Today was the first of four days of testing at the Circuit de Catalunya, Barcelona – and as you can see from the timing screen here, Sebastian Vettel fired a warning shot to the rest of the teams and drivers, by stealing Alonso’s P1 result in the dying moments of the test.
Red Bull are still the team to beat, or so it seems – it’s tricky to know how much to read into the timings, but Vettel’s lap was over a second clear of Alonso.
Marussia Virgin completed a reassuring 116laps with Jerome D’Ambrosio at the wheel – great for them that the car’s running well and likewise for Jerome to get all that mileage under his belt before the season kicks off.
The teams also had chance to try out the new Pirelli wet tyres, with the track being fairly damp at the start of the day – every little bit of experience will help. Heikki Kovalainen is still smiling and positive for the rest of the test following a few niggles today
“It was good to start the day with some runs on the intermediates in proper damp conditions. There wasn’t a lot of standing water on the track but it was pretty damp all round – we needed to try out the inters in these conditions so we’ve now amassed some very useful data on those. After that we wanted to do a race distance but the gearbox problem meant we couldn’t complete that part of the plan. Despite this I’m still finding that the car has good balance and is basically a decent package – we’ll sort out the problems and tomorrow we’ll try the race distance again and see where we are after that.” – Heikki Kovalainen
We’ll be bring you more news from Catalunya over the next few days, but for now here’s a great photo gallery of images from today’s session (shot by Octane Photos for Badger GP)