The first day of testing at Spain’s Jerez track and Bahrain’s Sakhir circuit got underway today, and all but one of the drivers were piloting their new 2009 cars. It was the first full day of testing for Red Bull Racing with their RB5, launched yesterday morning but not getting very far on its installation laps. Sebastian Vettel did better today though, leading the 2009 challengers with only Sebastien Buemi beating him in the slightly modified 2008 chassis. Although a gearbox sensor did go wrong on the new Red Bull, causing Vettel to stop early
Only a small rain shower in Spain dampened spirits as the teams got to work on set up evaluation and gathering useful data. Nico Hulkenberg was on track for Williams, putting the FW31 through its paces and finishing ahead of the McLaren of Heikki Kovalainen by 0.2s. Nelson Piquet Jr was the final driver on the Jerez circuit today, finishing in fifth and 1.2s adrift of Vettel’s pace.
As the car is so new, we learn something with every lap and we have some useful data to go through this evening. The forecast looks better for tomorrow so hopefully we can continue the work we started today. Nelson Piquet Jr.
In Bahrain, three teams were present; Toyota, Ferrari and BMW. Timo Glock headed the table with a 1m33.501s, just over 0.1s faster than Felipe Massa in the Ferrari F60. Robert Kubica finished in third, although the Pole was only 0.201s shy of Glock at the top of the finishing order. Once again, Ferrari had opted to test away from the main group, heading out to Bahrain in the search of good weather. While the day was mostly sunny, fog in the morning prevented the cars from going out too early.
After the weather intervened during our Portugal test, this was our first real chance to give the TF109 a run in dry conditions. The fog held us up briefly at the start but it wasn’t a major problem. We did a lot of set-up work and in the end we found a good direction.
The car felt quite consistent so this is already a positive sign. We got through a lot of laps so this was an encouraging start to the test. Timo Glock.
|1.||Sebastien Buemi Scuderia Toro Rosso||1m19.660s||104 Laps|
|2.||Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing||1m22.177s||61 Laps|
|3.||Nico Hulkenberg Williams||1m22.443s||82 Laps|
|4.||Heikki Kovalainen McLaren||1m22.643s||58 Laps|
|5.||Nelson Piquet Jr. Renault||1m23.313s||35 Laps|
|1.||Timo Glock Toyota||1m33.501s||82 Laps|
|2.||Felipe Massa Ferrari||1m33.615s||98 Laps|
|3.||Robert Kubica BMW||1m33.702s||95 Laps|