyres    Times      Ave/Gaps
01. 36  DAVIDSON     Honda             M   1'31"353  213.274 Km/h  
02.  5  M.SCHUMACHER Ferrari           B   1'31"751    + 0'00"398 
03. 35  WURZ         Williams Cosworth B   1'31"764    + 0'00"411 
04.  6  MASSA        Ferrari           B   1'32"175    + 0'00"822 
05.  1  ALONSO       Renault           M   1'32"538    + 0'01"185 
06. 20  LIUZZI       Toro Rosso Cosw.  M   1'32"703    + 0'01"350 
07. 37  DOORNBOS     RedBull Cosworth  M   1'32"926    + 0'01"573 
08.  2  FISICHELLA   Renault           M   1'33"215    + 0'01"862 
09. 12  BUTTON       Honda             M   1'33"226    + 0'01"873 
10. 38  KUBICA       BMW Sauber        M   1'33"244    + 0'01"891 
11. 15  KLIEN        RedBull Ferrari   M   1'33"557    + 0'02"204 
12.  3  RAIKKONEN    McLaren Mercedes  M   1'33"577    + 0'02"224 
13.  4  MONTOYA      McLaren Mercedes  M   1'33"726    + 0'02"373 
14. 16  HEIDFELD     BMW Sauber        M   1'33"848    + 0'02"495 
15. 40  JANI         Toro Rosso Cosw.  M   1'33"900    + 0'02"547 
16. 21  SPEED        Toro Rosso Cosw.  M   1'34"284    + 0'02"931 
17.  9  WEBBER       Williams Cosworth B   1'34"333    + 0'02"980 
18. 11  BARRICHELLO  Honda             M   1'34"384    + 0'03"031 
19. 14  COULTHARD    RedBull Ferrari   M   1'34"432    + 0'03"079 
20. 18  MONTEIRO     Midland Toyota    B   1'34"459    + 0'03"106 
21. 10  ROSBERG      Williams Cosworth B   1'34"953    + 0'03"600 
22.  7  R.SCHUMACHER Toyota            B   1'35"170    + 0'03"817 
23. 39  WINKELHOCK   Midland Toyota    B   1'35"686    + 0'04"333 
24.  8  TRULLI       Toyota            B   1'35"898    + 0'04"545 
25. 17  VILLENEUVE   BMW Sauber        M   1'36"264    + 0'04"911 
26. 19  ALBERS       Midland Toyota    B   1'36"314    + 0'04"961 
27. 22  SATO         S. Aguri F1 Honda B   1'37"588    + 0'06"235 
28. 23  IDE          S. Aguri F1 Honda B   1'39"021    + 0'07"668