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LIVE COMMENTARY: JEREZ FIRST PRE-SEASON TEST - TEST DAY TWO
   GO TO LIVE INDEX ALL TIMES GMT  
As it happened: Test day two
By Pablo Elizalde and Matt Beer
The live commentary has ended. No further updates will be posted.
07:59 Good morning and welcome to day two of 2012 Formula 1 testing at Jerez.

08:00 Yesterday the 2012 season build-up kicked off with Kimi Raikkonen on top for Lotus in his first appearance alongside the rest of the F1 pack since the end of 2009.

08:00 The Finn stays in the black and gold car today - will he lead the way again?

08:01 First rumble in the pitlane and we're underway. Caterham's Heikki Kovalainen leads them out, followed by Tuesday pacesetter Raikkonen.

08:01 Jules Bianchi, taking control of the Force India for the first time today, follows.

08:01 Toro Rosso's Daniel Ricciardo joins the fray.

08:02 For Kovalainen, this will be the first time that Caterham has ever runs KERS.

08:03 As the team itself says... @MyCaterhamF1: "Today will be the first time we've ever run with KERS active on the car - another step forward for us!"

08:03 Everyone is already back in the pits, those were single-lap installation runs to check everything is working.

08:04 The addition of KERS is potentially significant for Caterham - at the end of last season the team formerly known as Lotus reckoned it was the last missing piece that would bring it into the midfield pack.

08:04 Pastor Maldonado, who managed just 25 laps for Williams yesterday, heads out.

08:04 Williams played down its lack of Tuesday running, saying it had to focus on initial checks following the switch from Cosworth to Renault power having had to cancel a planned shakedown run in Spain due to poor weather.

08:06 Michael Schumacher, in the 2011-spec Mercedes, heads out, followed shortly after by Sergio Perez, getting his first taste of Sauber's C31.

08:08 Jenson Button heads out for McLaren.

08:09 This time last year, McLaren's new car was woefully unreliable and not very quick, and a massive last-minute revamp was required to save the start of its season. But no repeat of that disaster 12 months on...

Button: McLaren set for better start

08:10 The McLaren is sporting a huge pitot sensor on its sidepod. The device is used for aerodynamic measuring.

08:11 Talking of aero work, Felipe Massa heads out for Ferrari with the periscope again attached to his rollhoop.

08:11 10 of today's 11 runners have now gone out - just Red Bull hiding at the minute.

08:12 Red Bull hiding no longer - Mark Webber heads out just as Massa comes past the pits for the first time.

08:12 Bianchi, also sporting a periscope gauge on the rollhoop, heads out again.

08:13 Here's today's Jerez weather forecast from our expert @radarguruf1: "Clear and sunny conditions will remain in place for the second day of track action. However, it will be much cooler thanks to a north-easterly wind picking up to around 25 km/h during the afternoon.

"Air temperature will only reach 10 degrees Celsius and allied to the strengthening breeze track temperature will suffer. This change gives the team engineers something to think about in terms of wing angle and gear ratios, while Pirelli gets to work with a large temperature variation compared to yesterday."

08:15 A quick reminder of who's here and doing what... We have 2012 cars from Red Bull, McLaren, Ferrari, Lotus, Force India, Sauber, Toro Rosso, Williams and Caterham, 2011 cars from Mercedes and HRT, and no Marussia.

08:16 The remaining new designs are expected to appear for test two at Barcelona in a fortnight - taking advantage of the unusually large gap between the opening two tests to get more factory time.

08:16 Raikkonen comes back out.

08:18 Some sceptics might be surprised to hear that HRT plans to have a new car out by the middle of pre-season testing given its last minute scrambles of 2010 and '11, but new boss Luis Perez Sala is adamant all will be well, as AUTOSPORT Plus subscribers can read here.

08:18 Kovalainen also comes back out in the Caterham. Finger poised over that new KERS button...?

08:18 Weather watch: the temperature is currently a moderate 3.2 degrees, and track temperature even lower at just 2.8.

08:19 Later this morning new Williams driver Bruno Senna will be joining us to answer your questions - and there's still time to get a few more onto our list for him. So if you want to know Bruno's thoughts on any F1 topic, email your question to live@autosport.com now.

08:20 And you don't just have to quiz Senna, you can also send questions for our team of experts in the Jerez paddock to live@autosport.com as well.

08:21 Missed yesterday's action and want a recap...? Here you go:

Raikkonen quickest in first 2012 test

08:22 First flying lap of the day by Raikkonen, but it is Kovalainen who sets the early pace with an impressive 1m22.732s - already faster than his best yesterday.

08:22 News from @InsideFerrari: "Felipe Massa has just completed his double installation lap: no issues on the car."

08:23 Raikkonen comes into the pits after starting his day with a modest 1m26s lap.

08:24 Bianchi is on a very controlled - or slow - lap as he focuses on aero work.

08:25 Ricciardo out for Toro Rosso, followed almost immediately by Maldonado in the Williams FW34, as Kovalainen comes back in.

08:26 Schumacher heads out for Mercedes after the apparently obligatory practice start in the pitlane.

08:27 News from @Lotus_F1Team: "Kimi back from a three lap run, steering still not to his liking and a minor return to rallying with a brief off track excursion to report."

08:27 Our eagle eyes didn't quite spot where he went off, but he made it back safely.

08:28 No one has yet crashed a 2012 F1 car, actually...

08:28 Maldonado sets a 1m28.127s for his first flying lap.

08:29 Webber sets out again for Red Bull.

08:30 For a third time, Schumacher comes down the pitlane, does a practice start and heads back out again.

08:30 Webber comes past the pits for the first time.

08:31 Button, on medium tyres, crawls down the pitlane and then heads out.

08:31 @InsideFerrari: "So, don't expect to see spectacular lap times from our side. What is important is that we do our job in the proper way."

08:31 Is that a hint from Ferrari that there is rather a lot of work to do...?

08:32 There goes Schumacher through the pitlane again...

08:32 As Webber sets a 1m24.821s to go second fastest.

08:33 Caterham update from @MyCaterhamF1: "6 laps done & KOV is in to adjust brake blanking. He's saying there's a bit of understeer in the lower speed corners so we'll look at that"

08:33 Now Webber shoots to the top with a 1m21.518s lap.

08:33 That's 0.8s ahead of Kovalainen, but 2s off Raikkonen's time-topping Tuesday lap.

08:33 Red flag, and it's for Webber.

08:34 Can't see where the car is yet.

08:35 Red flag might not be for Webber, his car is still moving.

08:35 We can see marshals on track, perhaps the issue is debris.

08:35 The intrepid @StrangAutosport is hunting for the red flag cause.

08:37 Problem could be a sensor fallen off, or a bit of debris or even oil - the brooms are out and the cement dust is down.

08:37 Suggestions that the issue is gravel on the track.

08:37 Eight marshals are cleaning the circuit down at Dry Sac.

08:37 All cars are safely back in the pits.

08:38 If you get bored reading our descriptions of marshals and brooms during this red flag - and you're an AUTOSPORT Plus subscriber - you could read our daily testing blog from Tuesday:

Inside testing - Jerez day two

08:39 The stray gravel could be from Raikkonen's earlier off, which as @StrangAutosport report, caused a minimum of damage. Raikkonen was, as you'd expect, completely unflustered.

08:39 We're green again, another good stint for the Jerez marshals.

08:39 They had a fairly quiet opening day as the new cars showed impressive reliability - just two red flags late on yesterday, for Ricciardo and Kobayashi.

08:40 Ricciardo is the first to go back out in the Toro Rosso.

08:40 Button is next to join the track.

08:42 Raikkonen gravel update from @Lotus_F1Team: "Car now undergoing a checkover and hoover action. We may even replace the plank."

08:43 A 1m24.386s for Ricciardo, as Button comes round to start his first flying lap in the McLaren.

08:43 Sam Tremayne is arguing that no one could possibly be bored by our in-depth descriptions of marshals' activities during red flags. He may be right, but it's still worth reading those AUTOSPORT Plus features.

08:44 Actually, Button wasn't starting a flying lap, as he heads straight back into the pits.

08:44 Meanwhile a 1m21.756s moves Ricciardo up to second and it's a Red Bull-employed-Australian one-two.

08:45 Ricciardo goes quickest now on a 1m21.124s.

08:46 So the Red Bull-employed-Australian one-two is inverted.

08:46 Webber heads back out for Red Bull.

08:46 Will he immediately take revenge on his young compatriot and steal the top spot back?

08:46 It's testing, not a pole fight, we realise... But let us hype up some drama, it's cold here.

08:47 Another red flag, that's two in the opening 47 minutes.

08:47 Again it doesn't seem to be a problem with a car, Webber and Kovalainen are back in the pits.

08:47 Teams suggesting oil on track is the cause.

08:49 So you can either stick around and read our blow-by-blow account of what Spanish marshals do to mop up, or head to AUTOSPORT Plus during the lull and check out @eddstrawF1's trackside analysis from day one.

08:50 In the break, a word from Caterham's chief technical officer @MikeGascoyne: "Second red flag of the day. Heikki using KERS successfully on the last run, now back in the pits"

08:50 Official track report says red flag was for a circuit check... It's green now and there was precious little sign of marshal activity during the stoppage.

08:50 Much to our disappointment, as we were quite getting into 'Marshal Watch'.

08:51 Bianchi the only driver on track right now - maybe the others haven't noticed it went green again so quickly.

08:51 More aero work for Bianchi, who comes past at half-speed.

08:52 Despite the stoppages, the running we have achieved so far - plus of course the fact the sun is now fully out - has pushed track temperature up to 9.4 degrees.

08:52 Which is still cold.

08:53 Medium tyres for Massa as he heads out - the Brazilian yet to set a proper time this morning.

08:53 Bianchi comes straight through the pits and heads back out.

08:54 With Massa on track, here's a reminder of what Ferrari thought about its first day of action with the less-than-pretty F2012:

Ferrari pleased with initial progress

08:55 Webber is rejoining to resume that all-Australian showdown at the front we were creating some top-spun excitement about before the latest red flag.

08:56 Not a bad first effort for Massa, a 1m21.418s, which puts him second.

08:56 That's 1.4s faster than his best Tuesday time.

08:56 What a difference a day makes.

08:57 Maldonado, on medium tyres, heads out for Williams.

08:57 Bianchi in and out again.

08:57 He may be doing mundane work right now, but the fact Force India has put Bianchi in the car so early in the testing programme shows how seriously it is taking his third driver role.

08:58 Webber breaks the 1m21s barrier, going almost 0.4s clear of Ricciardo now.

08:59 Another new benchmark for Webber - a 1m20.641s.

08:59 Now half a second clear of Ricciardo.

08:59 Schumacher comes out for Mercedes.

09:01 The times are still a second off yesterday's best, but the circuit is still heating up and rubbering up.

09:02 Raikkonen's spectacular 1m19.6s benchmark on Tuesday was achieved just before 11am local time.

09:02 Massa on cruise control past the pits, but Webber is not hanging around - he dives around the outside at Turn 3.

09:02 Maldonado has improved his time to 1m26.063s in the Williams.

09:03 Just past the one-hour mark and Webber is on top on a 1m20.641s, with Ricciardo, Massa, Kovalainen, Maldonado and Raikkonen next up.

09:03 Schumacher has just done a tentative 1m34.897s for his first 'flying' lap.

09:03 And we haven't yet seen times from Force India, HRT, Sauber or McLaren, though Bianchi has done 14 laps of out/in aero work for Force India.

09:04 Button now sets a personal best of 1m21.604s to go fourth.

09:05 Raikkonen gravel news from @StrangAutosport: Raikkonen went off at Turn 6, Dry Sac, where the debris that caused the first red flag was found, He came back at walking pace but scraped the bottom of the Lotus on the kerbing.

09:05 Button takes second with a 1m20.727s.

09:05 Just 0.086s off Webber's top time.

09:05 Red Bull and McLaren locking horns again in a fight for the top spot.

09:05 Maldonado has edged up to 1m25.930s in the Williams.

09:06 At the front, the McLaren is faster than the Red Bull in sector one at present.

09:07 Anyone screaming "calm down it's only testing" as we get excited about Webber and Button being 0.086s apart... just wait till two cars are running close together on track and looking like they might dice a bit, we'll probably really annoy you with enthusiasm then.

09:07 Button's next time through was a 1m21.4s.

09:08 Another instance of cruise control as Perez idles down the main straight.

09:08 Button now sets a 1m21.885s.

09:08 Perez's time was a 1m37s as he does slow evaluation running.

09:09 This morning is the Mexican's first go in the 2012 Sauber, but here's what his team-mate Kobayashi thought about it yesterday:

Kobayashi: C31 faster than predecessor

09:10 And if that gets you bristling with Sauber fever, and you're an AUTOSPORT Plus subscriber, you can read more about how the team creates a competitive car on a midfield budget in @eddstrawF1's feature here:

Making a successful budget F1 car

09:10 Button is now back in the pits. Interestingly, he set the fastest trap speed anyone has yet recorded in sector three.

09:10 Kovalainen and Maldonado are the men on track now.

09:11 It's Caterham versus Williams - Kovalainen closing on the back of Maldonado.

09:12 So we've had Webber versus Ricciardo in a ferocious battle at the front for a Red Bull future (maybe...), McLaren versus Red Bull dicing for the top spot, and now an on-track battle that could be a metaphor for a fight for ninth in the constructors' (on 2011 form)... Thrilling stuff this morning isn't it?

09:12 Maldonado sets a personal best time of 1m24.887s but still loses ground, and as Kovalainen closes he cedes position on the exit of Turn 3.

09:12 We should've learned by now that on-track battles in testing tend to fizzle out before we've had time to really get excited by them.

09:13 Maldonado comes in, it's just Kovalainen on track.

09:14 This is what Force India is up to, info from @clubforce: "The morning is a continuation of yesterday's programme. It's all about getting miles on the car and as much data as possible."

09:15 That schedule went went for Force India yesterday - Paul di Resta ended up a close second to Raikkonen.

09:15 Maldonado returns to the track but - by chance or design - he's at the opposite end of the circuit to Kovalainen.

09:15 Ricciardo and Perez set out for Toro Rosso and Sauber.

09:16 Both came out just ahead of Kovalainen, who made short work of scything his way past at Expo and Michelin.

09:17 Slight improvement from Ricciardo, who does a 1m21.048s. He stays third.

09:17 If you haven't done so yet, take a browse at the AUTOSPORT Facebook page.

09:18 Good pace and consistency from Kovalainen, who clocks a 1m23.095s. 17 laps for Caterham so far.

09:19 And now a new overall best from Ricciardo, who sets a 1m20.307s to depose Webber by 0.3s.

09:19 The Toro Rosso was fastest so far in sectors one and two.

09:19 With perfect timing, Gael Quiniou from Reunion Island (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R%C3%A9union) has a question about Daniel Ricciardo. "Is he that good?" he asks. "He wasn't much better than Tonio Liuzzi last year in the HRT and Liuzzi is hardly a benchmark so why drop Jaime Alguersuari in favour of him?"

09:21 Here's what our F1 editor @eddstrawF1 reckons: "It's very early days for Ricciardo. He's clearly a very quick racing driver who has won throughout the junior ranks and he made a very big impression on Red Bull Racing during his test outings. I'd be very wary about trying to draw too many conclusions from his 11 outings with HRT last year. In the circumstances, I thought he did a good job. Liuzzi has F1 race experience stretching back to 2005 and has within him the ability to be extremely fast, even if ultimately he never seemed to be able to convert his talent into consistent performances. When Daniel first raced for HRT at Silverstone, he showed glimpses of Liuzzi-matching pace even though he didn't string it all together. As the season went on, he became more consistently quick and considering he was thrown in at the deep end, that was a good start in difficult circumstances.

"Red Bull has monitored progress very carefully with all of its drivers. Daniel wouldn't have been put into Toro Rosso without doing a convincing job at HRT and I find it difficult to have too much sympathy for Jaime Alguersuari or Sebastien Buemi being dropped to make way for him and Vergne. They've had two-and-a-half and three seasons in F1 respectively and shown themselves to be decent grand prix drivers. But they are not great ones and that is what Red Bull is looking for.

"Certainly, Ricciardo is at least a good grand prix driver in the making. If he or Vergne truly excel, they will be at Red Bull's a team before too long, so over the next year or two we will see just how good both are. I haven't seen anything in Ricciardo to say he is a potential great like Vettel, but there appears to be enough potential there for him to become a grand prix-winning driver in the future at least if he makes the most of himself. That said, Vergne perhaps has the harder edge, which will serve him well."

09:21 Ricciardo follows that up with a 1m20.6s, but it doesn't take Webber long to respond - he goes fastest again.

09:21 The Red Bull drivers sets 'purple' times in all three sectors as he laps in 1m19.682s.

09:22 That is just 0.012s slower than the fastest lap we have seen so far at Jerez.

09:22 Webber was certainly upbeat when he finished his first day of running in the RB8 yesterday:

Webber: New rules won't hurt Red Bull

09:23 And his boss was pretty happy with him too...

Horner: Webber now stronger

09:23 Compared to Ricciardo's best lap, Webber found a lot of time in sector three, a nice mix of twisty corners and one long straight.

09:23 A sector that will appeal to cars that are good at basically everything - as recent Red Bulls have tended to be.

09:24 Another 1m19s from Webber, this time with a new overall best in sector two.

09:24 That lap was 0.2s off his previous best but still quicker than anyone else has been today.

09:25 Kovalainen and Schumacher are out with Webber now. Schumacher recently set a 1m23.328s to go sixth.

09:25 You can email live@autosport.com if you have questions for either our special guest Bruno Senna or our teams of reporters at Jerez.

09:26 And we'll get round to answering some of them too...

09:27 Ulco Ferwerda from the Netherlands asks: "Jarno Trulli has only one day of testing and Giedo van der Garde will be in the car on Thursday. I don't understand why Heikki Kovalainen has two days and Jarno Trulli just one. Seems strange to me."

@eddstrawF1's view: "It's no secret that Jarno's drive was up for grabs for a driver with a bit of experience and a big budget and both Daniel Ricciardo and Vitaly Petrov had deals agreed in principle that didn't happen for various reasons. Giedo has good backing and has shown himself to be a handy driver in categories like GP2 and Formula 3 and has brought some backing to the team, so it's logical he will get some mileage.

"Jarno has a bit to prove, but apparently he is very up for it and ready to prove that he can still deliver that incredible turn of speed we know is within him. Van der Garde potentially has the cash to take the seat later in the year so he has the chance here and in future test/practice runs to show that he can bring performance, as well as sponsorship, to the team. That means Jarno needs to be on his game if he is to keep the seat longer term."

09:28 Perez came past on half-chat again there, and as Kovalainen dives back into the pits after a short run, we have a quiet track with just a cruising Sauber on it.

09:30 Perez comes in too.

09:30 Time for another question from the live@autosport.com basket.

Arun has a question about the effect of the new rules on the blown diffuser. "Are McLaren, Red Bull and Ferrari struggling to find their pace compared to Renault," he says. "And how far is the platypus nose going to affect the aerodynamics of the 2012 car? Are there any alternate designs?"

Here are the thoughts of @eddstrawF1: "The ban on exhaust blown diffusers is pretty big given the amount of downforce generated by those systems, which made it a huge performance differentiator last year. Impossible to say right now who is most affected because we're still in early days. On paper, Red Bull is hurt most because its system was particularly good last year, although I'm not convinced that McLaren was giving much away. It's all about clawing back as much of that downforce as possible and given the fact that most teams have variations on their 2012 exhausts to try it could be a while before we see an accurate picture.

"As for the pace, I wouldn't worry about that. Kimi was given freedom to push as he dials himself back into F1 and there's nothing to say that the Lotus is suddenly the fastest car (although that can't be ruled out just yet). The important thing is that Kimi is still quick!"

09:31 If you want your questions answered by our reporters or this morning's special guest Bruno Senna - who we expect to join us around the lunchtime lull - email live@autosport.com.

09:32 Oliver Heycoop wants to know why there aren't more cars here. "I have wondered why teams don't bring two cars to the test. Surely they would gather more data?"

@eddstrawF1 explains all: "Absolutely right Oliver, they would gather much more data and would love to have more cars. But testing restrictions brought in over the years have mandated single-car tests. In total, the available running is limited to 15 days of single-car running (this year that means 12 pre-season and three at Mugello in May) along with four straightline test days. There is also a three-day young driver test, which last year took place between the Abu Dhabi and Brazilian Grands Prix. The days of infinite testing are long gone, and for good reason given the costs involved."

09:32 In this lull, want to see the g-force in a two-seater F1 car? Of course you do.

09:34 Here's a video courtesy of @LucasdiGrassi: Unbelievable G-Forces in an F1 car

09:34 And here's a rare sight so far today: de la Rosa heads out for HRT. Only his second lap of the day.

09:34 Bianchi is also out for Force India.

09:36 Here's Bianchi's first proper lap of the day: a 1m21.605s to go fifth.

09:37 The Ferrari protege turned Force India aspirant has completed more laps than anyone else this morning - 19 - but has mostly been cruising on evaluation runs.

09:38 As di Resta and Hulkenberg have shown, the Force India number three seat isn't just a fundraising irrelevance as some teams' reserve roles arguable are - it's a direct line to a future race seat if you impress.

09:38 So every opportunity counts for Bianchi this year, especially as the big reputation the Frenchman built in in F3 was dented a little in GP2.

09:39 Ability-to-count failure on AUTOSPORT Live's part... Kovalainen, not Bianchi, has been our busiest man so far today with 24 laps for Caterham.

09:39 And while we were hanging our heads in numerical shame, Bianchi improved to 1m21.312s, staying fourth. Maldonado also went quicker than before with a 1m22.538s in seventh place.

09:40 Plenty of green on the screen - both Bianchi and Maldonado go quicker still.

09:40 Bianchi is now on 1m20.889s - still fourth but within 0.1s of Button.

09:40 While Maldonado grabs sixth from Kovalainen with a 1m22.184s.

09:42 Crowded circuit now: we have Toro Rosso, Force India, Mercedes, Ferrari, Williams and Caterham on the track.

09:42 Nice touch of understeer from Ricciardo as he comes through Turn 3.

09:42 Bianchi back into the pits after that good first proper run.

09:43 He backed off for two of his five laps, so we can't get a realistic average for you, but his flying laps went 21.6, 21.3, 20.8.

09:44 'Green' (that's a new personal best) for Kovalainen in sector one, but the lap peters out and ends in a 1m24.997s.

09:44 Schumacher improves though, with a 1m20.960s in fifth place.

09:46 Our editor @StrangAutosport has been having intriguing chats with important people: "Interesting, speaking to Lotus, just how galvanised the team is behind Kimi Raikkonen. He's really winning them over."

09:47 Proof that the ideal course of action for a team with a brilliant but demotivated F1 driver is to pack them off to rallying for two years so they realise what they're missing...

09:47 We now have more than enough questions to put to today's special guest Bruno Senna, so we're declaring "lines closed" on Ask Bruno.

09:47 But you can still email live@autosport.com with questions for our on-the-spot team at Jerez, and we'll have more special guests later in the week.

09:48 Bruno will join us to go through your questions later this morning.

09:48 We're now coming to around the time when yesterday's best times were set.

09:48 Although we still haven't seen much from yesterday's main man Raikkonen.

09:49 The Finn has completed just five laps today, having run wide and damaged the underside of his Lotus at Dry Sac.

09:49 Here's what Raikkonen had to say last night about his blistering return to F1 action:

Raikkonen: Times not important yet

09:50 But surely, Kimi, even an Iceman would've looked at yesterday morning's results and thought "that'll do for my first day back"...?

09:50 Now just Kovalainen and Maldonado on the circuit.

09:51 Pacesetter Webber's last appearance was 25 minutes ago, when he banged in his two 1m19s laps in a short run.

09:51 Button has only done one run of flying laps today - a four-lap stint averaging 1m21.4s.

09:51 Massa has shown a little more pace than yesterday for Ferrari but doesn't seem to have been unleashed yet - 1m23s and 1m22s mostly for him so far when not on slow-speed runs.

09:52 And rapid stuff from Toro Rosso: Ricciardo's last two runs were four-lap blasts in 1m20s and 1m21s.

09:52 Kovalainen is still plugging away as he comes round for his 31st lap of the day.

09:53 His recent 1m22.717s included a personal best in sector three. The Caterham is eighth with a 1m22.682s at present.

09:53 Now he improves to 1m22.218s, staying eighth.

09:54 Kovalainen had recorded personal bests in sector three for three straight laps before really nailing it and registering that improvement.

09:54 Exciting special guest news coming up...

09:55 After Bruno Senna joins us, we'll have a second guest to answer your questions today in the shape of Lotus driver Romain Grosjean.

09:55 So if you want Grosjean's thoughts on his second chance in F1, Lotus's prospects, life alongside Raikkonen, or any other query, email live@autosport.com and we'll put a selection of the best questions to the GP2 champion and F1 returnee later today.

09:56 Webber rejoins in the Red Bull to keep Kovalainen and Perez company.

09:56 A burst of speed from Perez as the Sauber does a 1m21.882s and vaults to seventh.

09:56 That lap skimmed almost a second off his previous best.

09:58 New personal best from Perez in sector one, but then he backs off.

09:59 Two hours down, here's where they stand...

10:00 Webber quickest by 0.6s over Ricciardo, with Button, Bianchi, Schumacher, Massa, Perez, Maldonado, Kovalainen and Raikkonen completing the list.

10:00 De la Rosa has yet to set a time for HRT.

10:00 Kovalainen has the most mileage so far with 37 laps already, then Maldonado on 31 and Bianchi on 27.

10:00 Just 2 laps for de la Rosa, and only 5 for Raikkonen before he damaged his Lotus a little with a trip off the road.

10:01 Perez gets down to a 1m21.667s but stays seventh.

10:02 Quickfire trio as Perez, Bianchi and Webber come past less than 5s apart.

10:02 Webber picks off Bianchi at the Sito Pons corner.

10:03 De la Rosa also heads back out for HRT.

10:03 And he's on the board, de la Rosa registers a 1m26.330s for his first attempt.

10:04 Which means the man who was first this time yesterday - Raikkonen - is now propping up the timesheets, having completed just five laps before his excursion.

10:05 De la Rosa improves to 1m25.128s.

10:07 Kankshit Bharos has asked @eddstrawf1 one of his least favourite questions, based upon judging performance from testing times. Fortunately, he gets away with it by starting off with a disclaimer. "First test day times are almost irrelevant," says Kankshit. "But the pace Kimi Raikkonen set yesterday hasn't been touched yet. Is this a sign for the season that Lotus and Force India will be the dark horses in 2012?"

Edd says... "The headline times are pretty irrelevant but it's fair to conclude that Lotus and Force India have proved they have a decent package upon which to build. Lotus's programme was distorted by the fact the team wanted to send Raikkonen out an push on as he re-acclimatised to F1 and the important thing is that he resembles the old Kimi in terms of on-track commitment.

"The Force India has looked good as well, although at times didn't look great on slow corner traction on the power, but it seems that both have made decent starts for testing. As far as dark horse goes, it's hard to see either team suddenly emerging as title contenders, but certainly I don't think fans of the teams and drivers concerned should be fearing the worst based on the sketchy evidence seen so far."

10:07 De la Rosa improves again to a 1m24.736s.

10:07 Still more than 5s off the pace, but HRT will be pleased to get some running in, even in the 2011 car.

10:08 And it's good mileage for de la Rosa too, whose Canadian GP cameo with Sauber last year was his only F1 outing apart from Pirelli tests since he lost his last race seat in September 2010.

10:08 Maldonado heads out for Williams.

10:09 And now Massa comes out for Ferrari.

10:10 Burst of Caterham-based Twitter info coming up...

10:11 @MyCaterhamF1: "A couple of adjustments to the front wing angle and rear ride height for the next run."

10:11 @MikeGascoyne: "Heikki set his best time towards the end of a 10 lap run. Now looking at some basic set up sweeps to see how the car behaves. 38 laps done"

10:11 Webber's turn to join the fray.

10:11 Plenty of green on the screen for Maldonado as he gets down to a 1m21.529s.

10:12 That lap included personal bests in sectors 2 and 3, and at the sector 1 speed trap to boot.

10:12 The Williams is now seventh, and Maldonado has managed 33 laps - already eight more than he managed in all of day one.

10:13 Williams was calm about its subdued Tueday, though:

Williams confident of Jerez progress

10:14 A reminder that we're no longer taking questions for Wednesday special guest #1 Bruno Senna as we have an abundance, but you can email live@autosport.com with questions for Romain Grosjean, who will be popping in this afternoon.

10:14 Webber sets the quickest time of the day so far, a 1m19.459s.

10:14 That puts him 0.8s clear of Ricciardo, and is 0.2s ahead of Raikkonen's Tuesday benchmark.

10:14 The Red Bull RB8 is stretching its legs.

10:16 Raikkonen gravel aftermath update from @Lotus_F1Team: "As we have the E20 in the garage, we've decided to change the steering rack at the same time."

10:17 Another 1m19s from Webber - this time a 1m19.769s. The Red Bull is looking nailed to the circuit.

10:18 After that quick spurt, Webber ducks back into the pits. Job done.

10:18 Two 1m19s broken up by a 1m27s, was that a qualifying-style run?

10:19 Impossible to know in testing what the teams are doing with fuel loads, so we can only take guesses from the length of their outings.

10:20 A temporary calm settles on Jerez, as Maldonado and Massa pull into the pits and leave the track empty.

10:20 Good news: The Pedro de la Rosa fans from yesterday are back in the main grandstand and have just unfurled their 20-foot banner.

10:21 There's not a lot of activity in the pitlane either, with most of the cars and the engineers in the garages.

10:21 But it's not a total brunch break, because here comes Perez to break the still.

10:22 Glad that Sauber's come out before we started analysing the maths AUTOSPORT's Sam Tremayne uses to estimate banner length from significant distance away.

10:23 Ricciardo joins Perez on track.

10:25 Bianchi sets off again for Force India.

10:26 Ricciardo clocks a 1m21.418s, a second off his earlier best.

10:26 So we can't quite get excited about a titanic Red Bull Australian bare knuckle fight for the testing day two top spot right now.

10:27 Compared to Webber, Ricciardo lost about half a second in sectors 1 and 3, and a second in sector 2.

10:27 The RB8 does look mighty in that middle sector.

10:27 Ricciardo picks up his pace and does a 1m20.740s.

10:28 Who wants to see a picture of Raikkonen driving a Lotus F1 car a little like a rally car...?

10:28 One is coming right up as fast as AUTOSPORT Live's photo editing software can carry it...

10:29 Button and McLaren have been quiet today, just 10 laps so far, though that was enough to put the Briton third. He now heads back out.

10:29 Webber is setting off again too.

10:29 Short - and very quick - qualifying-style blasts from Webber on his last two runs. What will he deliver this time?

10:31 As we've mentioned, yesterday's pacesetter Raikkonen has spent most of the morning in the pits after an early visit to the gravel did some damage to the Lotus. And here's that picture of the incident we just got so excited over.

10:32 Button and Ricciardo pit, while Kovalainen improves to a 1m21.518s with new personal bests in sectors 2 and 3.

10:32 Webber is really cranking it up - he lowers today's top time to a 1m19.184s.

10:32 Red Bull has the RB8 dialled in, it seems.

10:32 The champion team and its revitalised Aussie are now 1.1s clear of the pack.

10:32 That's a storming time in sector 1 from Webber, the only driver under 19s there.

10:33 And of course another blinding sector two time, almost two tenths faster than his previous best.

10:33 And while we were hailing Webber's effort, that simultaneous improvement from Kovalainen took him ahead of Maldonado and Perez into seventh.

10:34 Webber has backed right off... but on his last run he then went for a second flying lap.

10:35 Schumacher is back out again too. Remember Mercedes is the only top team running a 2011 car here. It has chosen to have another two weeks in the factory finetuning the new design before the next test, so is focusing on tyre data here.

10:35 Sure enough, Webber delivers another quick lap - a 1m19.8s. Also faster than anyone else has managed so far today.

10:36 Webber now comes back into the pits.

10:37 Perez follows him, leaving Schumacher, Maldonado and Kovalainen on the track.

10:37 New personal best from Maldonado, he does a 1m21.197s to vault Massa and Kovalainen and go sixth. Encouraging for Williams.

10:41 A question to live@autosport.com from Scott Layzell: "Hi Guys, Many thanks for the excellent live coverage, it really is fascinating. [Thanks Scott!] Just a quick question Are Mercedes running any obvious new parts, is there any drastic changes from last year that could be from the new car??"

10:42 Sam Tremayne's answer: "No - at least nothing worthy of note. There may be a few aerodynamic tweaks, but nothing substantial. What we see is basically their 2011 car."

10:42 And given that Sam can tell you the exact length of a Pedro de la Rosa fan banner from half a circuit away, if there was something new on the Merc, he'd spot it.

10:43 Button is now back out again in the McLaren.

10:44 A personal best for Button in sector one, but he backs it way off in the next two corners and comes round in 1m23.015s.

10:45 1m21.329s this time around for Button, that's 0.6s off his current best of the day.

10:47 Another low 1m21s for Button, but he's not making any inroads on Webber at the front.

10:47 Kovalainen comes in, leaving just Button out on track...

10:47 ...then immediately goes back out again, just in case Button was getting lonely.

10:47 And now they have Ricciardo for company too.

10:49 The Iceman returneth, Kimi is finally back out for Lotus.

10:49 The E20 has had a good hoover, check and steering rack change since Raikkonen took it through the Dry Sac gravel early this morning.

10:50 Bruno Senna is on his way up to join us to answer your questions.

10:50 Please don't send anymore, we already have a bulging clipboard.

10:51 But you can keep emailing live@autosport.com with questions for this afternoon's special guest Romain Grosjean, and for our expert team in the paddock.

10:51 Ricciardo closes on Webber at the front with a 1m19.667s.

10:52 Ricciardo then goes quicker still with a 1m19.605s.

10:52 While Raikkonen is straight down to business with a 1m21.223s.

10:53 That puts the Lotus sixth.

10:53 And now he's up to fifth on a 1m20.951s.

10:54 (No one spotted that we just briefly mixed up Ricciardo and Raikkonen, did you? You didn't? Oh good)

10:54 So to clarify, the gap at the front between Webber and Ricciardo is down to 0.421s, while Raikkonen is back on track and up to fifth after this morning's gravel excursion and consequent delay.

10:55 Webber is coming back out again. If he goes for another flat-out run, might we see a 1m18s time?

10:55 New personal best for Massa, who gets down to a 1m21.060s.

10:56 Doesn't seem to be one particular area where Ferrari is struggling for speed, the car has a consistent deficit in all three sectors. But it is of course early days.

10:57 We were all looking at Webber, but Schumacher just went to the top.

10:57 The Mercedes - a 2011 car, remember - just lapped in 1m18.622s.

10:58 That's the first 1m18s lap of the week and 0.5s quicker than Webber.

10:58 Also significantly quicker than any 2011 car went last winter, though of course the Mercedes has had a year of development since.

10:58 Bruno Senna is now with us and ready to answer your questions.

10:59 While he gets comfortable in the AUTOSPORT Live hotseat, a quicker midday local time round-up...

10:59 Schumacher fastest in the 2011 Mercedes by 0.5s over Webber, then Ricciardo, Button, Bianchi, Raikkonen, Massa, Maldonado, Perez, Kovalainen and de la Rosa.

10:59 Kovalainen has the top lap tally at 54, followed by Maldonado on 45 and Webber on 41.

11:00 De la Rosa has done just 9, Raikkonen only 12 after filling his Lotus with gravel for a while.

11:00 And now over to a man who was driving that Lotus when it was called a Renault not so long ago...

11:00 Incidentally, and sorry Bruno, Schumacher is still out and banging in quick times, with a 1m19.159s that time by.

11:01 And Perez practically rolls past the media centre - in a moving slowly way rather than airborne...

11:01 New best from Bianchi, who goes fourth on a 1m20.221s.

Bruno Senna11:02 Senna Moeskops asks "As this is your first winter test in F1, how do you prepare yourself to give the team the necessary feedback about the new car?"

Bruno says: "The most important thing was to have lots of meetings with the engineers and to get to know the team and the car as well as possible. Then you know which points to focus on more when you drive the car depending on how the team works. It's important to understand where the team is strong so it has been useful to talk to the team and to try to address the most important points. Technically we have been very well briefed and hopefully we have a nice base to build from tomorrow."

11:04 On track, Schumacher has now pitted. His was a short run of laps in 18.6, 19.5 and 19.1.

11:05 And back to Bruno Senna...

11:06 Johnny in Macedonia asks "How do you prepare before going out on track? Do you perform any rituals like prayer, meditation, visualisation or do you maybe just listen to music?

Bruno Senna: "Whenever you sit down to get into the zone, if you think too much about the driving, it's bad news. As soon as I put the helmet on I am in the zone."

11:06 Just as well Bruno is here to chat to as now it's just Kovalainen's Caterham on a quiet track at Jerez.

11:07 Schumacher now comes back out too. Will we see another rapid time from the current leader?

11:08 Clare from Bath asks "Do you have a picture to share of your manager [Chris Goodwin] when he used to have hair?"

Bruno Senna: "Nice question! I don't actually, but I'm sure that I can find one and post it to you guys!"

11:09 'Long time Williams fan' Stratos Filalithis asks "What is the best race you have ever watched, excluding those you have participated in, in any category and why?"

Bruno Senna: "There are quite a few. The old classic races in the 1980s were very good because the cars broke down, the tyre strategies played a big part and cars could come from eighth to win a race. Some of Ayrton's races in the wet were very special like Brazil in 1993 and also Donington that year."

11:10 An emphatic answer from Schumacher - a new fastest lap in 1m18.561s.

11:10 He extends his advantage over Webber to 0.623s.

11:11 An entire band of random Spaniards has just marched through the press centre with cameras. Looking for someone famous? No, they've just walked out through the other door... Peace descends once more.

11:12 Another low 1m19s for Schumacher, relentless stuff.

11:13 Senna versus Schumacher vying for AUTOSPORT Live attention, but one's sat here answering questions and one's banging in fast times...

11:15 Good news for Clare from Bath, Karun Chandhok has found a photo of Senna's manager Chris Goodwin with hair.

11:16 Peter Vamosi asks "Do numbers have any special meaning for you? Ayrton had 19 in the Toleman and you'll have 19 this year?"

Bruno Senna: "No, I don't have any number superstitions at all. When it's number one, that's when the number will be special!"

11:16 Raikkonen improves with a 1m20.239s. He stays fifth.

11:17 Bigger crowd here today - the pit end of the grandstand is about a third full.

11:17 Kovalainen, Button and Ricciardo all head out. While de la Rosa improves his personal best to 1m24.202s.

11:18 A long-time AUTOSPORT reader from India called Karun Chandhok asks: "Do you still shave your legs?"

Bruno Senna: "Ha! No, I don't. I should though. Every time I have physiotherapy, all of that hair hurts. Karun should know about that, he should shave his whole body because he'll lose about two kilos!"

11:19 We have a feeling those two probably know each other...

11:19 De la Rosa trims his best time to 1m23.741s, surely delighting the Spanish crowd.

11:19 A little further up, de la Rosa's old employer McLaren goes quicker as Button improves to a 1m20.688s.

11:20 And an improvement from Ricciardo too, as the Australian clocks a 1m19.587s. He stays third - that time just 0.018s quicker than his previous best.

11:20 @StrangAutosport is distressed to admit that he can remember writing about Chris Goodwin for the Kent Messenger when he still looked like the picture linked below...

11:21 Meanwhile Button - who another branch of AUTOSPORT Live wrote about for the Western Gazette when he was fresher-faced - backed off to a 1m26s after his quick lap.

11:21 Schumacher, the man of the moment, heads back out.

11:22 Sorry Bruno, we'll get back to you now...

11:23 @thegayle asks: "Do you get nervous at all driving for Williams given the history with your uncle?"

Bruno Senna: "No, not at all. I'm very excited about driving for these guys. They have a great history, my family is very excited about it so I am very much looking forward to it. Hopefully it will be nice new chapter."

11:23 By the way, anyone wondering who Chris Goodwin is... he is a one-time British Touring Car independents' cup race-winner, McLaren test driver and Bruno Senna's full-time manager. And as we have demonstrated on AUTOSPORT Live today, he once had more hair.

11:24 "Box Kimi, Box" is the call from @Lotus_F1Team, and the Finn duly obliges.

11:25 Force India driver plans update from @clubforce: "@Jules_Bianchi about to do his final run before @pauldirestaf1 takes over. Great job by Jules so far"

11:26 Phillipe from Belgium asks "Will you have a Brazilian flag with you in the car like Ayrton did?"

Bruno Senna: "Ayrton had to grab a flag from the marshals! I don't think the team would be very happy with me if I had one and it came up in my face when I was driving!"

11:26 Button dives into the pits after a four-lap run.

11:27 He started that stint with a 1m20.6s, slowed to 1m26s while AUTOSPORT Live was reminiscing about UK local newspapers, then got back down to 1m21.3s and 1m21.6s.

11:27 Bianchi is back out again in the Force India (and simultaneously retweeting - good use of the tweet button on the steering wheel). A solid morning for the Frenchman, who has completed 40 laps and currently lies fourth.

11:28 More from Bruno Senna coming up...

11:28 Borislav Kostov from Bulgaria asks :"What do you think about the future of F1 regulations and rule tweaks with the nose really do it for the fans?"

Bruno Senna: "Formula 1 is about image as much as about competition so it's important for the fans to look at the car and admire it. Sometimes you see some really beautiful cars and the regulations change. But you get used to it. And in terms of competition, the rules are making better racing."

11:29 Webber heads back out in the RB8.

11:30 Sebastian from Slovenia asks: "In what way and to what extent do you follow F1 news on a daily basis?"

Bruno Senna: "I try not to read F1 news. I try to keep up with the team's rules. It's very easy to get caught up reading the news and not concentrate on what is going on iin the paddock. It's better to focus on the news in the paddock."

@eddstrawf1: "There's a very good website called www.autosport.com I can recommend."

Bruno: "I go there every once in a while but there are some dodgy people there!"

11:31 Josef Grech from Malta asks "During your driving career, during a race or qualifying, have you ever thought of your uncle and said 'Yes I do it for him'?"

Bruno Senna: "No. That's not how it works. I race because I love racing not because I'm trying to bring back Ayrton's memories. But when I won GP2 in Monaco in 2008 I remembered Ayrton because it is a special place. Sometimes that happens, but it comes after, not before."

11:32 On track now, Schumacher, Webber, Bianchi, Massa and Kovalainen.

11:32 While Karun Chandhok replies to Bruno Senna's suggestion that shaving his legs would get 2kg off the Indian's weight: "Too manly for that... unlike him"

11:33 @StrangAutosport steps in with an editorial request that we stop discussing Chandhok's body hair.

11:33 Let's talk about Chandhok's sometime team's tyre programme instead, that's less hairy...

11:34 @HRTF1Team: "End of the tests with medium tyres. Now changes on the set-up and it'll be time for the softs."

11:34 No improvements on track at the moment, but we'll keep you abreast of any incidents and do some stint recaps after we've finished putting your questions to our special guest Bruno Senna.

11:35 Bogata from Hungary asks "Have you talked to Rubens Barrichello about your new seat and, if so, what did he say to you?"

Bruno Senna: "Yes. I spoke to him when the team decided to take me on board. It was a bit of an awkward chat because we are friends and it's a difficult situation but Rubens is very experienced and knows how sport works. He has been great. We had a nice chat and he wished me all the best and I wish him all of the best."

11:36 Busy track now with Kovalainen, Schumacher, Massa and Webber all pounding round.

11:36 And busy press room as the crowd of Spaniards return. There are now more Spanish punters in the media centre than trackside.

11:36 We're certain the circuit is more interesting...

11:36 Out goes Button in the McLaren.

Senna F3 crash11:39 Glenn Freeman asks: "What do you have against AUTOSPORT journalists? Remember what happened at Snetterton in British Formula 3 when you threw your car at me and [then AUTOSPORT man] Richard Asher?"

Bruno Senna: "They had written some bad things about me and I was trying to hit them at over 200km/h! I didn't manage it because they saw me as you can see from the picture! Glenn is at least prepared to move, Richard is just looking at the car asking 'what is that?'"

11:39 Just to reassure anyone glancing at AUTOSPORT Live and seeing that picture, it hasn't just happened in F1 testing...

11:40 It was an F3 crash at Snetterton in 2006. There is no Sunday market happening in the background at Jerez today...

11:40 Maldonado heads out with Ricciardo right behind him.

11:41 Ferrari news from @InsideFerrari: "Another run completed, more data acquired. Still a lot of work to do, which will totally fill the job list today and in the next two days."

11:42 @f1_seat4senna asks "Are you aware of the growing support for him on twitter by fans sites such as @f1_seat4senna and do accounts like this help you to see the support he has?"

Bruno Senna: "Yeah. I've been following the progress on that. They have been getting more and more supporters every time. My Twitter account has also grown since I signed for Williams as well. I've been trying to post a lot on Twitter, but sometimes have to hold back contentious information about what I had for dinner! And I don't post personal stuff on Twitter about what I had for breakfast, it's for the information on motor racing."

@eddstrawf1: "What did you have for breakfast this morning?"

Bruno: "Cereal, honey and fruit!"

11:43 Don't forget we have another special guest this afternoon - Romain Grosjean. Email live@autosport.com with any questions you have for the Lotus man.

11:44 Ademir B Junior asks "You have spent a lot of time working in the factory. How have you integrated with your new team, in particular with Tom McCullough your race engineer?"

Bruno Senna: "It has been very straightforward. Sometimes you get to work with people who aren't compatible but Tom has been extremely welcoming and nice. We are getting along very well and trying to learn as much as possible from each other. These guys have great experience which is very important for me. We have been talking about procedures I've learned in the past from other teams so I'm trying to give as much of what I know to them as well. Tomorrow, let's hope Tom isn't too frustrated when I get in the car!"

11:44 Rogerio Tuxen from Santa Catarina in Brazil asks: "Do you think that the improvements with this year’s Williams will allow you to fight for victories?"

Bruno Senna: "It's difficult to say. It's very early days for testing. I definitely hope that we can fight for points. If we can fight for victories, that would be absolutely stunning but we have to take it step by step. Points are the main goal."

11:45 Kovalainen comes down the pitlane and heads for a practice start at the exit.

11:45 A new personal best from Raikkonen in sector three, but no improvement in his overall time. The Lotus stays fifth.

11:46 Daniel Pettit asks: "How much input does a driver get on the test programme the team follows?"

Bruno Senna: "Actually more than I ever imagined. Today we have been looking at a few different bits and pieces while Pastor is driving and even looking at the data can help you to learn some things. Once you drive the car you can start learning what the deficiencies are from a driver's perspective and you can start having input in terms of leadership. If the driver can be a good leader for the team, it's a great motivator."

11:46 Another improvement from de la Rosa - who, as promised by Twitter, is now on soft tyres. He gets down to 1m23.468s in the HRT and is now within 2s of Kovalainen's Caterham.

11:48 James Newbold asks "You haven’t been up against a really experienced team-mate yet (except for Christian Klien briefly). Would it help you to have a more experienced team-mate to learn from?"

Bruno Senna:
"I'm sure that in the first year it helps a lot to have an experienced team-mate. But I have worked with Nick Heidfeld last year on the technical side so I managed to see how different drivers work. It's true that you learn a lot, but there are a lot of new experiences coming along and that mitigates against experience a bit."

11:49 Reflective news from Caterham, via @MyCaterhamF1: "78 laps and Heikki's stepping out of the car for a short while. A very solid morning. Thinking back to 2010 and 2011, we've come a long way."

11:49 Raikkonen comes in, leaving just Maldonado and de la Rosa on track.

11:50 Whisper this quietly, but there might just be a chance for lunch today.

11:50 Mikael from Sweden says "We are a group of Formula 1 fans in Sweden travelling to Barcelona for the Spanish Grand Prix. What hopes do you have for that race?"

Bruno Senna: "Barcelona is one of my favourite tracks. Historically, I have been very competitive there. I won there in GP2 in 2007, I got a podium in 2008. In the Le Mans Series I've been on the podium there. In 2010 in F1 I raced there and it was okay. Historically, I have done well there so hopefully I can do a good job."

11:51 De la Rosa now the only car on track.

11:51 Bruno Senna has to leave us now, so time for just one last question...

11:52 Fabricia Celis asks "Do you have a message for your fans?"

Bruno Senna: "For me, it's very important that everybody has been giving me such great support. Last year was tough, the winter was tough and I had so much great support. So thanks very much for that. Hopefully we will have a nice year with good results for you guys to enjoy."

11:53 Thanks ever so much for your time Bruno, and thanks to everyone who emailed live@autosport.com with questions for Williams's new signing.

11:53 Senna gets his first go in the FW34 tomorrow when he takes over from Pastor Maldonado.

11:54 Meanwhile we have another special guest coming up on AUTOSPORT Live this afternoon when Lotus's Romain Grosjean joins us. Email live@autosport.com with any questions you have for him.

11:54 De la Rosa has pitted so the track is empty and it looks like we have an unofficial lunchbreak.

11:55 Not quite, Button is setting off again.

11:56 Schumacher remains fastest in the 2011 Mercedes, having done a 1m18.561s lap. Webber, Ricciardo, Bianchi and Raikkonen fill the top five.

11:56 Button is sixth, ahead of Massa, Maldonado, Perez, Kovalainen and de la Rosa.

11:56 With 78 laps in the bag, Kovalainen has done the most mileage today. Maldonado is making up for Williams's quiet Tuesday on 61 laps, while Webber has done 58 and Schumacher 53.

11:57 At the other end of the scale, 26 for Button and Raikkonen - thanks mainly to the Lotus needing attention after a visit to the gravel earlier - and 23 for de la Rosa's HRT.

11:58 Raikkonen goes out on track again as Button zips past.

11:58 And Massa sets off too on a set of used medium Pirellis.

11:58 We didn't want lunch anyway.

11:59 Button does a 1m23.105s to start his stint, while Raikkonen is onto a flying lap too.

12:00 Raikkonen's first flying lap is a 1m20.350s - just a tenth off his best of the day so far.

12:01 Raikkonen twitches and runs very wide on the exit of the Angel Nieto turn.

12:01 And that turns into a 1m21.215s lap that time around.

12:02 We get the impression Raikkonen is enjoying all this - he's been wringing the neck of the car since he got back in it.

12:02 Massa and Ferrari remain comparatively underwhelming with a 1m23.500s.

12:03 But Ferrari insists it's just working diligently through a programme, and @StrangAutosport points out that his parents always used to say "those who do their homework always get good grades"

12:03 Bit quicker from Massa - a 1m22.906s, while Raikkonen's next time is a 1m21.811s. Just those two on track now.

12:04 A short time ago, while we had Bruno Senna with us, Webber did two longer runs for Red Bull - each lasting 10 laps, and both averaging low 1m22s. That followed his qualifying-style 1m19s blasts of earlier this morning.

12:04 Raikkonen heads for the pits as Massa laps in 1m23.157s.

12:06 As the Lotus is rolled back in we can see lots of square blue patches over the suspension and rear bodywork - these are heat sensors which monitor... well, heat from that area - which can get extreme from exhausts and brakes.

12:06 Just Massa on track. Felipe: entertain and impress us please.

12:06 Or the random Spanish people will come back and take pictures of us again if the track's too boring.

12:07 Webber heads out down the pitlane, stabbing the Red Bull's throttle.

12:07 Followed by Schumacher, who relatively thunders down past the garages.

12:07 Massa's run continues with more mid-1m23s.

12:07 Massa must've heard our call to be impressed and entertained as he came past on half-throttle that time...

12:08 Button goes back out.

12:08 The McLaren's last run was just two laps - a 1m24.9s and a 1m23.1s.

12:08 So last year's top four teams are all out on track together now. Showdown...!

12:08 (Yes, we realise it's only testing.)

12:09 Webber is onto a quickie - he bangs down the box into Turn 1 and the RB8 handles like a slot car through Turns 3, 4 and 5. It already looks very settled on the track.

12:10 Webber said yesterday that he is enjoying the car and it feels better at this stage than he did last year.

12:10 His lap looked fast, but the timing screen disagreed - a 1m22.469s. Perhaps the start of another longer run.

12:10 Button is quick though, a 1m20.798s from the McLaren.

12:10 That's very close to Button's best so far today.

12:10 Massa has pitted.

12:11 While Schumacher does a 1m21.201s.

12:11 After the Mercedes' burst of 1m18s earlier, Schumacher went onto a longer 16-lap run, averaging 1m22.655s.

12:11 We've had a lot of questions to live@autosport.com about the Mercedes and the spec it's in this week as the team is still using the 2011 car.

12:12 @eddstrawF1 points out "It's basically in 2011 specification to act as a baseline for comparison of Pirelli's 2012 tyres to last year's. The team can't change too much or the comparative data will be skewed." Expect to see the new Mercedes at test two at Catalunya in a fortnight.

12:14 Webber also said that the RB8 felt a little like the embryonic RB7. He possibly prefers the way this car delivers the power without all the blown diffuser voodoo, suspects @StrangAutosport

Michael Schumacher12:15 Just joining us? Want a recap on everything that happened this morning? OK then...

Schumacher fastest on second morning

12:18 And if you want to see the latest pictures from Jerez, visit our gallery. Today's updates include pretty sunrises, Eric Boullier in shadow, and Pedro de la Rosa in white-with-beige-blobs overalls...

Jerez testing gallery

12:19 Speaking of de la Rosa, he's back out, as is Massa - undeterred by our earlier demands for entertainment.

12:20 One suspects that if we were to hunt for @eddstrawF1 right now, one might find him in Sauber's hospitality...

12:21 But even from there, he can answer the questions you send to live@autosport.com...

12:22 A question from Fonzi from Slovenia: "Why Ferrari is saying it has a very fast car? Massa drives only regular laps, without trying to do a qualifying one... How do they know their lap speed?"

@eddstrawF1 replies: "Weren't you in classic American sitcom of the 1970s and 1980s Happy Days? Back on subject, Ferrari is stressing that the headline laptime (right now, 2.499s off Michael Schumacher's fastest time) isn't important. It's a fair position, as this is only the second day of running of the car and there is a huge amount of work for everyone to do with their car set-ups, tyre use and development parts before the real pace is there to be seen.

"It's fair to say that the Ferrari hasn't looked brilliant on track so far, but it has a very tight programme to work through. Right now, the last thing teams are worried about is qualifying pace so no one will be going for flying times on a thimble of fuel even at the top of the timesheets."

12:22 On track right now, Raikkonen is lapping in mid-1m20s and Schumacher in high 1m21s.

12:25 Schumacher, Massa and de la Rosa are sharing the track at the moment

12:26 Despite his high 21s consistent run, Raikkonen was on a new set of soft Pirellis

12:26 We believe he was evaluating the degradation of the new yellow-wall rubber

12:27 Massa and de la Rosa have stopped, leaving Schumacher alone on track. The German is lapping in the 1m22s

12:27 Sixty-seven laps for the Mercedes driver so far. Only Kovalainen has more, at 78

12:28 @InsideFerrari: This last run of practice starts signed the end of the morning programme for Felipe.

12:29 So that's 51 laps for the Brazilian for a rather productive morning

12:31 Schumacher is still the only driver lapping the Spanish circuit as the rest of the teams enjoy a break

12:31 A 1m23.071s for the seven-time champion on his 70th lap of the day

12:33 And now Schumacher also stops after a 16-lap run with an average laptime of 1m21.865s

12:33 That means there are no drivers on track at the moment

12:34 This seems like a good moment for you to go eat something quickly. But don't take took long, because we'll have Romain Grosjean answering your questions soon

12:36 Since there is no official lunch break, this is the closest thing to it we have seen so far at Jerez this week

12:36 We can still hear engines running underneath us though

12:37 Busiest man in the morning was Kovalainen in the Caterham, managing 78 laps. He is followed by Schumacher with 71 and Webber with 65, the Australian the quickest man in 2012 machinery

12:39 The quickest time at Jerez last year was a 1m19.832s. Webber is already well faster than that

12:39 @StrangAutosport is enjoying a nice two for one Snickers bar, which he claims can't be found in England

12:40 As Paul di Resta joins the track, having taken over from Jules Bianchi at the wheel of the Force India

12:41 Di Resta was an impressive second quickest yesterday. You can read his thoughts on the new VJM05 here

Di Resta upbeat over VJM05's progress

12:42 Also for the first time today, @NobleF1 has left his laptop. That's a good stint for the Briton

12:43 Di Resta completes his first timed lap: a 1m23.597s

12:44 Perez also joins the action in the Sauber. Lunch break was short (at least for us)

12:46 De la Rosa also leaves the pits in the HRT

12:47 @StrangAutosport: Looking out over the relatively quiet Jerez track, I've had time to contemplate how terrified I was the last time I came here...

Expressway to hell

12:48 Slow laps for di Resta as he continues on track in the Force India

12:49 Raikkonen has joined the track in the Lotus as di Resta comes back to the pits

12:50 It's the Finn and de la Rosa on track at the moment

12:51 Toro Rosso reports after the morning session: Over 40 laps of Jerez circuit for Daniel before we stopped for a bite to eat. Work carries on from yesterday getting to know our brand new car, finding out how it reacts to changes made and logging as much data as possible. Aiming for a long run this afternoon.

12:52 Perez is also driving. We forgot about him. Our apologies

12:52 Raikkonen is lapping in the 1m22s region so he has probably more fuel on board

12:53 The weather in Spain today is bit chillier than yesterdy - and there is quite a strong wind blowing across the back straight

12:53 Raikkonen has just been shown the L2 board - so another two laps on his stint to come

12:54 The media centre is much amused by tours of the facility traipsing through. Tourists taking photos of it

12:55 A 1m23.024s for Raikkonen on his last lap

12:56 As de la Rosa returns to the pits after five laps in the 1m26s and 1m27s in last year's HRT F111

12:56 A slow lap from Perez - 1m29s - has put the Mexican right in front of Raikkonen on track

12:57 They have a 4km track to themselves and now are just a couple of metres apart from each other. Racing drivers, gotta love them

12:58 But Raikkonen's stint ends, and so he is back the pits

12:58 The mechanics wheel him back in. There's loads of blue temperature sensors all around the exhaust exits and on the rear suspension

12:59 That leaves Perez alone on track, the Sauber driver on the fourth lap of his current stint

12:59 And here's Romain Grosjean, who has come up to do the Live chat. Say hello to him

13:00 Red flag

13:01 Perez did a 1m41s lap and returned to the pits before the red flag was deployed. Timing screen says "circuit check" so it could be oil on track

13:02 Track workers looking at the green concrete behind the kerbs. Apparently it has cracked and they are pulling it away

13:03 And as we say that, everybody seems to be happy with it, and the green flag is out again

13:03 That hasn't helped much so far, as no one is leaving the pits at the moment

13:04 Engines are now being fired up

13:04 And di Resta comes back out for the second run of the afternoon

13:04 Raikkonen leaves the pits too

13:05 Looks like Raikkonen is going to do a five-lap run now

13:06 With less than three hours of the test left, the track temperature is 20 degrees. Air temp is 10.8

13:07 Di Resta posts his quickest time of the day with a 1m21.232s

13:08 That is about one second slower than Bianchi managed this morning - although we don't know what programmes they are on

13:09 Meanwhile, Raikkonen has done a 1:22m619s on the first lap of this run

13:10 Di Resta has slowed down on this lap, over 10 seconds slower than the previous one

13:11 A rather unspectacular 1m24.576s for Raikkonen on the second lap of the stint

13:12 As di Resta is back on the pace with a 1m21.461s. Eleven laps for the Scot so far

13:12 And he dives into the pits

13:12 Raikkonen has the circuit for himself. His pit board is out and telling him to come into the pits after his next time passing the pits

13:14 Analysis of di Resta's laptime show some good straight-line speed in the speed trap. He went purple there

13:14 287.2 km/h for the Force India

13:15 A 1m22.270s for Raikkonen on his 50th lap of the day. The Lotus driver is now back in the pits

13:15 The track went quiet for a moment before Perez drove his Sauber out of the garage

13:16 And speaking of the Sauber, there has been a lot of talk about the car design here - with rival technical directors intrigued by a little hole in the car under the nose

13:16 They could be trying something similar to Red Bull Racing - with that letterbox on the top of its nose

13:18 We would show you a photo, but it's really hard to see due to the colour Sauber has picked for its nose. Which is back, in case you haven't noticed

13:18 Perez looks like he is doing some aero tests - definitely not pushing for a quick lap time

13:18 His rear light is flashing, which probably is a warning to following cars that he is going slow

13:19 It could be that he is doing constant speed tests to try and get some aero data

13:19 Now the Mexican stops in the pits as Ricciardo goes out for the first time this afternoon. The Australian is currently third quickest in the Toro Rosso

13:20 We hear more engines firing up down in the garages

13:21 The Caterham of Heikki Kovalainen leaves the pits

13:22 Nico Rosberg is following the action from the pitwall. He will return to the cockpit tomorrow

13:23 @clubforce: Guess what @NicoHulkenberg is up to? He's green screen filming with our friends at RTL! twitpic.com/8h8ej9

13:23 Ricciardo's first lap is a 1m27.964s as Perez returns to the track following a few minutes in the pits

13:24 Kovalainen sets his fastest speed so far at 276.9 km/h

13:25 And Perez's red light continues to flash

13:25 It doesn't look like the Mexican is trying to set a fast time, but rather aiming to gather data

13:26 And again, Perez drives back into the pits

13:26 Very slow sector times for Perez - some five seconds slower than the other cars on track

13:28 Ricciardo pits, leaving Kovalainen as the only man on the track.

13:29 That was a slow three-lap run from the Toro Rosso, all in 1m26s or 1m27s.

13:29 Kovalainen is heading in now too, so the track is empty.

13:30 Only for a moment, though, because as Kovalainen is wheeled back into the garage, Perez trundles back out in the Sauber.

13:31 From the sound of the engine note around the circuit, Perez is doing more low-speed work.

13:31 He is accelerating then slowing down as he takes to the start/finish straight.

13:32 The crowd present are remembering that watching F1 testing sometimes does just mean watching a Sauber go slowly around a circuit by itself.

13:32 Perez disappears from our view in quite a leisurely fashion.

13:32 Looks like Raikkonen is about to go out for another run.

13:32 He leaves the garage, then stops at the pit exit for a practice start. Then after a few moments of waiting, he tears away.

13:33 Raikkonen has already been great value on his return to F1.

13:33 From what we've seen over the past two days, even his low-speed aero test runs will features kerb-hopping and kicking up the dust.

13:34 Perez pits, so the track is all Raikkonen's.

13:36 Important update from Caterham via @MyCaterhamF1: "how many teams have a Bob Marley, Global Underground, Allman Brothers and David Bowie soundtrack in the motorhome? NONE"

13:36 Looking forward to hearing what the rest of the F1 world is listening to...

13:37 Raikkonen does a 1m24.425s then a 1m24.345s, and looks like he is in for a longer run, with 'L11' slotted onto his pitboard.

13:37 Di Resta goes back out in the Force India.

13:38 Ambik Mojumber has emailed live@autosport.com to ask if Sebastian Vettel will be out at Jerez?

13:38 Here's the info from @StrangAutosport: "Yes Ambik, he is scheduled to drive the new Red Bull R8 championship defender tomorrow and Friday. So far Mark Webber has completed 116 laps in it and has set the fastest time for a 2012 machine at Jerez - 1m19.184s."

13:38 Perez also rejoins in the Sauber.

13:39 Di Resta sets another new best pace through the speed trap - 287.2 km/h

13:40 Ricciardo and Button set off - the unofficial lunchbreak is well and truly over. Back to work everyone.

13:40 Improvement in time from di Resta as he clocks a 1m20.831s and pops up to seventh overall.

13:41 That 0.4s gain took di Resta past Massa and Maldonado.

13:41 Di Resta looks a bit slower on this lap, and Ricciardo overtakes him into the right-hander leading onto the back straight.

13:44 @eddstrawF1 brings an update on events at HRT - de la Rosa says they've been doing set-up adjustments to test the 2012 tyres and his feeling has improved. He feels the team is doing a good job and working together better and better. Overall the car is working well, de la Rosa says, but is becoming more difficult to drive because of the wind.

13:44 Another improvement from di Resta, as better times in the first and third sectors bring him down to 1m20.716s. He stays seventh but is now closer still to Button.

13:45 Button and di Resta both pit, leaving Ricciardo and Raikkonen on track. Raikkonen has five more laps on this run.

13:46 We were wrong about @eddstrawF1... he didn't have lunch at Sauber, but thanks should probably go to @Lotus_F1Team.

13:46 Ricciardo is pitting too, so that flurry of multi-car track action was pretty brief.

Kimi Raikkonen13:47 Just Raikkonen left out once again, lapping in mid-1m25s.

13:48 Raikkonen down to 1m24.5s on his latest lap.

13:49 Last year, the fastest man of all in the Jerez test week was Rubens Barrichello. No, that didn't bode well for his 2011 season, did it...?

13:50 He's now trying to break into the IndyCar Series, and has just issued this update via his @rubarrichello Twitter feed: "No decisions just yet. Small dilemma at home plus trying to find sponsors to have a complete budget. Hoping for something good."

13:51 Back in F1, Raikkonen continues round in 1m24.6s.

13:51 One more lap for Raikkonen, says his pitboard.

13:51 And out comes current pacesetter Schumacher.

13:52 Good week for 'people who took a break between F1 stints' so far, with Schumacher on top right now and Raikkonen quickest yesterday.

13:52 On that basis, de la Rosa quickest for HRT tomorrow...?

13:53 And then on Friday, perhaps a shock ultra-rapid third comeback from one of Niki Lauda, Bruno Giacomelli, Alan Jones or Alex Wurz?

13:53 Back in the real world, Raikkonen gets the 'in' arrow.

13:53 Button sets out too.

13:53 Pitboard watch says Button will be on a 15-lap run.

13:54 He was happy to have done those distances yesterday, particularly when he recalled how tough McLaren's 2011 winter build-up had been.

Button: McLaren set for better start

13:55 McLaren already more confident about reliability than last year. Speedy pre-Melbourne technical rethink not on the cards in 2012.

13:55 Di Resta is also on track again for Force India.

13:57 That was a 13-lap run that Raikkonen just finished, almost every lap in there solidly in the mid-1m24s. 1m24.392s was his average, he only once rose to a 1m25s, and got down to a best of 1m23.9s on the sixth lap of the run.

13:58 Another improvement from di Resta as he does a 1m20.272s.

13:58 That takes the Force India ahead of Button into sixth, and brings di Resta to within less than a tenth of Bianchi and Raikkonen.

13:59 Kovalainen brings the Caterham back out. Last afternoon in the new car for the Finn for now, with Giedo van der Garde taking over tomorrow morning before Jarno Trulli gets his first go.

13:59 Caterham pitboard suggests eight laps for Kovalainen.

14:00 It lied, he's straight back in.

14:00 "To check a sensor setting," reveals @MyCaterhamF1 with frankly impressive speed.

14:01 Schumacher is back in after a couple of slow laps, so now we have Ricciardo, di Resta, Button and Massa on the circuit.

14:02 Di Resta comes back in.

14:03 He did four laps, with the first and third both slow, and a 1m20.2s and a 1m20.5s either side.

14:03 A practice start from Raikkonen as he heads out again.

14:04 Two hours to go now, and we still have Schumacher on top, followed by Webber in the quickest 2012 car, then Ricciardo, Bianchi, Raikkonen, di Resta, Button, Massa, Maldonado, Perez, Kovalainen and de la Rosa.

14:04 Kovalainen still on top of the mileage chart with 85 laps, chased by Schumacher on 76, Webber and Raikkonen on 65, and Maldonado on 61.

14:05 "Sorted" declares @MyCaterhamF1, and out goes Kovalainen, along with de la Rosa.

14:06 De la Rosa has the lowest mileage of the 'full day' drivers on 37 laps, just behind Button on 48. Di Resta has only done 23 but Bianchi had his car for the morning.

14:07 Schumacher and Webber head down to do practice starts in quick succession then join an increasingly busy track.

14:07 Mercedes, Red Bull, Toro Rosso, Lotus, McLaren, Caterham and HRT are all out.

14:07 There's a flurry of pitboards being waved, 'seven laps' the message for Kovalainen.

14:07 And 'L23' for Raikkonen.

14:08 That's a proper race simulation style long run for Raikkonen - 23 laps along the lines of a long-ish tyre stint in a grand prix.

14:08 Slight improvement from de la Rosa as he does a 1m23.315s in the HRT.

14:09 Along with Mercedes, HRT is still running a 2011 car for this test. The rest all have 2012 machines available. Marussia won't be present until its 2012 car is ready for the second test in a fortnight.

14:11 Loads of cars on track, but don't expect loads of improvements... Most are lapping a long way off their earlier pace and are presumably heavy with fuel or on evaluation runs.

14:11 Schumacher is quickest out there, doing 1m20s on soft tyres.

14:11 And de la Rosa is within 1.6s of his current personal best in the HRT.

14:12 Di Resta is revving hard and warming up the tyres on the way down the pitlane, before pausing for a practice start.

14:14 Webber comes in after what was just a three-lap run - starting very slow then a 1m23.7s and a 1m22.9s.

14:15 Raikkonen and di Resta pound round in 1m24s on longer runs.

14:16 Teams are doing some good evaluation of the soft tyres today. They can pick from soft, medium and hard at this test.

14:17 Kovalainen the exception - he's out on mediums at present.

14:17 Schumacher is coming up behind Raikkonen.

14:17 Any minute now, we're going to be joined by Raikkonen's Lotus team-mate Romain Grosjean, who will be answering the questions you've been sending to live@autosport.com.

14:18 Schumacher looks to the inside of Raikkonen at the exit of the last corner.

14:18 And then Schumacher overtakes into Turn 1. Wonder if the pair will be getting this close once the season starts?

14:19 This test is the first time they have shared a track since the end of 2006, when Schumacher retired for the first time and Raikkonen stepped into his Ferrari, By the time Schumacher returned in 2010, Raikkonen was off to rallying.

14:19 Raikkonen is presumably running heavier than Schumacher right now, with 15 more laps to go in the Lotus's stint.

14:19 Kovalainen becomes the latest to warm his tyres in the pitlane then go for a practice start.

14:20 Button leaves the pits too.

Mark Webber14:21 Quick times from Webber, who laps in the 1m19s - four tenths off his best of the day.

14:22 While Raikkonen, Ricciardo, di Resta and Button are in the 1m25s region.

14:23 Button now down into 1m23s.

14:23 He is on a 13-lap run.

14:24 Caterham update from @MyCaterhamF1: "Latest feedback is that the balance is pretty good but the gusty wind is having a pretty strong effect in some corners".

14:25 Massa goes out of the pits - first time we've seen the Ferrari for a while.

14:25 This time we won't pick on him and demand he entertains us like last time, as there are quite a few more cars on the track.

14:25 And anyway, we're about to put your questions to Romain Grosjean.

14:26 Schumacher is obviously having some fun out there today, he's now closed up on Button.

14:27 This is what happens when you get six world champions on the grid - there's always one in front of you when you're running lighter in testing...

14:27 Raikkonen comes in and Lotus does a quick practice pitstop.

14:28 De la Rosa improves again.

14:28 Quite a big jump this time - he finds 0.7s to get the HRT down to 1m22.674s.

Pedro de la Rosa14:29 He's still slowest, just over a second behind Kovalainen.

14:30 Things are relatively hectic this afternoon. Schumacher has just come back in, leaving Ricciardo, di Resta, Button and de la Rosa on track.

14:31 Schumacher's run was 16 laps long, starting out with a 1m19s and a load of 1m20s, before slowing to high 1m21s and mid 1m22s.

14:31 He averaged 1m22.2s, but that will be skewed a bit by a stray 1m29s early on.

14:32 It's always interesting at a test to see which teams are watching which other teams.

14:32 There is a Ferrari guy stood on the pit wall just next to Lotus, obviously keeping a watching brief on Raikkonen's progress.

14:33 Wonder if he looks like he's more enthusiastic in a black suit than he was in a scarlet one?

14:33 More cars come back in, so now just Button, Kovalainen and de la Rosa out.

14:34 The Ferrari guy might be following AUTOSPORT Live, for as soon as we typed that, he walked off...

14:34 De la Rosa pits. His 1m22.6s was followed by laps in 1m24s and 1m25s.

14:35 AUTOSPORT Live 'spy watch' continues... Red Bull has personnel stationed at the final corner to watch... well, everyone.

14:36 Red Bull spies presumably saying "well, that's less stable than ours" as most cars pass.

14:38 In news from elsewhere, remember Adrian Sutil...?

Sutil to appeal court verdict

Romain Grosjean14:39 We've got company again, Romain Grosjean is here to answer the questions you've been sending in to live@autosport.com.

14:39 And that's also answered all your "but what does AUTOSPORT's Sam Tremayne look like?" questions too.

14:40 Bit of a wide moment for Kovalainen there at Turn 4, he ran a bit wide onto the dust on the outside, collected it all up and carried on.

14:40 From a car that used to be known as a Lotus, to a man about to drive a car now known as a Lotus...

14:41 Serge Kalinin from Russia asks "Romain, what are your sensations from the first days of pre-season testing at Jerez?"

Romain Grosjean: "It has all been very good. Everybody was very excited about seeing the car on track. Even though the lap times don’t mean anything in testing we all know it's better to be on top than four seconds behind, so it was a good first day and hopefully we can keep it going all season long.

"I'm very excited about getting in the car tomorrow, it will be a special moment for sure. It will be my first proper launch in Formula 1 because when I came in 2009 it was half-way through, so this will be my first proper test. I will leave the pitlane with the car I will drive all season long, so it will be very special."

14:41 We only have Massa and Kovalainen on track now, as Button has come in.

14:41 Massa delivers his quickest time of the day, a 1m20.793s.

Felipe Massa, Ferrari14:42 It's three tenths faster than his previous best, but doesn't improve his position. The Ferrari stays eighth.

14:43 Raikkonen heads back out after another practice start.

14:45 Timothy Houthoofd asks: "This year there are three French drivers at the start of the F1 season. How is the understanding between them and how is your relationship with France's new rising star Jean-Eric Vergne?"

Romain Grosjean:
"The relationship is quite good between the French drivers. It's good we have three, it's good for France and I am very happy to be one of them. I hope to be the one who one day gets the 'Marseille' on the podium though!

"We all get on well though which is good. Hopefully we will now see some French flags in the crowd on the driver parade!"

14:46 Schumacher does a practice start and leaves the pits.

14:47 In his last run, he was doing a fair bit of overtaking - but now the Mercedes is the car set to be passed, as Massa gains on him.

14:47 That said, the sometime Ferrari team-mates look evenly-matched on pace.

14:48 It's a reminder that Massa is entering his seventh straight season as a Ferrari driver - longer than many have managed at the Scuderia.

14:49 Dinko Tanev asks "What is your personal goal for 2012?"

Romain Grosjean: "It's difficult to set any personal goals at the start of the season because first you need to see where the car is. I won't put any results out there, but I will say I want to give my best in the car, not make any mistakes and get the best out of myself. If I can achieve that it will be a good season."

14:49 So three questions into your quizzing of Grosjean, and no one has mentioned Raikkonen yet...

14:49 But here it comes...

14:50 Brad Larsen asks: "How do you see yourself gaining from having Kimi, a former world champion, on board as your team-mate? Have you been able to make him laugh or smile yet?"

Romain Grosjean: "Haha. We did, we did – with Kimi he is a very nice guy, and it's good to have him alongside me. It's also good for the team to have him, and hopefully we can develop the car together and have a good season.

"I think we have to work together: two drivers are always stronger than one driver, so if we work together it will be better for the team. Hopefully we can also improve ourselves at the same time."

14:53 Schumacher is the quickest of those on-track at the moment, lapping in low 1m21s.

14:53 Lots of people asking live@autosport.com about the specification of the Mercedes as it's a 2011 car.

14:53 Hendrik De Paepe asks whether Michael Schumacher and Mercedes are using the 2011 hot-blown diffuser?

14:54 @Strangautosport says: Yes Hendrik, Mercedes is using a full specification 2011 W02. The idea behind its programme for this test is to do a back-to-back comparison of Pirelli's 2012 tyres against the data it has for last year's rubber. Mercedes doesn't want any added extraneous data from new parts. The new car will be run at the next test at Barcelona on February 21."

14:54 Kovalainen pits, leaving Schumacher, Raikkonen and Massa on the track.

14:56 More coming up from our special guest Romain Grosjean...

14:56 Di Resta goes out, now without the periscope measuring device on the Force India.

14:57 'L6' on Raikkonen's pitboard.

14:57 Raikkonen ought to be pretty pleased with his running this week - good times and good reliability from Lotus.

14:58 Lundqvist Jesper asks: "Do you think you will out-qualify Kimi this season?"

Romain Grosjean: "Hah. We will see! The aim is to be in pole position though, so we will have to outqualify 22 other drivers as well! If any sportsman tells you he is starting a competition to finish fifth or sixth he is lying! Everyone wants to win, and the aim is to beat all the others."

14:59 Brian O'Flaherty asks: "Would you have preferred not to have such a strong team-mate for your second chance at F1?"

Romain Grosjean: "Haha. Honestly I think it is very good for the team to have such a strong line-up. I'm very happy for the team and very proud to be part of it. It's good news to have Kimi on board and hopefully we can achieve a very good season.

"I don't just think about my team-mate though: you have to beat more or less everybody if you want to win."

15:00 As we head into today's final hour, we have Schumacher, Raikkonen and di Resta on track. Schumacher doing 1m21s, the others in 1m25s.

15:00 Schumacher remains fastest over top 2012 car runner Webber, then Ricciardo, Bianchi, Raikkonen, di Resta, Button, Massa, Maldonado, Perez, Kovalainen and de la Rosa.

Heikki Kovalainen15:01 Kovalainen is still the man with most laps under his belt at 112, but Schumacher is catching up with 112. Raikkonen nearing three figures too on 93.

15:02 Di Resta has the lowest mileage tally at 40 laps having only done the afternoon. Perez (45) and de la Rosa (49) have done least laps of the drivers who have had a car to themselves all day.

15:03 Raikkonen stops in the Lotus pit box, turns the engine off and is wheeled back into the garage.

15:03 While his team-mate Romain Grosjean returns to answering your questions.

15:05 Claudio Alegria asks "Romain, after being dropped by Renault and forced to stick to a plan B of racing in GP2 with a team that hadn't won anything for years, did you ever realistically think you would get a second F1 chance, with the very same team?"

Romain Grosjean: "Well, first before GP2 there was GT1 and that was tough – at one point I thought it would be very, very difficult to get back into Formula 1. The passion was always inside me though.

"When I got the chance I was lucky in a way that a few people believed in me – Gravity, Genii, DAMS – and they believed in me when it was most difficult.

"I wouldn't say GP2 was a Plan B though – it was the Plan A to get back into Formula 1 and the mission was to be a team leader, bring back DAMS to the top and to try and win the championship. It went well!"

15:05 Di Resta comes out on track right in front of Schumacher - giving the ex-champion another chance to practice his overtaking.

15:05 And there we go, Schumacher has slotted past by the time they return to our view at Turn 2.

15:07 Jesse Telkkala asks: "Romain how have you fitted into your new team as a full-time driver, as you were only a test driver last season?"

Romain Grosjean: "Well, being a test driver last year was very good because I could meet all the team guys and spend time with them. I could also have a beer with them on Saturday evening because I wasn't racing on Sunday! You create links like that which are quite strong.

"Then I spent a few days in Enstone in January so I saw the car develop from a monocoque to the rolling chassis which was nice to see. The team welcomes me so I'm very happy to be here. We have 20 grands prix to do this year so you have to get on well, and we do."

15:07 De la Rosa goes slightly quicker again with a 1m22.628s, but remains at the bottom of the timesheets in the HRT.

15:08 Maldonado is out again and lapping in low 1m22s in the Williams.

15:08 And we've just seen ex-Williams man Sam Michael in his new McLaren team kit for the first time this year.

15:08 Maldonado is speeding up, with a 1m22.0s that time around.

15:10 Ivan Nikolic asks "If not F1 what else would you have liked to do in your life (what other professional motosport championship and what if it is not motosport at all)? By the way, wish you all the best for upcoming season!"

Romain Grosjean:
"Thanks! If I was not a driver I would have loved to be an aerodynamic engineer – if I had managed to keep my studies going that's what I would have loved to be.

"If I was not racing in Formula 1 this year I think it was quite clear that DTM was a very good option I was looking at. Testing with BMW went well and I would have been very happy doing that. That would have been my most likely choice."

15:11 Button goes back out and kicks off with a 1m25.002s, as Kovalainen rejoins as well.

15:11 Romain Grosjean has to head back to the Lotus garage soon, but we have time for two more questions to him...

15:12 Emma Mettler says: "It's great that you are back in F1! Is it like being a rookie again given the break between when you last raced and now?"

Romain Grosjean: "Good question - I think the situations are quite difficult to compare! I'm not a rookie because I did seven grands prix, but I'm not experienced as well because I have only seven grands prix – and they were two years ago. I think you can always learn as a Formula 1 driver. It's a bit of both. Ultimately I'm happy to be here and I want to give my best, just like before."

15:12 A 1m22.3s to start Kovalainen's run. That's within 0.8s of his best of the session on the day when Caterham got to press the KERS button for the first time.

15:13 Edwin Schimmel asks "What makes you a better driver nowadays? And is there a big difference inside the team (except the name change from Renault to Lotus of course)?"

Romain Grosjean:
"What makes the difference? I have been through a tough time and that helped me gain maturity and understanding. I think that allowed me firstly to get back into GP2 and then win the title.

"Then I got the seat at Lotus, and things have changed. The atmosphere is quite different to what I knew in 2009 – it's much better, much more relaxed and everyone is working in the same way. That's good as a driver when you feel the team is behind you. There have been quite a few changes, but I'm happy to have the experience from before."

15:13 That's a pretty appropriate point to wrap things up with Romain.

15:13 Big thanks to him for joining us, and thank you for all your questions.

15:14 We'll have plenty more special guests on AUTOSPORT Live over the rest of the test.

15:14 And in the meantime, you can email questions for our expert reporters to live@autosport.com. We're getting way more than we're going to manage to answer amid the madness of the first test, but we'll get through as many as we can.

15:15 Just five cars out on the track at the moment, but the way the resonance works around here, it sounds like more.

15:17 An improvement from Massa, who does a 1m20.549s but stays seventh.

15:17 Di Resta has now come in, while Webber sets out.

15:19 Di Resta's stint was 12 laps, averaging1m24.8s.

15:19 And a 1m20.7s from Massa, who is pressing on.

15:19 He slowed to a 1m36s between those two 1m20s laps.

15:20 Webber meanwhile is in the 1m22s.

15:20 Make that 1m21.224s for Webber now.

15:21 Now Massa does a 1m20.9s and is visibly pushing harder than for most of the day.

15:21 He puts four wheels over the kerb at Turn 4.

15:21 This is the kind of entertainment we were crying out for as we pondered our lunchtime Snickers over a near-empty track a few hours ago.

15:22 Massa will be handing the Ferrari to Alonso tomorrow as part of a substantial mid-week reshuffle that also sees Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton making their first appearances of 2012.

15:23 Massa's flamboyant kerb adventure cost him a little, that lap was a 1m21.566s.

Jules Bianchi15:24 Earlier today, all your 'but what would Jules Bianchi look like driving a Force India?' questions were answered. And here's what the Ferrari protege thought about it all...

Bianchi settles in well at Force India

15:25 All of a sudden it's just Massa and Kovalainen out there.

15:26 Massa does a 1m21.8s as Ricciardo comes down the pitlane and does his 467th practice start of the week.

15:26 We've been keeping a tally chart...

15:26 Between that and all our pages of rough working out to calculate average lap times in stints for you, we're in danger of running out of pencils...

15:27 Perhaps we need one of those ones NASA makes.

15:28 Just in case we lose atmosphere in the press room.

15:29 Speaking of which, Lotus gave out some rather snazzy pens at their launch on Monday.

15:29 Back to reality, we have Massa lapping in 1m22s as Raikkonen leaves the pits.

15:29 Only 30 minutes left of his comeback test, with Grosjean taking the car tomorrow. Let's see if Raikkonen has anything dazzling up his sleeve...

15:30 Lotus, you have given him soft tyres and no fuel and said 'go get Schumacher' haven't you...? We're looking for a grandstand finish please.

15:31 Massa comes in as Perez and Maldonado leave the pits. If they start dicing, we'll pretend they're reprising old rivalries from their 2010 GP2 title fight.

15:31 Raikkonen starts a quick lap and looks visibly faster than the Toro Rosso he followed through Turns 3, 4 and 5.

15:31 Here come Schumacher and Webber to join the party.

15:32 Final half-hour fight for fastest time...? Please...?

15:32 And what does Raikkonen have...?

15:32 A rather disappointing 1m22.210s. Two seconds off his best. No late in the day glory run here.

15:32 Have to say Ricciardo's time from earlier is starting to look rather good.

15:34 The Sauber looks a handful through Turns 4 and 5.

15:34 Raikkonen now lapping in 1m23s. And he's the fastest of the seven cars on track right now.

15:35 So having created false hopes of super-rapid end-of-day times, let's reach into the live@autosport mailbox...

Mark Webber15:35 Liam Caplice from Australia asks: "Just a quick question on the RB8's nose 'lip'. Adrian Newey has said that it was more for styling purposes than anything else. Surely Newey, who has been known to only use parts that would make the car quicker (e.g. start-only KERS system), wouldn't put something onto his car ONLY for styling? Is there something more going on?"

@eddstrawF1 suspects so... "There's no way that Newey does anything on his racecars for aesthetic reasons. He's all about performance and would probably saw off his drivers' legs if they could find a way to do it and allow them still to operate the pedals!

"He's a no compromise designer so it's hard to believe that styling is a reason for that duct being where it is. He's said it is for driver cooling, but it's pretty large for that and the fact that Newey has said it's 'primarily' for driver cooling suggest there is an aero benefit. Remember, too, that McLaren said its F-duct intake was for cooling early on!

"That's not to say that it's doing something especially clever. Presumably, that airflow is being appropriated somewhere, whether it is simply channelling some of air that would otherwise get involved in the turbulence created by the platypus nose and feeding it into the sidepod areas, or possibly some other clever pressure switch trickery as some have suggested, it's hard to say. But what we can say is it's there for very sound performance reasons."

15:37 Here's some excitement...

15:37 De la Rosa does his best lap of the week - a 1m22.128s.

15:37 He's still last, but within 0.6s of Kovalainen.

15:38 If all goes well, this will be de la Rosa's final 20 minutes in the 2011 HRT ever, as the team has pledged to have its new car at the second test.

15:38 Which will be a marked improvement on past form as in the first two years of its existence, HRT didn't manage to get its car ready to run at any pre-season tests.

15:39 Massa just left the pits with his Ferrari's rear wing covered in bright green/yellow flow-vis paint, the first time we've seen a team use it at this test.

15:42 @eddstrawF1 though points out that some teams use flow-vis that's only visible under ultra-violet light

15:42 So it could have been used already. By Red Bull, let's say...

15:42 As we do not have ultra-violet eyes, we do not know.

15:43 In the meantime, Schumacher is teasing the 1m20s again, and remains the fastest man on the circuit.

15:44 Webber has just come in after a six-lap run in 1m23s and 1m24s, averaging 1m24.0s.

15:44 Massa just did a quick out/in.

15:44 Schumacher in overtaking mode again - diving down the inside of di Resta into the final corner.

15:45 That was actually quite racey - he even snatched a bit of oversteer on the exit.

15:45 One might even say he's having some fun out there.

15:45 This 'fun, fun, fun' approach to testing that Raikkonen has brought is clearly catching.

15:46 Schumacher is now seven laps into this run. It contained a couple of anomalous 1m27s and 1m28s lap, briefly got into mid 1m19s, and has mostly been 1m20s.

15:47 Raikkonen is nine laps into his run and is mostly in high 1m22s and low 1m23s. The Finn has been very consistent all day.

15:47 Less variation in his lap times through a stint than most are recording.

15:47 Massa has either had the flow-vis paint wiped off the rear wing or changed wings for his next run.

15:47 Or Ferrari read about ultra-violet flow-vis on AUTOSPORT Live and hurriedly switched to it to spook us.

15:48 Button does a practice start as he heads back out.

15:48 Schumacher just pitted but headed straight back out again.

15:49 "Is it fair to say that the teams which are delaying to test a new car in Barcelona on Feb 21 are taking a 'calculated risk'?" asks Salil Natu from India.

@eddstrawF1's answer: "It's certainly not something you'd do without good reason. With only 12 days of pre-season testing, three down on last year, teams will have set out aiming to hit this test.

"Exactly why Mercedes has delayed is not absolutely clear. There's no question that it won't have decided at the start of work on the car that delaying it is the right path, but it could be any number of reasons.

"Sometimes things do just take a bit longer than hoped, sometimes there's a problem to be solved and sometimes there's a concept that comes along relatively late in the process and requires that little bit of extra work to optimise.

"Mercedes has pulled out all of the stops and somewhere relatively late in the process (but still a couple of months ago) the decision was made to push back the debut of the new car and it will not have been taken lightly."

15:49 Busy track going into the final 10 minutes, with everyone bar Webber and de la Rosa on the circuit, but most lapping relatively sedately in 1m24s and 1m25s.

15:50 Massa does his best time of the week so far.

15:50 It's a 1m20.454s, but he doesn't improve on his current seventh place.

15:50 And as @InsideFerrari immediately says "the stopwatch means nothing today."

15:51 Took Massa 86 laps today to get to that time.

15:53 Rael from Boston has a question about windtunnel/test correlation. "Why, with those high-tech windtunnels that most teams have, is it so hard to judge the performance of a car without testing it on the track? At least the aerodynamic performance should not differ too much between a very well simulated windtunnel run and a real one. What are the factors that make the on-track time so valuable (especially with respect to aerodynamics)?"

@eddstrawF1 feels this needs an in-depth answer... "The first point is correlation and I'm going to use a quote from an interview with Lotus technical director James Allison from last year to explain that and why it is quite right you used that word, rather than calibration.

"'Everyone's windtunnel is beautifully calibrated,' said Allison. 'They are exquisitely calibrated with very expensive instruments. I think that the word that people maybe should use is correlated. What aero guys are continually searching for is correlation between the tests they do in the windtunnel, on track and in CFD. I'm sure if you went to the teams up at the front end of the grid, one of the reasons is that they are at the front end is that the vast majority of the experiments they do in their testing domain translate into the physical domain. What aero teams strive for in addition to coming up with good aerodynamic ideas is a testing environment where they know the fruits of their labour in the tunnel will translate to laptime on the track.'

"So, that's the idea. The trouble is that this correlation takes a little work to get right. At the level that F1 teams are operating, very tiny discrepancies in correlation can make a big difference and it's only possible to know if a car is going to work properly when you run it in the real world. Teams have a multitude of factors to take into account. In the windtunnel, there's a danger you can come up with a car that works perfectly on the flat but has big airflow separation problems once bumps and yaw are taken into account. Teams try to factor this in, but you can only really be sure how the world works in the real world. With CFD, for example, the further downstream you go in the car, the more calculations the simulation relies upon and the greater margin for error. In the windtunnel, you can only simulate the car in so many transient states so you need to get it onto a real track to see how it works. Ideally, the correlation is good and your car is a goer. If not, as Ferrari found this year, very small differences can put you on the back foot."

15:54 Got a question that you think will get @eddstrawF1's mental juices flowing? Email live@autosport.com...

15:55 Unless anyone hurries into the pits for fresh tyres and a glory run now, this doesn't look like a grandstand finish is brewing.

15:56 Webber seems to have finished his first week in the RB8, having pitted 12 minutes ago and not rejoined for the final flurry. Tomorrow we get to see what reigning champion Vettel thinks of the car.

15:57 AUTOSPORT Plus subscribers can find out more about the Red Bull RB8 here...

Tech notes: Red Bull RB8 analysis

15:57 Raikkonen goes off the road for the second time today, taking to the gravel at the Peloqui corner.

15:57 He rejoins the track, cuts the chicane and comes into the pits beneath us.

15:58 Shall we throw in an obvious reference to how it's an appropriate way for his first test back in F1 after two years on the gravel surfaces of rallying to conclude...?

15:58 Think we just did... (Sorry)

15:58 Actually, looks like Raikkonen chose to stay out after that moment.

15:59 It was a car that used to be a Lotus that came in...

16:00 Unfortunately the window to our right has the sun on it, so all the cars look black...

16:00 But we know they're not all a Lotus-that-used-to-be-a-Renault.

16:01 @eddstrawF1 vows it was definitely Raikkonen.

16:01 That settles it.

16:01 Chequered flag out, day two is done.

16:02 A full report of today's action will be on the AUTOSPORT news pages in a few moments.

16:02 Schumacher ends the day fastest with his blistering 1m18.561s in the 2011 Mercedes. Best of the 2012 cars was Webber's Red Bull, followed by Ricciardo's Toro Rosso.

16:03 Bianchi had his first morning in a Force India and took fourth ahead of yesterday's pacesetter Raikkonen in the Lotus, di Resta (who had the Force India for the afternoon), Massa's Ferrari, Button's McLaren, Perez's Sauber, Maldonado's Williams, then Kovalainen in the Caterham and de la Rosa in the 2011 HRT.

16:04 Kovalainen was busiest today, completing 139 laps, ahead of Schumacher on 132 and Raikkonen on 117. The relatively low tallies were de la Rosa (64) and Perez (67).

16:04 Keep checking AUTOSPORT.com into the evening as we bring you all the news from today's test session, plus plenty of analysis.

16:05 Starting with this investigation into how ex-Bridgestone man Hirohide Hamashima could be a key asset for Ferrari...

Helping Ferrari get a grip on tyres

16:06 We'll be back at 9am local time tomorrow for day three, featuring Vettel, Hamilton and Alonso trying out their new cars for the first time, and Giedo van der Garde's first appearance in the Caterham.

16:07 Thanks for joining us today, see you tomorrow.

  FASTEST TIMES
P Driver Team Time
1  SchumacherMercedes 1m18.561s
2  WebberRed Bull 1m19.184s  +0.623
3  RicciardoToro Rosso 1m19.587s  +1.026
4  BianchiForce India 1m20.221s  +1.660
5  RaikkonenLotus 1m20.239s  +1.678
6  Di RestaForce India 1m20.272s  +1.711
7  MassaFerrari 1m20.454s  +1.893
8  ButtonMcLaren 1m20.688s  +2.127
9  PerezSauber 1m20.711s  +2.150
10  MaldonadoWilliams 1m21.197s  +2.636
11  KovalainenCaterham 1m21.518s  +2.957
12  De la RosaHRT 1m22.128s  +3.567
All timing unofficial. Updated: 16:04 GMT
  OVERVIEW DAY TWO  
  CURRENT WEATHER
Mainly sunny High Temp: 12°C / 54°F
Track: Dry
  INFOBOX
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