Saturday, 3 March 2012

Perez fastest on wet testing at Barcelona

Sergio Perez was the fastest driver on the penultimate day of pre-season testing at Barcelona, which was disrupted by rain during the day.

Sergio Perez was fastest today
The Mexican driver set the pace for Sauber with a time of 1.22.094 after 114 laps. Perez hands the car over to team mate Kamui Kobayashi tomorrow and said of his final day of running “I am very happy with how my final test day went. We did an intensive programme with qualifying and race preparation, which was important to do. I think we have demonstrated that the car has developed well over the testing period. The team has made the most out of all the information we have collected and certainly is in good shape. Also personally I feel ready for Melbourne.” Jenson Button was 2nd fastest for McLaren, and was a mere 0.009 seconds behind Perez's fastest time. McLaren had brought some new updates today, regarding the front-end aerodynamics, with the 2009 World Champion saying "Immediately when we put them on the car felt much better, there were some areas we knew were lacking but would improve when we put the new parts on. It's a definite step forward but we weren't able to get a perfect set-up but hopefully Lewis will get a nice clean day tomorrow. The feeling is positive." Daniel Ricciardo was third for Toro Rosso, and used the super soft tyres to set his fastest time.

Rain affected running today
Felipe Massa was fourth fastest for Ferrari today, but the focus with the Italian team today was that they had cancelled their drivers press conferences this weekend. Both drivers were due to talk, with Massa tonight and Alonso tomorrow, but these have now being abandoned, causing much intrigue. Paul di Resta was fifth fastest, but used the super soft tyres for his time. Bruno Senna was sixth fastest in the Williams, and brought out the only red flag of the day, a stark contrast with yesterday, when eight were brought out. Heikki Kovalainen was seventh fastest in the Caterham today, just five tenths away from Perez's time.

The heavily revised RB8 on track today
Mark Webber was eighth fastest in the Red Bull, and the defending World Champions caused a massive stir this morning. Webber rolled out in the pit lane with a completely new front wing and redesigned rear end. There were so many new parts on the car that Red Bull chose to fly out a new car to use, as opposed to making the changes to the car they had used over the last two days, which would have been very time consuming. Nico Rosberg was ninth fastest for Mercedes, while Kimi Raikkonen was tenth and slowest after a troubled day for Lotus. The car's power steering failed, and Raikkonen lost a lot of time in the garage while his mechanics fixed the problem. Rain fell on the circuit in the afternoon, which limited the teams running hugely, despite some drivers doing race simulations before the rain came. Meanwhile HRT have confirmed that they will not be running tomorrow, but they are hoping to give their F112 its first run in a filming day on Monday.

Day Three's times in full:
Sergio Perez
Jenson Button
Daniel Ricciardo
Toro Rosso
Felipe Massa
Paul di Resta
Force India
Bruno Senna
Heikki Kovalainen
Mark Webber
Red Bull
Nico Rosberg
Kimi Raikkonen

Keep with my blog for all the opinions, launches and testing updates throughout the winter, as we count down to the Australian Grand Prix.

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