Barrichello aims for first points in Australia

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LONDON, Mar 24 (Reuters) Brazilian Rubens Barrichello hopes to end his points drought for Honda in next week's Australian Grand Prix after flying back to Italy for a test session.

''This track has helped me test the new ideas that we have, which I found useful, and I will certainly be using these in Australia and hope to have a good weekend there,'' said Barrichello in a team statement after yesterday's session at Vallelunga, near Rome.

Although thunderstorms and heavy rain limited his track time, Barrichello completed 46 laps.

The former Ferrari driver has looked uncomfortable in the Honda in the opening two races.

He finished 10th in Malaysia last weekend after being penalised 10 places on the grid for an engine change before qualifying and then hit by a 10 second stop-go penalty during the race for speeding in the pitlane.

The Brazilian was 15th, a lap behind Renault's winner Fernando Alonso, in the Bahrain season-opener.

British team mate Jenson Button has, meanwhile, finished third in Malaysia, after qualifying on the front row, and fourth in Bahrain.

''We will get there with Rubens but it is a bit of a hard slog at the moment,'' team boss Nick Fry told Britain's Daily Telegraph newspaper this week.

''Give him a couple of races and he will be more comfortable.

''We have a car that Jenson is used to. We have to make the car a bit more to Rubens' liking and he has to adapt his driving style to suit it. Hopefully we will meet in the middle.'' Barrichello finished second for Ferrari in Melbourne last year, when that race was the first of the season.

Reuters PDS DB1844

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