- Oct 27, 2014
Pastor Maldonado made good use of super-soft tyres to go fastest for a second time in this four-day Barcelona test, as McLaren suffered yet more reliability setbacks.
With rain showers making testing form yet more unpredictable, the Venezuelan Lotus driver was one of five to do more than a hundred laps today; the longest run belonged to Max Verstappen in his Toro Rosso, going quickest in the morning session and finishing 2nd fastest after 129 laps, although his car stopped towards the end of the afternoon session. Sebastian Vettel spun the Ferrari into the gravel on his first lap out in the morning, but still managed 105 laps and 5th, Lewis Hamilton completed another solid 101 laps for Mercedes in 3rd, and Russian youngster Daniil Kvyat continued Red Bull’s upturn in fortunes by running for 112; has the team got over their initial car troubles?
Alas for McLaren, their answer to that same question was a false dawn. Jenson Button could only manage 24 laps, at best one-and-a-half seconds off the next slowest time (Valtteri Bottas’ Williams in 9th), with MGU-K problems keeping the car stationary for much of the day. And ironically, the cause of the failure was the seal which Honda specifically redesigned for the energy recovery system, to replace the old seal which failed on Thursday but yesterday held out long enough for Fernando Alonso to complete 59 laps. Honda is hoping to re-engineer the faulty part for tomorrow, but after today the teams are now more than halfway through their allowed 12 days of testing. With less than a month before the season starts, Alonso has revealed he suspects McLaren and Honda’s issues may be too much to overcome before the first race: "We will arrive in Australia hoping it was in June or July, but it's in March and I don't know if we will arrive completely ready," said the Spaniard, "but we will arrive in the best conditions we can. I am happy with the progress we are making."
Pascal Wehrlein returned from standing in at Mercedes to test Force India’s 2014 car, focusing on set-up work as he went 8th fastest, Ericsson completed Sauber’s fastest lap on the soft tyre in 4th, and Felipe Massa shared time in the Williams with Bottas to go 5th.
First Barcelona Test Day Three Results
1. Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Mercedes 1:24.348 104 laps
2. Max Verstappen Toro Rosso-Renault 1:24.739 129 laps
3. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:26.076 101 laps
4. Marcus Ericsson Sauber-Ferrari 1:26.340 53 laps
5. Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:26.407 105 laps
6. Daniil Kvyat Red Bull-Renault 1:26.589 112 laps
7. Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 1:26.912 55 laps
8. Pascal Wehrlein Force India-Mercedes 1:27.333 81 laps
9. Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 1:27.556 55 laps
10. Jenson Button McLaren-Honda 1:29.151 24 laps
Last edited by a moderator: