Barcelona F1 test: Felipe Massa fastest on first day of final test
Felipe Massa set the pace for Williams on the first day of Formula 1’s final pre-season test at Barcelona as McLaren and Mercedes were hampered by mechanical issues.
Massa bolted on a set of soft tyres and completed a three-lap qualifying simulation run in the afternoon, clocking a 1m23.500s.
It’s the fastest time set in Barcelona testing so far, with the Brazilian eclipsing Lotus’s Romain Grosjean’s leading time from the last test by just over four tenths.
A late run on the supersoft tyres moved Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson up to second quickest with Lewis Hamilton, who set the pace in the morning session on the medium tyres, third.
However, Mercedes’ Hamilton did not complete a single lap after lunch following a failure with the MGU-K that the team could not fix in time to get the car back out on track.
McLaren’s afternoon was also curtailed with a hydraulics issue, meaning Jenson Button managed just seven laps, of which only one was timed.
Ericsson completed a race simulation in the afternoon, using the medium and hard tyres, and clocked 122 laps – the highest tally of the day.
Red Bull’s Daniil Kvyat, who brought the day’s first red flag when he stopped at the pit exit in the morning, only did 30 laps in the afternoon.
That brought the Russian’s tally to 75, as he finished fourth fastest, 2.4s off the pace.
Carlos Sainz Jr stopped at Turn 10 in the afternoon, bringing out the red flag for the second time.
The Toro Rosso driver completed 86 laps and ended up seventh, just ahead of Button who propped up the timing screens.
Elsewhere, Grosjean completed 75 laps and Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen 80 as they finished fifth and sixth respectively.
|4||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m25.947s||2.447s||75|
|7||Carlos Sainz Jr.||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m26.962s||3.462s||86|
Barcelona F1 test: Ferrari to try aero upgrades on Friday
Ferrari is set to introduce new aerodynamic components on Friday, as it gradually upgrades its aero package during Barcelona’s final pre-season test.
Kimi Raikkonen set the sixth-fastest time for the team on the opening day, having spent the bulk of his 80 laps on the hard and medium Pirellis.
While new components on the car for Thursday were minimal, Raikkonen is keen to run the updates on Saturday as he alternates days with Sebastian Vettel.
"More or less the car is the same," he said of developments compared to last week’s test. "We can get some, but not for today, hopefully for tomorrow.
"I think it’s not too bad, really, how the car behaves.
"There are certain things that we want to improve – and we want more grip obviously, always, to go faster – but sometimes it’s a bit tricky here with the conditions that we are having.
"If the tyres don’t work – one lap they work, next they don’t – it changes a lot."
Raikkonen is content with the visible progress Ferrari has made after enduring a troubled 2014 season, especially as he knows there is more to come.
"We’ve made a good step from last year. It’s hard to say from testing, but two weeks will tell us once we’re going in Australia," he said.
"Overall it’s a good a feeling and we still have one day to put all of the things we have learned together and hopefully we will be happy with everything.
"Obviously a laptime would be good, but we’ll see in a few weeks in the first race where we are.
"It’s not an issue, as long as you’ve got a good feeling on every fuel load you run it’s usually OK."
Da Autosprint n.7 del 17/02/2015
Ferrari boss says F1 should expect a new, happier Kimi Raikkonen
Ferrari team principal Maurizio Arrivabene believes Formula 1 will see a new, happier Kimi Raikkonen this year.
The 35-year-old endured the worst season of his F1 career in 2014 with a solitary fourth place in Belgium his best result.
The Finn, who was Ferrari’s last world champion back in 2007, was well-beaten by team-mate Fernando Alonso, finishing 106 points and six places adrift in the drivers’ standings.
He struggled with the handling of the Ferrari, which did not suit his style of being heavy on the front tyres and gentle on the rear.
But Raikkonen seemed happier during 2015’s opening test at Jerez and has said that he is feeling more comfortable with the car.
And Arrivabene says he has noticed a change in Raikkonen’s typically uncommunicative persona, joking that the Finn must be feeling "sick" because he’s smiling so much.
"He had his problems [last year]," said Arrivabene. "Problems because he was not feeling the car, especially the front.
"It was not a car that was adapted to the style of Kimi.
"He is demonstrating that these days, he is feeling the car better and he is smiling.
"This is very, very strange. It is the real scoop of the weekend."
Arrivabene added that Raikkonen’s behaviour in the garage has also been different to 2014 so far during testing.
"Kimi was also on the ground to move the car and try to adjust something," he said.
"I asked him: ‘What are you doing?’ He said ‘I was a mechanic’.
"This is the atmosphere in the team, all the guys around him were surprised to look at him and to hear him talking and talking and talking.
"I thought he was sick but he is not. It is just enthusiasm and I am sure this year Kimi can demonstrate his level.
"Kimi is very motivated and he is getting very, very well with [new team-mate] Seb [Vettel] and this is great."
Circuit: Montmelò circuit – 4.655 km
Driver: Kimi Raikkonen
Car: Ferrari SF15-T
Weather: Air temperature 4/14 °C, track temperature 9/20. Sunny
Laps/Km completed: 90/419
Fastest time: 1:24.584
Tyres used: Soft, Medium, Hard,
Programme: System checks, long runs, set-up work and tyre testing.
Kimi Raikkonen: “Today was not ideal, we had some small issues which prevented us from running as much as we wanted, but still we managed to do other stuff, try things and learn. We are going in the right direction in all areas and the team did a good job over the winter. Of course, racing is a different story from testing, but so far it has been good. The team bosses have managed to put the right people in the right places. It’s still early days, but everybody seems to enjoy it more. For the next test we’ll try to put the right things into the car”.
Barcelona F1 test: Daniel Ricciardo fastest on day two for Red Bull
Daniel Ricciardo’s morning time kept Red Bull on top at the end of the second day of Barcelona Formula 1 testing, as teams began race simulations in earnest.
Ricciardo lapped in 1m24.574s on soft tyres before the lunch break, and that stood for the rest of the day, giving him the top spot by 0.010s over Kimi Raikkonen’s Ferrari, which also did its best run in the morning.
"It was definitely better than yesterday," Ricciardo told reporters at the track as the day’s running ended.
"We’ve been trying to get a day with 100 laps and it was good we did that today.
"It’s just testing, but it’s encouraging seeing us on the top, or at least in that front group."
World champion Lewis Hamilton reclaimed the Mercedes from Nico Rosberg for the afternoon – having recovered sufficiently from the fever that sidelined him on Thursday – while Rosberg needed to rest his back as a precaution following a trapped nerve earlier in the week.
Hamilton and Ricciardo both embarked on race simulations, with the Briton’s top time of 1m24.923s – set on medium tyres – putting him fifth overall.
Both simulations were interrupted by a red flag for Carlos Sainz Jr putting the Toro Rosso in the gravel at the fast Turn 9 right-hander at the back of the circuit.
That was one of two afternoon red flags, with Marcus Ericsson causing the other when he stopped on the pits straight in the final half-hour.
Felipe Massa made progress up the timesheet to put Williams third, vaulting forward with two short runs on soft tyres after a competitive longer run on mediums.
That put him ahead of Sergio Perez – who got up to 121 laps in the 2014 Force India – and Hamilton, with just 0.349s covering the top five.
Rosberg’s morning time left him sixth.
Fernando Alonso was seventh for McLaren, getting up to a best-yet tally of 59 laps despite some concerns over the engine following Thursday’s seal problem.
Jolyon Palmer edged closer to the pace on his debut for Lotus and ended up eighth overall ahead of Ericsson and Sainz.
DAY TWO TIMES
|1||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m24.574s||-||143|
|4||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m24.702s||0.128s||121|
|10||Carlos Sainz Jr.||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m28.945s||4.371s||100|
Barcelona F1 test: Maldonado fastest, Wolff and Nasr collide
Pastor Maldonado used soft tyres to go fastest for Lotus-Mercedes on a Barcelona Formula 1 test day disrupted by a collision between Felipe Nasr and Susie Wolff.
The Williams and Sauber came together early in the afternoon session, when Wolff was on an out-lap and morning pacesetter Nasr was at full speed.
Contact between the Williams’s left front and Sauber’s right-rear sent Nasr into the Turn 5 barriers, with Wolff also coming to rest in the gravel.
Prior to the long red flag the collision prompted, Kimi Raikkonen had established Ferrari on top, initially on Pirelli’s ‘winter hard’ and then using mediums to do a 1m25.167s.
He stayed there until a flurry of soft-tyre runs in mid-afternoon, during which both Maldonado and Red Bull-Renault’s Daniel Ricciardo went out for short bursts on the faster rubber.
While Ricciardo could only get within 0.380 seconds of Raikkonen, Maldonado pipped the Ferrari by 0.156s to set an unbeatable benchmark in a Lotus he felt was showing encouraging progress.
"I can say it is a better car than last year," he said. "It’s a huge step, but it’s still very early days.
"It will not be easy because we do not have much time left and we have a new engine, but for now, it looks good."
Sergio Perez took over the 2014 Force India from on-loan Pascal Wehrlein after the German was recalled to Mercedes and the Mexican quickly moved up the order, fitting in 34 laps and going fourth on medium rubber.
Both Nasr and Wolff managed to get back on track in their repaired cars late on, although the Sauber triggered a red flag in the last few minutes when it stopped on the approach to Turn 9.
Nasr still held on to fifth in the standings with his morning time.
While Red Bull stuck to short runs, Toro Rosso hinted at reliability improvements for Renault as Max Verstappen topped the lap count on 94, eight more than second-best Wolff. Verstappen went sixth quickest during a very long afternoon run.
Jenson Button remained seventh on his morning time, despite the McLaren-Honda being sidelined while its engine was changed.
McLaren is set to be compromised by the same problems on Friday, as it waits for a faulty part to be updated in time for the weekend’s running.
Pascal Wehrlein occupied both eighth and ninth places in the results. His best time from relatively long runs on hard tyres for Mercedes was a tenth adrift of his morning pace for Force India.
The German had been summoned back to Mercedes duties because Lewis Hamilton had to stop after 11 laps in the morning due to a fever, and his team-mate Nico Rosberg was unable to step in due to pain from a trapped nerve in his neck.
DAY ONE TIMES
|3||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m25.547s||0.536s||59|
|4||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m26.636s||1.625s||34|
|6||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m27.900s||2.889s||94|
|8||Pascal Wehrlein||Force India/Mercedes||1m28.329s||3.318s||32|
Jerez F1 test: Kimi Raikkonen fastest for Ferrari on final day
Kimi Raikkonen ended the first Formula 1 test of 2015 on top for Ferrari, setting the fastest time of the week at Jerez on Wednesday afternoon.
The 2007 world champion spent most of the day at the top of the times, running on the medium and hard-compound tyres during the morning, before switching to some soft-tyre running late in the afternoon.
Raikkonen reiterated his belief that Ferrari has started 2015 in encouraging shape.
"Compared with the last car it feels at lot better," he said.
"We still have a lot of things to work on and things to improve, but we have something we can work on and the team has done a good job over the winter to prepare and make this car.
"We can be happy about that, but it’s still early days."
It was during a sequence of runs on the yellow-sidewalled Pirellis that Raikkonen set the best time of the four days, going one tenth of a second faster than Ferrari team-mate Sebastian Vettel managed on day two (on mediums).
Sauber once again got itself towards the front as it completed some soft-tyre running for the fourth consecutive day, with Marcus Ericsson edging out Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes for the second-fastest time with half an hour to go.
Ericsson caused a last-minute red flag when his car ran out of fuel on track.
Hamilton succeeded in passing the 100-lap mark for the first time at this test, after a water leak limited him to 91 on day two.
The reigning world champion did not have a perfect day though, as a spin at the chicane brought out the red flags in the morning.
It was only a minor delay to Mercedes’ programme, with Hamilton returning to the track just 40 minutes after he caused the stoppage.
At the other end of the timesheets, Lotus and McLaren both wrapped up the test early due to power unit and fuel pump problems respectively, while Red Bull lost time with an ERS problem earlier in the day that forced Daniil Kvyat to stop on track in the morning.
McLaren had a troubled morning as well, when an "operational issue relating to the oil level" caused a delay to its programme in the morning.
Button finished the day with 35 laps to his name, and he set the Honda-powered MP4-30’s fastest lap of the week with a 1m27.660s.
WEDNESDAY’S TEST TIMES:
|4||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m22.553s||1.712s||97|
|7||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull/Renault||1m23.975s||3.134s||64|
Testing at the Jerez circuit – 4 February 2015
Circuit: Jerez circuit – 4.428 km
Driver: Kimi Raikkonen
Car: Ferrari SF15-T – chassis 309
Weather: Air temperature 9/13 °C, track temperature 8/22. Clear skies.
Laps/Km completed: 105/464
Fastest time: 1:20.841 (Pirelli Soft tyres)
Tyres used: Wet, Intermediate, Medium, Hard and Soft
Programme: Tyre evaluation and set-up work.
Kimi Raikkonen: “Over the winter, we have made a good step forward and this car is definitely an improvement over the 2014 one. It’s the whole package that has progressed, but there is still a lot of work to do. We are not comparing ourselves to the others, we just got on with our own job, without looking at what they were doing. Times are of relatively little importance; what matters is that we have put together a good number of laps without having any real problems. Today’s conditions were not that easy, with too strong a wind blowing ontrack, but then it’s the same for everyone. As I said, we now have a good basis from which to start the development work.”
James Allison: “When you bring a new car to the track, you’re always excited and worried and that is mixed with a profound hope that all the hard work of so many people will be rewarded with performance. We leave this test without having all our expectations met, simply because we would have liked to have done even more mileage and because you always want to be faster. However, having said that, given how it went, overall we can bepleased, because we have had a solid start. Now, we are keen to push on with the development work in Barcelona, so as to be ready for the first race in Melbourne.”
Maurizio Arrivabene: “If one makes a comparison to last year, these past few days of testing have produced encouraging signs. The team has worked well, both at home and at the track and our drivers did a great job, providing the engineers with valuable feedback. But above all, I am pleased that the group has rediscovered its motivation and team spirit. In terms of performance, I don’t think our competitors – one in particular – have shown their true potential over these past days. I think we will only discover the truth about them and about ourselves at the last Barcelona test session. Now, my attention turns to Paris, where tomorrow’s meeting will decide the future of our sport.”
Kimi: “Working as a team”
Maranello, 27 November – Kimi Raikkonen ended his 2014 season with a day of testing at Abu Dhabi and before returning to Maranello, where he will take part in further 2015 development work alongside the team, he summed up how testing had gone and what the near future held in store for the Scuderia. “The components we tested in Abu Dhabi have produced a lot of useful data, which can now be analysed along with that from Sunday’s Grand Prix. The team’s priorities are clear and we are well aware what are the areas that did not match up to our expectations. I am sure that thanks to the knowledge we acquired over the course of the season, we will be able to develop a more competitive car. Clearly, how much progress we make depends on the time available and the possibilities presented by the regulations, which for the moment, impose certain limits for everyone, but I have every confidence in the ability of the team.” Working as a team. Kimi also commented on his new team-mate, Sebastian Vettel: “It was nice that he joined us in the garage for the first day of testing, although I have to say that didn’t surprise me, because I know what he’s like and his approach to work. I think we can enjoy ourselves on track together, both of us fighting to be ahead of the other, while also working as a team to reach the common target of progressing in order to get the Scuderia back to the level it should be at.” The right man. Raikkonen also commented on the change at the top of the Scuderia: “I’ve known Maurizio Arrivabene for a long time I believe he is an extremely competent person and perfect for the role of Team Principal that he has been given. Maurizio has known Ferrari and the business of Formula 1 for a long time and I believe he has the ability to motivate and push the team back to the level it deserves to be at. Everyone in the team, in every area of activity will now have to tackle a lot of hard work to get the new car ready.”