After Michael Schumacher topped the timesheets earlier in test, it was another golden oldie who set the fastest time on the last day in Spain.
Rubens Barrichello, driving the rather pleasingly plain Williams, finished the day on 1’19.832, ahead of Kamui Kobayashi in the Sauber and Fernando Alonso in his Ferrari. Not only was the veteran Brazilian quickest on the day, he was also the fastest driver throughout the test overall.
Indeed, being half a second clear of any other competitor over the course of the four day test heralds, we would like to think, good things for the Willams team in the coming season.
Unfortunately for us (and all other Williams fans out there) such testing times are hardly ever an indicator of future success. Given the fact that Sebastian Vettel’s Red Bull ended the day in eighth place, more than two seconds off the pace, we’re not going to put the Sett on the reliability of the results. After all, Hispania have yet to do any testing yet. We have high hopes…
The reality is that, with so many teams running so many different setups, it’s virtually impossible to know the relative pace of each of the cars. Then again, it’s fun trying, isn’t it?
A small bonus for the teams came when towards the very end of the day in Jerez the rain started to fall, which was enough time to give some of the drivers a chance to sample wet weather running. New tyres, the return of KERS and adjustable rear wings? Good luck in the first proper wet weather running of the season chaps…
The other big story of the day was Bruno Senna’s first outing in the Renault, finishing the day in fifth place. He reported on his Twitter page that it was “a successful first morning in the Lotus Renault. A very full test program, a great feeling, good pace but more work to do…”.
We sense that he knows he won’t be in the car next season, with the drive seemingly on the way to Nick Heidfeld. When we at Badger suggested Heidfeld would be the perfect driver for the Renault team towards the end of last season, we were hoping he would have been partnering Robert Kubica, not replacing him.
Testing gets underway again five days from now, with the teams traveling to Barcelona for four days of running.