Hockenheim Test - Day one
8 July 2008 - The Force India Formula One Team's pre-German Grand Prix test got underway today at the Hockenheimring, Germany. Adrian Sutil, on driving duties in preparation for his home race in just over a week's time, had a productive day, completing 97 laps and recording the fourth quickest time of the day, just over one second from the session's best time set by British Grand Prix winner Lewis Hamilton.
With the German Grand Prix taking place at the same circuit, work focussed on tuning the VJM01 for the challenges of the 4.574km track, with its long straights, tight chicanes and stadium complex that demands high precision driving. The team also continued to accumulate further data on the new aero and mechanical package raced for the first time in Silverstone.
With rain falling just before and after the lunchtime period and heavy gusty winds, conditions were similar to last week's Silverstone test, however the team completed its full programme with no major mechanical problems. Adrian will continue for the second day of the test tomorrow.
Dominic Harlow, chief race and test engineer
'Today's programme very much followed on from the progress we made at the Silverstone test and British Grand Prix with the new aero and mechanical package. In the morning, we used last weekend's set-up as a baseline and then worked on tuning it for the various challenges of the Hockenheimring. In the afternoon we worked through some reliability items and brake cooling and set-up and made some good, solid progress. Although the rain just before and after lunch and the high winds did slightly disrupt the programme and made it difficult to draw some conclusions, with no major mechanical problems over the day, we were able to complete 97 laps to set a strong basis for tomorrow where we will test some further aero parts.'
'It was quite a good day, we could do lots of laps without any real problems. It was disturbed by the rain quite a bit but at least we did as much dry running as we could have done. We worked on set-up in the morning and I was quite happy with the car. In the afternoon it was more difficult, with the rain and then the wind picked up quite a lot and it was very difficult with the balance, but overall I am quite confident and feel very good. I like the circuit here - the last time I drove it was in 2005 in a Formula 3 car so I was really looking forward to the first go today with the F1 car. It's just amazing how quick it is. I think tomorrow we will have better weather, so conditions should be more consistent. We have a lot to test with some new parts, so all together working to improve the car.'
Driver: Adrian Sutil
Track: Hockenheimring, Germany
Best lap time: 1min 16.516
Laps completed: 97
Kilometres completed 444km
Air temperature: High of 22ºC
Track temperature: High of 27ºC
Weather: Overcast, some showers late morning, high winds in the afternoon