Team Sauber Petronas' new signing Neel Jani (19) conducted his first proper Formula One test today at the Circuit de la Comunitat Valenciana Ricardo Tormo in Valencia, having carried out straight-line tests in Vairano at the end of April. In the...
Team Sauber Petronas' new signing Neel Jani (19) conducted his first proper Formula One test today at the Circuit de la Comunitat Valenciana Ricardo Tormo in Valencia, having carried out straight-line tests in Vairano at the end of April. In the morning he had the opportunity familiarise himself once again with the Sauber Petronas C22 before he ran the day's scheduled programme, which focused on aerodynamic tests for Monaco. He covered 60 laps, with a best time of 1:16.40.
"When I was here the last time I was 16 and my Formula Renault had five times less horsepower," Jani said when asked to describe his impressions of his first proper Formula One test. "This car is very fast, of course, and this test today was quite exhausting for me. Some turns were fairly difficult and this track demanded a lot on the physical side. I felt a heavy pressure on my chest, which made breathing difficult as well. But I was very impressed with how easily this car handled."
"In my opinion it is normal that a young driver like Neel needs a little time to get used to this business and therefore we took it relatively easy with him today," said Test Engineer Giampaolo Dall'Ara. "It was a priority that he should feel comfortable and I must say that he showed good capabilities. He improved his times from lap to lap and was using the electronics quite well. He also managed to do some aerodynamic runs for the Monaco race preparation today. For his age he is pretty knowledgable, which in turn is good for testing. He also has a good attitude towards the team, which speaks well for him."
"Neel absolutely fulfilled our expectations," said physiotherapist Joseph Leberer. "From my point of view he has mastered this first Formula One test very well. He is a rather analytical driver and approaches the goal step by step. His quiet and mature way certainly helps him. Of course, he was surprised about the physical differences he experienced today and he has gained a lot of new impressions which will be additional motivations for him. The next tests will tell more, but now it is up to us to support him."
Jani will conduct further tests for Team Sauber Petronas this season, in conjunction with his race programme in the international Formula Renault V6 with Andreas Jenzer's team. Neel is currently first in the drivers' points standings.