JANUARY 17, 2005
Big problems for Barcelona
The BAR-Honda team did the initial shakedwon runs of its new car at Barcelona on Sunday and then packed up the car and headed off unexpectedly to Valencia, reporting that the new surface at the Circuit de Catalunya offered no grip at all and was therefore useless for testing. The other teams will try out the new surface in the next few days and others may decide to follow BAR's example and switch to Valencia. If that happens Barcelona could be facing a major disaster as testing revenues are a major source of revenue. The resurfacing is the first since the circuit opened 15 years ago.
"The new track surface will not allow for a proper evaluation of the proposed test program," the team said in a statement.
Takuma Sato explained that the surface has no grip at all.
"They've resurfaced it all and oil is coming up," he said. "Maybe they need to make the surface a bit rougher. Off line it is unbelievably slippery, which is very dangerous."
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