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Alonso off to a flier in Montreal

Double world champion Fernando Alonso sends out a clear message with the fastest time in both free practice sessions.

india Updated: Jun 09, 2007 17:47 IST
Simon Evans

Double world champion Fernando Alonso sent out a clear message on Friday with the fastest time in both free practice sessions for Sunday's Canadian Grand Prix.

McLaren's Formula One championship leader was 0.54 seconds ahead of Ferrari's Brazilian Felipe Massa in the second session at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, where he posted a time of one minute 16.550 seconds.

The Spaniard's team-mate Lewis Hamilton, level with him at the top of the standings, was third quickest but 0.757 seconds behind Alonso.

In the morning session, the McLaren drivers finished one-two with Alonso's best lap time of one minute 17.759 seconds, 0.208 seconds ahead of the British rookie.

McLaren will be hoping for a repeat of last month's Monaco race with Alonso winning and Hamilton finishing in second place to maintain his record of a podium finish in all five races of his debut season.

Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen and Massa, fourth and third in the standings respectively, were the next two quickest in the opening session.

Finland's Raikkonen finished the second session fourth quickest while BMW's Nick Heidfeld posted two good sessions -- fifth fastest in the afternoon after a seventh best in the morning.

Toyota's Ralf Schumacher, under pressure after poor results in the first five races of the season, was eighth fastest in the first session but only 19th in the second.