With Formula One on a four week break, news and rumours have been a little thin on the ground. But today the circus descended on Circuit de Catalunya to test their machines prior to the start of the Spanish Grand Prix in two weeks time. McLaren were trying out a new front wing which looks quite different and apparently, all going well, could be introduced for the first leg of the European season. McLaren weren’t he only ones trying out new parts either, with several teams bringing new aero devices and remodeled components to Spain for trials.
Kimi Raikkonen led the testing times for day one at Barcelona, setting the fastest lap of 1m21.194s. Takuma Sato went a surprising second in his Super Aguri, pipping Pedro De La Rosa in the McLaren by a tenth. Ralf Schumacher led the Toyota charge in fourth place, while BMW fielded Nick Heidfeld and Honda let Rubens Barrichello try and improve the lacklustre RA107 chassis. Nelson Piquet Jr followed Barrichello, and narrowly beat Vitantonio Liuzzi in the Toro Rosso.
David Coulthard couldn’t match the Toro Rosso’s pace and finished the day in ninth, while Spyker ran two cars with Adrian Valles and Giedo Van Der Garde. Kazuki Nakajima split the Spykers in his Williams, but only managed 43 laps in comparison to most other drivers who averaged at around the 100 mark. Unsurprisingly, Barrichello in the Honda set the most laps at 131 while he attempted to sort the car out in time for next season.
Edit: There is actually a little confusion at the moment, as Pitpass initially reported Ralf Schumacher as fastest, but then changed and followed another well-known site saying he was in fact fourth. But now Paddock Talk is reporting Ralf as quickest on day one. Very confusing, but at the end of the day, it is just testing and ALL times should be taken with a pinch of salt as fuel levels and intent behind the running is relatively unknown.
Edit 2: Apparently Ralf Schumacher missed a chicane on one of his runs, therefore the time doesn’t count towards is running today. This explains why at first he appeared to be fastest, but in fact was fourth overall. Still an achievement for Toyota though.
1. Raikkonen – Ferrari – 1m21.194s
2. Sato – Super Aguri – 1m21.858s
3. De La Rosa – McLaren – 1m21.906s
4. Schumacher – Toyota – 1m21.983s
5. Heidfeld – BMW – 1m22.114s
6. Barrichello – Honda – 1m22.665s
7. Piquet Jr – Renault – 1m22.763s
8. Liuzzi – Toro Rosso – 1m22.771s
9. Coulthard – Red Bull Racing – 1m22.973s
10. Valles – Spyker – 1m23.720s
11. Nakajima – Williams – 1m24.241s
12. Van Der Garde – Spyker – 1m24.990s