Thursday 17th November 2011
Driver: Alexander Rossi (USA)
No of laps: 74
Best time: 1:44:283
Jody Egginton: “It has been another good day. Alexander familiarised himself with the car very quickly and adapted to the new tyres comfortably which meant we could make progress all day. Our initial runs were to get him used to the car and settled with the tyres and the team.
“Part two of the run plan was the second part of the damper programme that we ran yesterday, which provided us with some very interesting data and Alexander gave excellent feedback on the changes we made. We also gained some good data regarding the rear suspension work in general. We then progressed to working on some of prototype Pirelli tyres which reconfirmed what we learned earlier in the week which was good. We then did some performance runs on two compounds – on the supersoft tyres he put in consistent laps although we felt we didn’t extract the optimum time due to the red flag that was shown. He has done a brilliant job on his day’s running and he now has a basis on which to build upon.
“We can see a few areas where he can improve and there is a lot more potential there. With another set of tyres on the final performance run you could expect a half second improvement with Alexander’s lap times.
“The test session has been very useful overall. The various departments at the factory gave us a big list of work to carry out and we accomplished the vast majority of that list which is excellent and the boys have worked extremely hard throughout the test. There were a number of rear end changes as we worked on the suspension, so the team have done a fantastic job to turn everything around and so quickly. Reliability has been good and the drivers have worked very well. I feel they have enjoyed themselves and have provided us with clear, useful feedback and data, so all in all a very successful test indeed.”
Alexander Rossi: “This morning we started off with getting used to the car and finding my way with the T128, as obviously it’s a big step up from GP2, and I felt comfortable quickly as we worked up to a good setup level. Then our focus was on the damper work for the team, which involved various runs and looking ahead to the 2012 season, plus a few changes to the rear of the car and a few runs with the 2012 Pirelli tyres. In the afternoon we did some performance runs, which I wasn’t entirely pleased with, as I felt I could have achieved more, however my first day in the car was positive, and I feel there is a lot more potential to unlock.
“To get behind the wheel and have that much time was really good. I was surprised at how much you learn during a day’s testing. There’s so much to take in, for example the briefing and debriefing sessions, it’s a whole step up from GP2, so it’s been an extremely valuable day.
“It was really good fun to drive the car, and this car and the team are pretty special. Being able to work with the team as a driver was brilliant as I was able to further my relationship with them, with the mechanics and engineers. I now know the team on a personal level and it’s really important to build those relationships. It’s been a good day, and I’m happy to get the experience behind the wheel and I think there is a lot more to come.”