Team New Zealand Taupo test notes 2009-01-26

REID SAMPLES FERRARI POWER A1 Team New Zealand's only race winning driver Jonny Reid was back at the wheel of Black Beauty today, for his first opportunity to drive the new Powered by Ferrari Black Beauty. Reid took part in an official A1GP...

REID SAMPLES FERRARI POWER

A1 Team New Zealand's only race winning driver Jonny Reid was back at the wheel of Black Beauty today, for his first opportunity to drive the new Powered by Ferrari Black Beauty.

Reid took part in an official A1GP test at the Taupo Motorsport Park, and worked in closely with Ferrari engineers to further develop the Launch Control system that caused major headaches for New Zealand over the weekend at Taupo.

Over the course of the morning on track, he completed 46 laps, which included a number of simulated race starts as various electronic settings were trialed on Black Beauty by Ferrari and Magnetti Marelli personnel. A1 Team Ireland was also on track, testing fuel system components.

With Reid unable to drive the new Powered by Ferrari A1GP car before the season started, the test session at Taupo today gave him a good feeling for the new car. He reported overall the car to be a big improvement when compared with the first generation A1GP car, and adapted quickly to the new systems and features of the car.

After his early laps were constantly interrupted with the race start simulations, Reid was able to enjoy the chance to run a handful of clear laps later in the test. As can be expected from the experienced twenty-five-year-old Aucklander, Reid was able to record very respectable lap times in a car he had never driven previously.

The test for Reid came about through the need for A1GP to run a car to rectify the issues some nations have experienced with the Launch Control system. The decision to put Reid in the car was made solely to allow New Zealand's most capped A1GP driver the chance of some mileage in the new car. In no way was the test a reaction to the disappointing results from the weekend, and A1 Team New Zealand still holds full confidence in all three drivers that are nominated to drive Black Beauty this season.

No decision has been made to date for which of the team's three drivers will compete for New Zealand at Round Five of the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport, which takes place in South Africa over the weekend 20-22 February.

Jonny Reid, Driver

"Awesome, it's a really stable car. The brakes are a lot better [than the old car] but we still need to do some more work on them"

"It was a reasonably good test. We went through the clutch test for Ferrari and that went really well. It wasn't bogging down as much"

"I got straight down to a reasonable time but there's definitely more there."

Chris Gorne, Chief Engineer

"I was pleasantly surprised and happy with the speed of Jonny in the new car"

"He'd [Jonny] be able to get on the pace straight away"

-credit: new zealand

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Series A1GP
Drivers Jonny Reid