Narain Karthikeyan #22 12th (45 laps, 180.225 km) 1.18.020
Valencia, Tuesday, 1st February 2011
Hispania Racing has begun to roll this morning in its debut of this 2011 season, at Ricardo Tormo circuit in Cheste. The team was supported by many of its fans, "at home". In their second year in F1 championship, the team joins the paddock again with ambitious and higher targets than last year, and the objective in these pre-season tests will be to get as many miles as possible. The Spanish outfit, which last year did not manage to do any pre-season testing, showed its driver for the first time at the wheel of his single-seat car. The Indian Narain Karthikeyan is back to Formula 1, with a big smile and eager to drive and provide valuable information to their engineers.
It's time to collect data on how Pirelli tyres perform, and Narain did a good job at the controls of the Hispania Racing car, and took advantage of the day to get used to the new medium and soft compounds. The Indian completed a total of 45 laps, clocking a best time of 1.18.020.
Colin Kolles, Team Principal:
"On our first testing of the 2011 season, we are happy to start on one of our home tracks, here in Valencia. In the morning, the track was still green but improved during the day. We had a good day and could run out our program. Narain made no mistakes, and he is still building up his speed. He has to adapt himself again to Formula 1, to get used to the high G-forces and to the new Pirelli tyres. We have to analyze the data of today's testing and I am looking forwards to see how Narain progresses on the following days ".
"It did not seem to be easy to drive the new car after all this time but finally it was not that difficult. I got into it quite quickly and yes, we could have done some more laps but we have some minor problems, but all and all I am very happy to be back, and I think the body and the mind did pretty well, so I am looking forwards for the next two days".
Toni Cuquerella, Chief Race and test engineer Hispania Racing:
"Narain has done a very good job in his return to F1. He has worked in the car systems and has been familiarizing with the new tyres. The collected data will be really helpful to carry over to the new F111".