The Honda Racing F1 Team moved its testing programme to Jerez in Southern Spain this week as preparations gather pace for the new season. Race drivers Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello were at the wheel of two RA106s and again demonstrated the...
The Honda Racing F1 Team moved its testing programme to Jerez in Southern Spain this week as preparations gather pace for the new season. Race drivers Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello were at the wheel of two RA106s and again demonstrated the early strength of the new package.
Rubens and Jenson began the test on Tuesday and spent the morning session setting up their respective cars. In the afternoon, Rubens completed a race simulation exercise, whilst Jenson ran through a tyre programme over longer runs, together with an aero evaluation. Rubens completed 114 laps setting the third fastest time of the day, with Jenson totalling 139 laps and setting the second fastest time.
Rubens ran through a chassis set-up programme on Wednesday completing 60 laps. Jenson began the day with a tyre evaluation. Following an early engine change due to an electrical problem, he continued the tyre programme in the afternoon session to complete a total of 58 laps, once again setting the second fastest time of the day.
The test programme continued on Thursday with one car. Jenson changed to chassis RA106-02 and began with some early set-up runs before completing a tyre evaluation over long runs during the afternoon session. He completed a total of 119 laps today, running the V8 engine in chassis RA106-02 to its target mileage.
The team will now move to Bahrain where they intend to take advantage of the warmer climate to complete a valuable four-day test at the Bahrain International Circuit which will host the season-opening race in just over four weeks time.
"Following an encouraging start to the week on Wednesday with a lot of laps completed, we had a more difficult second day on Thursday. I had some issues with the brakes which cost track time. We were still able to complete a good set-up programme though which is something I need to continue working on over the next couple of tests. Looking at the test overall, Jenson has had some positive running and our pace seems competitive so I think the signs are very encouraging."
"We've had two great days for putting mileage on the car, covering 139 laps on the first day and 119 laps today. There have been a few small issues over the test but we have solved these today. It's been good to get so many laps in before the Bahrain test next week which will probably be the most important test of the year for us. "
Mark Ellis, Chief Engineer Vehicle Performance:
"Despite a difficult day on Wednesday, this has been another positive test for us. The pace of the RA106 has again been very encouraging and the car has been extremely reliable despite a couple of small issues. We are looking forward to next week's four-day test in Bahrain where we can fully evaluate the latest tyre developments from Michelin in realistic conditions and start our real preparations for the opening races."
Shuhei Nakamoto, Engineering Director, Honda Racing Development:
"We have had some issues with the engine this week so we need to keep focusing on the reliability. We will have some new improvements next week on the engine that we will be running in Bahrain. Overall we are in good shape."