Testing continued at two Spanish circuits on January 17, with three teams in action at Jerez and two at Valencia. At Jerez Renault, in dark blue and yellow livery, continued its first programme of work with the new R27, Giancarlo Fisichella being...
Testing continued at two Spanish circuits on January 17, with three teams in action at Jerez and two at Valencia. At Jerez Renault, in dark blue and yellow livery, continued its first programme of work with the new R27, Giancarlo Fisichella being joined by teammate Heikki Kovalainen in a second new car. Fisichella was the fastest of the four drivers present, 1:20.201, and Kovalainen was fourth.
After an engine problem during Tuesday's initial outing Fisichella completed a race distance, while Kovalainen began to familiarise himself with the handling of the new car. Putting mileage on the R27 was the main focus of the day and Fisichella was happy with the progress despite the less than optimal track conditions.
"This is a brand new car, so to complete a full race distance on the first proper day of running, without any problems, is a very good achievement," said the Italian. "It means that we are already in a strong position with reliability, although there is still a lot of work to do ahead of the first race."
Anthony Davidson was on duty for Super Aguri and was second on the time sheet on the team's first day, less than a tenth off Fisichella. He worked on analyzing tyres and development of control systems, a continuation of the programme at the end of last year. Davidson is scheduled to be back on track tomorrow.
Williams test driver Kazuki Nakajima had his second day on track and was third fastest in the all-blue interim car. His programme consisted of analysis of cooling options and electronic system checks in the morning and he completed a race distance. In the afternoon Nakajima did traction control work and safety car simulation.
At Valencia McLaren and BMW Sauber were at work after the launches of their new cars on Monday and Tuesday respectively. Fernando Alonso gave the McLaren MP4-22 its initial shakedown of system checks and engine mapping and clocked the quickest time of 1:20.050. A minor oil leak was the only gremlin the team reported.
"We achieved our principle objectives, with regards how the car felt to drive," said Alonso. "Obviously today was just a shakedown and as a result running was limited. We were working in a very concentrated manner and attention was being paid to every detail of the car. I feel that over all today has been really good and the next few weeks testing will be very productive."
Nick Heidfeld was second fastest in the new BMW Sauber F1.07, just over a tenth off Alonso, and teammate Robert Kubica was the third man on the time sheet in the F1.06B. Their programme was mainly systems checks and set up work. Tester Sebastian Vettel is scheduled to join on Thursday to help carry out further system checks and data collection.
"One day after the launch this was a very productive day of testing in Valencia with the new BMW Sauber F1.07," said technical director Willy Rampf. "We almost completed our system checks. Beside this Nick started with some set-up work. This had a good impact on the handling of the car. We are happy so far."