2016 BARCELONA SECOND TEST – DAY ONE
CIRCUIT DE BARCELONA-CATALUNYA, TUESDAY MARCH 1, 2016
Date Tuesday 1 March 2016
Driver Fernando Alonso
Location Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya (4.655km/2.892 miles)
Best lap-time 1m24.735s
Today, Fernando Alonso returned to the cockpit for the first day of the second and final pre-season test at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. Like last week, the weather was dry and sunny all day, although it started off cold, which meant the track temperatures were low early on in the morning session.
The focus of today’s running was to bed in a new power unit, which had been slightly updated from last week’s to move closer to the specification scheduled to run at the first grand prix in Melbourne. Much of the day’s programme concentrated on engine mode and driveability tests, tyre compound assessments as well as aerodynamic set-up changes.
A technical glitch halted running just before the lunch break, when an electronics issue caused the car to lose telemetry data. This was identified and reset over lunch and Fernando returned to the track shortly after 15:00.
Despite some niggles in the afternoon as the new power unit bedded into the chassis, today’s run programme was concluded successfully, and Fernando completed a total of 93 laps.
Tomorrow, Jenson Button will once again take over the driving duties as the team continues the MP4-31 test programme.
“After the disappointment of not being able to complete much running at the end of last week’s test, it was positive to get so many laps on the board today.
“We tested a number of different configurations and spent a lot of time working on the power unit and collecting data from the aerodynamics. It’s too early to tell a real difference compared to the engine last week, as we focussed today on shorter runs and adjusting the balance and set-up of the car.
“However, today’s full day of running has been a good start to the second test, and has provided us with lots of useful data that we can analyse overnight before Jenson continues the programme tomorrow.”
Director of Engineering
“After a busy and long weekend for the whole team out here at the track, back at MTC and in Sakura, we started the second test off on a positive note. It’s always encouraging to get some good mileage under our belt on the first day.
“We spent a good chunk of the day evaluating the power unit functionality, although our attention hasn’t yet turned to assessing outright performance. The important thing was to get as many miles on this package as possible, so from that point of view and the amount of data we have collected today, it has been very positive.
“We will continue to maximise our track time over the coming days, to work on ironing out reliability niggles and move on to longer runs. We also have some new aero parts arriving overnight, which will be assessed on track tomorrow with Jenson.”
Honda R&D Co Ltd Head of F1 Project & Executive Chief Engineer
“We had an unexpected control electronics shutdown just before lunch time, believed to be the cause of a software problem. Apart from that, we were able to run a decent amount of laps to finish the first day of the second test in Barcelona.
“On the power unit side, we tested many different modes of running to prepare for the race, so it was a busy day for the system engineers. As a package, we were able to test different balances of the car and tyres together with the power unit.
“We are looking to perform further detailed checks on the power unit during tomorrow’s testing.”
Today’s unofficial testing times
1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1m23.022s 82 laps
2. Valtteri Bottas Williams 1m23.229s 123 laps
3. Fernando Alonso McLaren 1m24.735s 93 laps
4. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m24.836s 72 laps
5. Daniil Kvyat, Red Bull 1m25.049s 69 laps
6. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m25.051s 90 laps
7. Max Verstappen Toro Rosso 1m25.176s 144 laps
8. Nico Hulkenberg Force India 1m25.336s 121 laps
9. Felipe Nasr Sauber 1m25.493s 103 laps
10. Kevin Magnussen Renault 1m25.760s 119 laps
11. Esteban Gutierrez Haas 1m26.661s 23 laps
12. Rio Haryanto Manor 1m27.625s 45 laps
Jenson will return to the cockpit of the MP4-31 tomorrow.
Four days (Tuesday 1 March – Friday 4 March).