A loss of third gear confined Lotus’ Jarno Trulli to the garage for much of the second practice session at the Turkish Grand Prix, costing the Italian veteran crucial track time and – worse for pride, more than anything – allowing the Virgin Racing car of Lucas di Grassi to split the T127s on the timesheets.
The Italian eventually finished the day with a quickest time some 1.4 seconds off the fastest pace of his team-mate, Heikki Kovalainen, having completed just 11 laps of the circuit relative to the Finn’s session-high 37.
"A bit more bad luck for me today as this afternoon’s session was cut short by losing third gear," Trulli told reporters after the second session.
"We’d planned to do some setup work in the second session and didn’t get the chance to do so but, against that, you can look at the times and see that we have continued to move forward overall with the car.
"We are moving away from the other new teams and closer to those in front – obviously we still have a lot of work to do, but it’s pleasing to see we are going in the right direction."
"It was a very good Friday again for me," Kovalainen (pictured) – whose fastest time was just 0.6s slower than the next-best-placed Jaime Alguersuari – added. "I had a really good first session this morning, with no problems with the car, and we were again able to improve the setup. This afternoon we were able to try both tyre compounds and successfully got through all our plans, so I couldn’t really ask for more."
[Original image via GP Update]