Barcelona F1 test: Verstappen quickest on second morning

Max Verstappen topped the times on the final morning of the in-season Barcelona Formula 1 test on Wednesday, as Renault's upgraded engine continued to shine.

Barcelona F1 test: Verstappen quickest on second morning
Pascal Wehrlein, Mercedes AMG F1 Team W07
Stoffel Vandoorne, McLaren MP4-31 Test and Reserve Driver
Antonio Fuoco, Ferrari SF16-H
Felipe Massa, Williams FW38
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB12
Jordan King, Manor Racing MRT05
Felipe Massa, Williams FW38
Stoffel Vandoorne, McLaren MP4-31 Test and Reserve Driver
Felipe Massa, Williams FW38
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB12

The Dutchman, returning to the cockpit of his F1 car for the first time since his Spanish Grand Prix triumph, completed a mixture of medium and soft tyre runs.

But it was on a soft tyre run an hour before the lunch break that Verstappen delivered his best time of the day so far.

His 1m23.267s lap was just shy of Sebastian Vettel's best effort from a qualifying simulation on Tuesday, and only two tenths slower than he had managed himself on Saturday in Barcelona.

More encouraging than the time though was the fact that Verstappen's Red Bull was producing competitive figures through the speed traps, confirming the power progress that Renault appears to have made.

McLaren's Stoffel Vandoorne was second fastest in the morning, with his best effort of 1m24.006s helped by using super soft tyres, just as teammate Jenson Button had done yesterday.

Vandoorne was completing a raft of aerodynamic and mechanical checks for his Woking-based outfit, which included running with some aero rakes early on.

Daniil Kvyat, having his first test for Toro Rosso since his shock switch there for the Spanish Grand Prix, ran the soft tyre to set the third fastest time of 1m24.737s.

The Russian's focus over the day was to get himself much more comfortable with his new car, having had little time to prepare for his first race back at Faenza last weekend.

Kevin Magnussen delivered further evidence of Renault progress to set the fourth fastest time on soft tyres, with a lap of 1m25.133s that was just three hundredths of a second quicker than Mercedes' Pascal Wehrlein who had been drafted in at the last minute.

Renault reserve Esteban Ocon had been due to test for Mercedes on the second day, but the Brackley-based team said that it had elected to evaluate new parts that required a more experienced driver in the car.

It means Ocon will have to wait until the in-season test at Silverstone to get his first taste of the Mercedes, although his compensation may be that he gets two days running there because neither Nico Rosberg nor Lewis Hamilton are eligible to take part.

Esteban Gutierrez continues Haas' set-up work to set the sixth fastest time, ahead of Ferrari young driver Antonio Fuoco, who was buoyed by his fan club erecting a huge banner that dominated the grandstand opposite the pits.

At Williams, Felipe Massa continued evaluating the radical double decker wing that appeared on Tuesday and is aimed at simulating 2017 downforce levels. His best time was 1m27.167s.

There was one red flag, 15 minutes before the lunch break, caused by Jordan King in the Manor running off the track at Turn 7 and bringing gravel back on to the circuit that needed to be cleared. 

Day 2 morning results

Pos. Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1  Max Verstappen  Red Bull  1:23.267    65
2  Stoffel Vandoorne  McLaren  1:24.006  +0.739  45
3  Daniil Kvyat  Toro Rosso  1:24.737  +1.470  68
4  Kevin Magnussen  Renault  1:25.133  +1.866  53
5  Pascal Wehrlein  Mercedes  1:25.166  +1.899  65
6  Esteban Gutierrez  Haas  1:26.402  +3.135  41
7  Antonio Fuoco  Ferrari  1:26.403  +3.136  55
8  Alfonso Celis  Force India  1:26.855  +3.588  37
9  Felipe Massa  Williams  1:27.167  +3.900  59
10  Jordan King  Manor  1:27.615  +4.348  48

 

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