Formula One Test Session Tuesday 5th March 2001 Silverstone Grand Prox Circuit, England The long haul Grands Prix give a traditional opportunity for test drivers to run in Europe while the race drivers are away, and Fernando Alonso and Marc Gene...
Formula One Test Session
Tuesday 5th March 2001
Silverstone Grand Prox Circuit, England
The long haul Grands Prix give a traditional opportunity for test drivers to run in Europe while the race drivers are away, and Fernando Alonso and Marc Gene took advantage of this at Silverstone today. Alonso was driving last season's B201 chassis in Renault colours, and Gene was driving last year's FW23C but with this season's engine.
The session was mainly a combination of 5-lap runs and minor technical problems on both cars. Conditions were cloudy and sunny with a slight breeze, and improved throughout the day.
Both drivers were out early for a slow installation lap each, although when Alonso stopped in the pitlane his wheels seized so the car had to be raised in order to be returned to the garage.
After a quiet hour both cars came out again, Gene for an installation lap and Alonso for a 5-lap run, but the Renault driver backed off during his first flying lap with the car making an unusual sound and returned to the pits.
Gene also suffered some mechanical gremlins as his engine appeared to misfire during a short run. He returned to the pits and the mechanics briefly examined the back of the car. On his return to the track he suffered a brake problem, locking up in the Luffield complex before backing off and pitting.
These minor problems were soon rectified and after lunch Gene did several short stints. He was pushing hard, locking up under braking and twitching slightly in the faster corners. His times tailed off during each stint, initially lapping in the 1m 24s range before decreasing to 1m 25s and then 1m26s before pitting.
Alonso eventually appeared after a couple of hours, also doing several short stints. He was working on systems checks and tyre testing, and ultimately his fastest lap was two and a half seconds shy of Gene's best lap time.
Testing continues tomorrow with Williams and Renault, and Anthony Davidson is scheduled to test for BAR.