The Honda Racing F1 Team completed a three-day test at the Spa Francorchamps circuit in the Ardennes region of Belgium today. The main focus for the test programme this week was to gather chassis set-up data and evaluate the tyres in preparation...
The Honda Racing F1 Team completed a three-day test at the Spa Francorchamps circuit in the Ardennes region of Belgium today. The main focus for the test programme this week was to gather chassis set-up data and evaluate the tyres in preparation for the Belgian Grand Prix which returns to the Formula One calendar in September of this year.
Reserve and Test Driver Christian Klien began the test on Tuesday. Christian spent the morning establishing the baseline set-up of the RA107 car on the damp and green circuit before working through a series of aerodynamic evaluations once the track had completely dried out. Christian ended the day with race start simulations and completed a total of 63 laps.
Jenson Button joined the team in Spa on Wednesday. The track was still wet for the start of the morning session as a result of overnight rain allowing Jenson to complete a short evaluation on the Bridgestone wet tyres. By mid morning, the track dried out sufficiently to switch to dry tyres and Jenson worked through an aero programme alongside chassis set-up work. The changeable Spa weather hit once again in the afternoon as the rain came down to limit the amount of dry running possible. Jenson completed 53 laps over the day.
Rubens Barrichello took over the car for the final day of testing. Further overnight rain limited dry running in the morning although the weather did stay dry for most of the day. Rubens worked through an aero evaluation alongside running the two tyre specifications provided by Bridgestone for this event. He finished the day with race start simulations completing 78 laps in total.
"The weather was very changeable for my day in the car with the track conditions going from wet to dry and wet again. However that is actually quite useful preparation for the race here in September as the weather is always so unpredictable. We therefore concentrated on tyre testing to understand how the tyres operate in the different conditions."
"We were able to complete a good number of laps today as the weather stayed fairly dry and this has provided some useful data on the new aero parts that we ran this week. I had some difficulties with the set-up of the car and the balance is not yet where I would like it to be, however it was a useful test to see how we need to prepare for the race at this circuit."
"Spa is one of the most exciting tracks on the Formula One calendar for a driver so I really enjoyed testing here this week. We focused mainly on aerodynamic evaluations during my day in the car on Tuesday. The track was a little damp at the start of the day but luckily the weather stayed dry which enabled us to get through the planned programme."
Jacky Eeckelaert - Engineering Director:
"With the return of the Belgian Grand Prix to the calendar this year, we will be racing at the Spa Francorchamps circuit with V8 engines and Bridgestone tyres for the first time. Therefore the first part of our test programme this week was dedicated to finding a good set-up for the RA107 car around this particular track."
"The second part of the programme was the evaluation of different aerodynamic parts in preparation for the forthcoming European races. The changeable weather conditions have made it more difficult to complete our planned programme, although the weather has affected all of the teams and you have to expect such conditions at Spa. Nevertheless we have the data now and plenty of time to analyse it in advance of the race in September."