GP2

Racing Engineering Jerez test summary

Racing Engineering press release

Racing Engineering very happy with the Jerez testing.

Nathanael Berthon
Nathanael Berthon

Photo by: GP2 Media Service

Racing Engineering came away from the three days of testing at Jerez very pleased with the results achieved as they completed all their planned workload.

The Tuesday morning session was held under sunny skies although the temperatures were not high. Both of the Racing Engineering drivers used the session to concentrate on working on the set-up of their cars and to get used to racing their Dallara chassis after the winter lay-off. The GP2 tyre supplier Pirelli had provided P Zero slick Hard (Prime) and Medium (Option) compounds for the three days of testing.

At the end of the opening session Fabio Leimer had completed 18 laps with a fastest time of 1:27.124 which placed him 14th whilst Nathanaël Berthon was a little slower with a lap time of 1:27.917 after 14 laps which was the 20th fastest time.

Temperatures were higher for the afternoon session although lap times were generally .2 to .3 of a second slower. With the Racing Engineering drivers happy with the work they had carried out in the morning both men were able to run more laps and look for some faster laps. Fabio Leimer was immediately amongst the fastest runners and by the end of the session his 32 laps gave him a fastest lap of 1:26.776 which was the 4th fastest time. Nathanaël Berthon was also setting some fast times and his 28 laps saw him set the 8th fastest time with a lap of 1:27.205, less than half a second behind his team-mate.

Wednesday saw the weather remain sunny and in a morning session that was red-flagged twice due to incidents Fabio Leimer continued to be amongst the quicker runners finishing the session in 10th place with a time of 1:25.845. Nathanaël Berthon was just 0.8 seconds slower with a time of 1:26.648.

Most teams opted to run race simulations during the afternoon so times were much slower and once again two red flags made the session difficult for both the teams and their drivers. At the end of the session Leimer had set a fastest lap of 1:29.449 whilst his team-mate Berthon set a 1:30.547 but his track time was curtailed by on off into a gravel trap.

The final day of testing proved to be eventful when the morning session had to be stopped after thirty minutes due to a piece of curb on the track coming away. The session was stopped for forty five minutes for repairs to be made and it was decided to amalgamate the remainder of the session together with the afternoon session. Three further red flags caused further interruptions to the schedule.

Once again the Racing Engineering team decided to concentrate on their race setup and no attempt to set fast laps were made by either driver and, at the end of the session, Leimer had set a fastest time of 1:26.342 after 56 laps and Berthon’s best time was just four tenths slower at 1:26.747 after 40 laps.

The Racing Engineering team are now heading back to their nearby base at Sanlúcar de Barrameda to prepare for the final pre-season testing at Barcelona which commences on Tuesday March 6th for three days.

Thomas Couyotopoulo, Sporting Director of Racing Engineering:
"We have been very busy during these three days of testing in Jerez due to the extensive program we planned to do. The new 2012 regulations opened new possibilities and combinations of choices, which make the work more complicated, but also more interesting. But this also means it's harder to compare the performance of 26 cars during a test day. We still have a lot to do and will work hard again in Barcelona to continue with our development and preparation work."

Fabio Leimer:
"The last three days were very positive. Everything we planned to test, we could actually do and we had no problem with that. We gained a lot of important information and were also able to obtain more insights about the new tyres, prime and option. Today we were also doing some long runs and this brought us ahead. I am very satisfied with the last three days and now we prepare the next three days in Barcelona."

Nathanaël Berthon:
"We had three days of hard work with a really big program. We never searched for the fast lap times, but worked hard having what will be necessary for the championship in mind. I think with the program we did, we have a lot of information to work with now and we will have a lot of work in Barcelona as well with the goal to be strong in Barcelona."

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About this article
Series GP2
Drivers Fabio Leimer , Nathanael Berthon
Teams Racing Engineering
Tags berthon, leimer, racing engineering