JEREZ TEST – day three: “A baseline we can really work with”

 

Date Thursday February 9 2012
Driver Lewis Hamilton
Location Circuito de Jerez
Track length 4.423km
Weather Extremely cold in the morning, but warm and sunny from late-morning onwards. Maximum ambient temperature 14.2°C, maximum track temperature 27.8°C
Laps completed 80
Kilometres covered   354km
Best laptime   1m19.464s at 12:14
Programme Lewis Hamilton stepped into MP4-27 for the first time today, taking over from Jenson Button, who had conducted the previous two days’ testing.

As with Jenson, the first day was about acclimatising Lewis to the new car, finding a workable set-up direction and ironing out a few minor issues following Lewis’s initial feedback.

After completing 80 laps, and setting a 1m19.464s best, Lewis declared himself happy and comfortable with the new car.

He said:

“Today felt pretty good considering it was my first time in the new car. My initial feelings are pretty positive, despite going through a long, tough programme of initial tests – there were no nasty surprises, which is pleasing.

“This year’s car feels a bit different from last year’s: in 2011, we had so much stability from the rear-end, particularly in the high-speed corners – but we’re now having to find that grip elsewhere, or, at least, take grip off the front and somehow offload it at the rear.

“This car’s baseline is something we can really work with. I know the men and women back at the factory will take a lot from this test and translate it into something new and even better for the next test. The car feels reasonably quick – and that’s a nice feeling.

“Bringing Didier Coton onboard [with my management team] is one of the steps I’ve taking to keep myself 100 per cent focused on my main goal of winning the world championship. Didier’s got a huge amount of racing experience and will really strengthen my management team – he’s been a good friend of mine for many years, and has great experience with the team and the Formula 1 paddock. He’ll be there when I need him.”

 

Driver for day four Lewis Hamilton
Duration of test Four days (February 7-10)
   

  Unofficial testing times

Pos Driver Constructor Time Laps

1

Nico Rosberg Mercedes AMG

1m17.631

118

2

Kimi Raikkonen Lotus

1m18.419

117

3

Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing

1m19.297

96

4

Lewis Hamilton Vodafone McLaren Mercedes

1m19.464

80

5

Jean-Eric Vergne Scuderia Toro Rosso

1m19.734

79

6

Sergio Perez Sauber

1m19.770

48

7

Fernando Alonso Ferrari

1m20.412

67

8

Bruno Senna Williams

1m21.293

125

9

Giedo van der Garde Caterham F1

1m23.324

174

10

Jules Bianchi Force India F1

2