An extended five-day test, one of the last before the trek to Australia for the 2009 season opener, kicked off at Spain's Jerez circuit on Sunday.

An extended five-day test, one of the last before the trek to Australia for the 2009 season opener, kicked off at Spain's Jerez circuit on Sunday.

With an extra day added to the earlier schedule, the test could however be affected by rain throughout the week.

On Sunday, when Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel was quickest by some margin, a few showers and multiple red flags held up proceedings.

Every team except Toro Rosso and Honda were in action, including Force India, whose Giancarlo Fisichella was impressed with the new VJM02 despite managing only 31 laps.

"I am however quite surprised and happy about what I felt with the behaviour of the car today. It's very promising," the Roman veteran, trying for the first time the newly Mercedes powered car, also equipped with a McLaren gearbox, said.

McLaren's Pedro de la Rosa was down the order in the MP4-24, and like Robert Kubica in the BMW-Sauber he was evaluating Bridgestone's proposed tyre blanket-less slicks for 2010.

The new McLaren was also fitted with a fully 2009-specification wing for the first time in a while.

Felipe Massa, second quickest, beached his car into the gravel at one point, and Williams' Nico Rosberg also had an off.

 

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