Nico Hulkenberg led the way for Force India in the morning session of the third day of Formula 1’s opening pre-season test at Barcelona, heading Kevin Magnussen by seven tenths.
Hulkenberg’s best lap, a 1m25.286s, came on medium tyres in the second hour, with nobody opting to use the super-soft or ultra-soft tyres that were in evidence on Tuesday.
Renault driver Magnussen however set his best lap on softs, finishing 0.728s adrift of Hulkenberg and completing a healthy total of 62 laps after the team’s reliability woes on Tuesday.
Nico Rosberg spent the first hour trading fastest times with namesake Hulkenberg, before settling into more long runs on medium tyres. He was 0.798s off the pace, with 74 laps on the board.
Carlos Sainz was the next most productive on 66 laps, followed by Magnussen on 62.
At the opposing end of the spectrum, Daniil Kvyat only completed 29 laps after spending a large part of the morning in the garage, Red Bull reporting no specific issue with the Russian’s car.
Kvyat nonetheless recovered to set the fifth quickest time late on, ahead of Felipe Massa (Williams), Felipe Nasr (Sauber), Jenson Button (McLaren) and Romain Grosjean (Haas), who were all within two seconds of the pace.
Bringing up the rear were Manor’s Rio Haryanto, who completed 25 laps before bringing out the red flags inside the final half hour with a spin at Turn 5, and Kimi Raikkonen.
The Finn made his first appearance of the session over three hours in - his Ferrari suffering a problem with the fuel system - and failed to set a lap time at all, only completing four installation runs.
Morning test times, Day 3:
|1||N. Hülkenberg||Force India||1:25.286||37|
|4||C. Sainz||Toro Rosso||1:26.239||66|
|5||D. Kvyat||Red Bull||1:26.497||29|