Haas F1 continued to log good mileage in Barcelona today as Esteban Gutierrez added another 89 laps to the total achieved by the brand new team this week.
The Mexican was delayed this morning by a brake overheating issue after the team was too aggressive when blanking off the brake ducts.
Later in the day, an electronics issue caused the car to stop on track, but otherwise it was a good test for the team, whose programme included a race distance.
“I was mentally prepared to be very patient,” said Gutierrez. “I think the team has done a very good job, reacting very quickly to every problem we had.
“It's not easy as [we are] a new group of people, people who on one side don't have experience, but on the other hand we have people with a lot of experience.
“It's been very helpful for the team to get to know each other. It will be important to sit down over the weekend and really co-ordinate ourselves, analyse everything, and use this experience to get ready for next week, and then to consolidate ourselves in preparation for Melbourne.
“There is nothing really bad, particularly. I think we did a good job, and I am very proud of the whole team, and very grateful, because it's really impressive to put the car out and do a fair amount of laps.
“But it's a matter of time, it's a matter of experience, to be more coordinated, to understand ourselves better, the levels of communication. We will get there, it's all about experience.”
Performance testing yet to come
Next week the team will have a chance to explore the performance of the car.
“This week is all about reliability, we are not really focussing on performance,” added Gutierrez. “I think this preparation is very important, and it's very important to have these small issues now, and fix them for next week.
“Next week will be the important days to really experiment with the car and to optimise it for Melbourne. Every day I get in the car it feels better, the team is working better, things are better prepared. With any group of people it's normal, and the rate of improvement has been as we would expect.
“We have a very good baseline and we are working on it and solving all the reliability issues that need to be sorted by the end of this week and we can approach next week in better shape. There are a few bits and pieces around the car, which are temperature related, little things which we expected to have.
“It would be ideal to do more, but I think from the position we found ourselves at the beginning of the test, as a new team, this is what we expected.
“We found a lot of small issues, fortunately not big issues which take time, so I'm confident we will be in good shape to explore the performance of the car.”