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LIVE COMMENTARY: F1: 2009 AUSTRALIAN GRAND PRIX - FRIDAY PRACTICE 2
   GO TO LIVE INDEX ALL TIMES GMT  
As it happened: Friday Practice 2
By Geoff Creighton and Emlyn Hughes
The live commentary has ended. No further updates will be posted.
05:15 Welcome back to AUTOSPORT Live as we continue to follow the opening day of practice at the Australian Grand Prix.

Next on the agenda is the second 90-minute practice session as the teams and drivers dial themselves into the Albert Park circuit.

05:17 The Williams duo of Nico Rosberg and Kazuki Nakajima clocked the fastest times in the first practice session earlier today, making a refreshing change from the traditional McLaren versus Ferrari fight.

Kimi Raikkonen wound up third for the Scuderia, with Rubens Barrichello fourth in the first of the Brawn GP entries, ahead of Heikki Kovalainen and Jenson Button.

Rosberg tops first Australia practice

05:20 AUTOSPORT forum members are invited to join the fun throughout the weekend, offering thoughts and opinions as the event unfolds.

With so many unknowns heading in to the season, there are lots of topics to debate as the story continues during the opening practice sessions:

• Can the Williams duo hold on to their slender advantage at the top of the order?
• The Force India drivers have enjoyed a solid start to the weekend with Adrian Sutil inside the top ten, will this continue?
• Red Bull Racing had a first session to forget. Do you think they will get laps on the board in this session?

Tell everyone what you think of the action so far.

Click the SHOW LIVE FORUM link in the red bar at the bottom of your browser window if you'd like to join the debate.

05:22 As forecast, the weather has improved steadily throughout the afternoon. Conditions are much brighter now with plenty of sunshine.

The maximum temperature this afternoon is 19 degrees, but as we move into the early evening towards the end of the session, the air and track temperature may drop a degree or two.

05:25 Second practice in Melbourne is just five minutes away.

05:26 The sunny weather gives us a track temperature of 33 Celsius.

05:29 There is a large crowd on hand to witness the action this afternoon, while down in pitlane the drivers are moving towards their cars in anticipation of the green light to open the session.

05:30 Second practice for the Australian Grand Prix is now underway.

05:31 Toyota drivers Jarno Trulli and Timo Glock are among the first to come out onto the track.

05:32 More than half the field head out onto the circuit. We expect an early rash of laptimes.

The Toyotas and Fernando Alonso begin timed laps.

05:33 Jarno Trulli is the first to set a time - 1:32.102, quickly superceded by his team-mate Timo Glock with 1:31.466.

05:35 There is heavy traffic on the track two-thirds of the field get straight down to the business of flying laps.

05:35 Mark Webber crosses the line in 1:30.662 to go fastest in the early stages, with Fisichella moving into second place.

Timo Glock demotes both of them moments later with a time of 1:29.670, as Fernando Alonso follows him into second position in the Renault.

05:36 Adrian Sutil puts the Force India VMJ02 at the top of the tree with a lap of 1:29.335, and Kazuki Nakajima posts a 1:29.509 to go second to the German.

05:37 Heikki Kovalainen is the next man to top the timesheet as times continue to improve. A 1:28.597 is now the time to beat.

05:38 Adrian Sutil has taken a short trip across the gravel trip while trying to improve his time, as we see Fernando Alonso loop his Renault round at the tricky Turn 4. He comes to a halt, but rejoins seemingly without any damage.

05:39 Lewis Hamilton and the pair of Ferraris have joined the circuit for their first runs of the afternoon.

05:40 Adrian Sutil regains the top spot from Kovalainen with 1:28.111.

Behind Kovalainen, Kazuki Nakajima is now third, with Sebastian Vettel fourth and Giancarlo Fisichella fifth in the second Force India.

05:41 Nico Rosberg slots into third position with 1:28.300, just ahead of his team-mate Nakajima, as Adrian Sutil returns to the pits following that first run.

05:41 Lewis Hamilton slots in eighth with his first time of 1:28.995.

05:42 Mark Webber is indeed putting laps on the board early in this session, and the home hero moves up the list to third place with a time of 1:28.276, behind Sutil and Kovalainen.

05:44 The action is fast and furious as now Timo Glock goes third, demoting Webber, with a lap of 1:28.259.

The top ten drivers are currently separated by just under one second.

05:44 Hamilton finds himself a gap between the pair of Ferraris and uses it to clock a time of 1:28.158 for third.

05:45 Jenson Button now makes his presence felt on the timing monitor, moving up from tenth to the top spot with 1:28.002 in the Brawn GP Mercedes.

05:46 Kimi Raikkonen slots in eighth quickest with his latest effort of 1:28.321.

05:46 Button is quicker still on his next flying lap. He sets the fastest first sector time so far in the session, as he powers his way to a 1:27.883 - a improvement of just over one tenth of a second.

05:47 Button is topping the session on the harder of the two available tyres, while Jarno Trulli is now testing the softer option.

05:49 Jarno Trulli leaps up the classification with the fastest time so far. The Toyota driver posts a 1:27.168 to beat Button's previous benchmark by over seven-tenths of a second.

05:49 Lewis Hamilton remains on the harder tyre but improves his time to a 1:27.958 as he puts in a run of laps.

05:50 Rubens Barrichello is also out on the circuit, but his first run has been less explosive than that of his team-mate Jenson Button, nonetheless he has quietly moved up from outside the top ten to sixth position with a 1:28.215.

He has now returned to the pits.

05:51 Jarno Trulli continues out there with his soft tyres, and extends his advantage with a lap of 1:27.050, then again with 1:26.925 on his latest lap.

05:53 Adrian Sutil is back out there in the Force India. He moves up to fourth place, then on the following lap to an excellent second position, with a 1:27.265 that is only three-tenths of a second behind current pacesetter, Jarno Trulli.

05:55 Giancarlo Fisichella cements Force India's pace in this second session of practice, by joining Sutil near the top of the classification. Fisichella goes third with 1:27.040.

05:56 Timo Glock now goes fastest of all with a 1:26.689, set using the soft tyres.

05:57 The softer tyre is being deployed across the board, with track conditions now far more suitable for their use.

Sebastian Vettel uses them to good effect and puts his Red Bull third with a 1:27.037.

05:57 Nico Rosberg is on a flying lap in the Williams. He improves from 11th to second fastest with his latest lap being a 1:26.624.

05:58 Heikki Kovalainen struggles to slow his McLaren for Turn 1 and is forced to take to the grass.

06:00 Timo Glock and Nico Rosberg are putting on a great show for the spectators at the Albert Park circuit. Both have improved in time, but it is Rosberg who gets the advantage, taking the top spot with 1:26.293 as the times continue to come down.

Glock is second, Trulli third, Vettel fourth and the Force India pair of Sutil and Fisichella are fifth and sixth.

06:01 Jarno Trulli now moves up a place to second with a slight improvement. He posts a 1:26.351 which maintains the Toyota two-three so far in this session, behind Rosberg.

06:02 Felipe Massa is on a long run of laps in his Ferrari and improves his time to a 1:27.366, currently eighth fastest.

06:02 Mark Webber splits the Force India duo and moves into sixth place. His laptime of 1:27.262 is just over one second away from the leading pace.

06:04 Rubens Barrichello improves to fourth place in the Brawn GP entry with the help of soft tyres ... then promptly misses his braking point for Turn 1 and takes to the grass.

Rubens continues without any visible damage to the car.

06:04 Nick Heidfeld is currently languishing in 20th - the slowest man on the timesheet. He is lapping the circuit, but is setting a slow pace of over 90 seconds per lap.

06:05 Jenson Button also makes a move up the field. The Briton goes eighth, posting a 1:27.096.

06:07 Lewis Hamilton heads out of the garage for another run in his McLaren.

06:08 Fernando Alonso has had another quiet session so far. He is way down in 18th place, but is on a quicker lap.

It does little to improve his position however, he is now 17th having broken the timing beam in 1:28.661.

06:09 The top runners in the session so far are coming back out onto the circuit for another run of laps.

Nico Rosberg is out there on soft tyres as he looks to go even quicker.

06:11 Rosberg improves yet again to extend the gap at the top of the timesheet. A 1:26.053 puts him almost three-tenths of a second ahead of Jarno Trulli in second.

06:14 Felipe Massa pits his Ferrari after a run of laps on the harder tyre.

06:14 Kazuki Nakajima has dropped down the order to 13th following his early run soon after the start of the session.

He is back out there in the Williams and moves up to sixth place, posting a time of 1:26.781.

06:16 Robert Kubica complains on the team radio that he is "sliding everywhere." The Pole is clearly unhappy with the handling of his BMW today.

06:19 A near miss between Nico Rosberg and Sebastien Buemi in the braking zone for Turn 1. Nico was attempting to pass on the inside approaching the right-hander, but pulled back in behind the Toro Rosso thinking that Buemi hadn't spotted his intentions.

As the Williams was moving back in behind, Buemi blended out of the throttle to let him through. Nico was momentarily caught unaware and just managed to avoid clipping the back of the Toro Rosso.

Both continued - Rosberg into the pits at the end of the lap, and Buemi has since finished another lap, moving up to 17th place in the process.

06:20 Nick Heidfeld returns to the circuit to set his best lap of the session. It's a 1:28.533, but only improves his position by one spot to 19th.

06:22 Mark Webber posts a 1:26.370 to move up the list to fourth in the Red Bull Renault.

Nico Rosberg still heads the list with 1:26.053. Jarno Trulli is in second spot, with Rubens Barrichello third, Mark Webber fourth, Timo Glock fifth and Kazuki Nakajima still in sixth place.

06:23 Robert Kubica improves to 12th quickest as he tests the softer tyre on his BMW.

06:24 The Renault team are currently languishing down the order in the final two positions. Nelson Piquet and Fernando Alonso are both on track now, and we will watch to see if they improve over the next few laps.

06:27 Nelson Piquet does move up the order, from 19th to 17th, with his latest tour - 1:28.216.

Timo Glock has run wide at Turn 3, the tight right-hander where Martin Brundle famously crashed in 1996. Glock ran wide onto the astroturf, and continued without an damage to the Toyota TF109.

06:27 Kimi Raikkonen continues to tumble down the order. The Finn has not been on the track for some time and has now dropped to last place as those around him have improved their times.

06:28 Fernando Alonso has improved from 20th place to 12th with a solid improvement in his laptime - 1:27.306. Team-mate Nelson Piquet is also moving up. He is now in 15th position.

06:28 Sebastian Vettel is off track at Turn 3.

06:30 The unfortunate German is climbing out of his Red Bull.

Replays show that as he approached the braking zone for the corner, he placed his car slightly too far to the left, and his left-hand wheels caught the grass verge and he instantly lost control of the car.

Vettel climbs out of the car, his day over.

06:31 The RB4 is craned away, through the Turn 3 gravel trap to safety. Turn 3 is currently covered by waved yellow flags, signaling other drivers to slow down.

06:31 Felipe Massa heads out of the Ferrari garage with the softer tyres on his car.

06:32 The incident has been cleared, allowing drivers to set quick times once again.

06:32 Kimi Raikkonen has also resumed his running. The Finn is using the harder tyre at the moment.

06:35 Felipe Massa clocks a 1:27.341 on his soft tyres - failing to improve on his best time after a moment of oversteer in the final corner

06:37 Lewis Hamilton is also testing the softer tyre. A lap of 1:27.813 leaves the world champion down in 16th.

06:41 With just under 20 minutes remaining in this second session, Nico Rosberg continues to lead the way with a time of 1:26.053, just under three-tenths of a second ahead of Jarno Trulli.

Rubens Barrichello is third for Brawn GP, with Mark Webber maintaining fourth place. Jenson Button is fifth in the second of the Brawn Mercedes, and Timo Glock is sixth in the second Toyota.

The time difference between Trulli in second, to Glock in sixth is just 0.093 seconds.

06:43 Adrian Sutil tells his Force India team he thinks there is a problem with the car as it is "undrivable." His engineer replies that it may just be a characteristic of the softer tyres he is currently testing.

06:44 A healthy total of laps have been set by all the drivers (except Sebastian Vettel) in this session.

Jarno Trulli has completed the most - 36 laps of the 5.303 km Albert Park circuit.

06:46 Lewis Hamilton tells his McLaren team that his car is bottoming out so badly that he can hardly see in to the (bumpy) braking zones. He pits.

06:50 Felipe Massa is having terrible trouble in the Ferrari as he tries to get some grip from his soft tyres, as they fade on what is a lengthy run of laps.

Firstly, Felipe ran slightly wide in Turn 14 and the rear end of his car twitched wildly. Then, a few corners later while starting the next lap, he ran wide again, off the road at Turn 1 and onto the grass.

No apparent damage to the Ferrari and Massa has continued on this run.

06:51 Kimi Raikkonen also has the softer tyre on his Ferrari and he improves to 14th, then runs off the road in the Turn 1 grass.

06:55 Rubens Barrichello is circulating with the soft tyres bolted onto his Brawn GP 001. The Brazilian takes a leisurely lap around the circuit as he brings them up to optimum temperature.

Nico Rosberg has just come back out, as we move into the final five minutes of practice.

06:56 The track temperature continues to fall as the day wears on in Melbourne. There has been little improvement to lap times in recent minutes - perhaps indicating that grip levels on the circuit are deteriorating.

06:57 Rosberg starts a lap, but we can see that he is faced with heavy traffic. The German is forced to back off in a bid to find some clear space on the circuit.

06:58 Nico Rosberg hits traffic again on his next lap, but on the other side of the track Rubens Barrichello is enjoying a clear lap and set to improve.

Yes, Barrichello posts a 1:26.157 to move up to second place.

06:59 Lewis Hamilton tries a late lap on the softer tyre. He gets it all wrong with another sideways moment in Turn 14 and fails to improve from 18th.

07:00 The session has ended. Cars that have already started a lap may complete it.

07:01 Nico Rosberg finally gets a clear lap on his final lap, but by now he has used the best of his tyres. He fails to improve, but is certain to end the first day of competition on top in Melbourne.

07:02 Adrian Sutil posts his fastest time of the day on his final lap - a 1:27.040 sees the German retain ninth position, less than one second away from the benchmark.

07:02 Felipe Massa pits his Ferrari and is called into the scrutineering bay for checks as the rest of the pack head back to the garages to wrap up the opening day of the season.

07:05 Nico Rosberg puts Williams back to the front with a great display in Melbourne. His fastest time was 1:26.053, ahead of Rubens Barrichello in second place.

Jarno Trulli was third for Toyota, with local hero Mark Webber keeping hold of fourth spot in the Red Bull Renault.

Jenson Button was fifth on a positive day for Brawn GP, ahead of Timo Glock in the second Toyota.

07:06 Sebastian Vettel's Red Bull is craned back on to the circuit for transport back to the pits. It has been a difficult day for the young German with that spin in the second session and a hydraulic problem earlier in the day.

07:07 The session report and classification is now available:

Rosberg stays on top in second practice

07:09 Stick with AUTOSPORT throughout the day as we bring you the latest news and post-session reaction from Melbourne.

07:11 The first day of Formula 1 action has thrown up some interesting results - results that so far continue the theme of winter testing.

Williams, Brawn GP and Toyota take up six of the top seven places. This is unlikely to please the perceived 'top teams' as the weekend continues.

Can Ferrari and McLaren fight back? Join us from 02:45 GMT on Saturday to find out, as we continue the story of the 2009 Australian Grand Prix.

  OVERVIEW PRACTICE TWO  
Session length: 90 minutes
  CURRENT WEATHER
Sunny High Temp: 19°C / 66°F
Track: Dry
  INFOBOX
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Monday 23 Mar Start GMT
 Australian Grand Prix Weather 15:00
Friday 27 Mar
 Friday Practice 1 01:15
 Friday Practice 2 05:15
Saturday 28 Mar
 Saturday Practice 02:45
 Qualifying 05:45
Sunday 29 Mar
 Race day at Albert Park 04:30
  ABOUT
Emlyn Hughes and Geoff Creighton are autosport.com's live commentary team. The dynamic duo have developed an inimitable style and a reputation for fast, accurate and insightful commentary. With unrivaled access to events unfolding at the circuit, they bring you the very latest, as it happens.

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