Mechnical problems for Bortolotti in STR4

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F1 Test, Jerez, Circuit Permanente de Jerezes

An Italian driving for an Italian team was our scenario today, as Mirko Bortolotti took over from Brendon Hartley in the cockpit of the STR4. The 19 year old from Trento had already experienced the joys of Formula 1, when he drove a Ferrari at Fiorano just over a year ago as his prize for winning the 2008 Italian Formula 3 championship. This year, Mirko, who is a product of the Red Bull Junior Driver programme, finished fourth in the FIA Formula 2 series.

The car suffered some mechanical problems in the morning, which reduced running time. Therefore in the afternoon, the team opted to run Mirko almost continuously to make up for lost time. The technical programme was similar to yesterday’s, with the team carrying out aero and brake evaluation, as well as running the car heavy to replicate the full fuel load required as a result of the banning of race refueling next season.

“I really enjoyed today,” said Mirko Bortolotti at the end of the session. “Being able to help the team with testing for next year was very interesting, even though I had to spend some time in the garage in the morning. With so little testing allowed in Formula 1, today was very important for me, giving me the chance to do some miles.”

For tomorrow’s final day of testing of 2009, Mirko Bortolotti will drive in the morning, with Brendon Hartley taking over in the afternoon.