Formula One pre-season got into its second day at Jerez, Spain today as teams attempt to improve their understand of their new cars. It's also the first day of track action for World Champion Lewis Hamilton as he takes over the wheel from Nico Rosberg.
The session got underway with the usual installation laps, including for Jenson Button in a still very rough sounding Honda-powered McLaren. Max Verstappen also soon made his debut in the Toro Rosso while Felipe Nasr is in the Sauber C34, taking over from Markus Ericsson who completed the first day of testing for the team.
At approximately 10:15, Pastor Maldonado took the Lotus E23 out for its first run. The team were late to arrive at Jerez and were unable to run on the first day of testing.
At 11:15, Red Bull Racing encountered a problem with the car's front wing as they found out the left hand pillar had broken. After Kvyat reportedly broke the front wing between turns 3 and 4, the team opted to remove the wing entirely, and sent Kyvat out on the track without a front wing. The team essentially had no other option if they wanted to continue some running as there is just one front wing and nose present at the track. A new one however is on its way and should arrive at the track later today.
Running went on without much problems while Red Bull resorted to some practice starts and engine settings tests, usually calling Kvyat in after a single out-lap.
Minutes before 2 o'clock, Lewis Hamilton experienced the first reliability issue so far for Mercedes AMG F1, coming to a halt at the pit entry. Having recovered the car, the team found out a water system problem on the car, sidelining Hamilton for a bit longer than expected. Funnily enough, at the same time a few drops of rain started falling out on track.
Weather remained to be somewhat depressing throughout the day, but it did not appear to affect the performance of the cars all that much.
At 15:30, Pastor Maldonado caused the first red flag of the day, coming to a half in the final corner. The Venezuelan had a fairly solid day with the new Lotus E23, completing 41 laps before his stoppage.
Another half an hour later, running briefly ended as proper rain ended the drizzle, forcing runners to go in and switch tyres. Felipe Nasr proved eager on the conditions and was the most active man in the last hour while Verstappen and Vettel were also regularly seen on track.
Jenson Button made an appearance as well, doing his 6th installation lap of the day after Honda fixed an electronics issue that halted the car for several hours in the afternoon. Even when he did manage to go out though, the engine sounded rough, misfiring continuously and ending up nearly 30 seconds a lap slower than the competition.
|4.||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes AMG F1||1:22.490||+1.506||91|
|5.||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso||1:24.167||+3.183||73|
|6.||Pastor Maldonado||Lotus F1||1:25.802||+4.818||41|
|8.||Daniil Kvyat||Red Bull Racing||No time||-||18|