HERCK SIXTH QUICKEST ON THE FIRST TEST DAY IN ABU DHABI
Good start for Scuderia Coloni in Abu Dhabi, where today the engines of the GP2 cars started roaring for the first out of four days of testing. On the Yas Marina Circuit the team gathered valuable informations on the car's behaviour and on the new Pirelli tyres, with the 6th quickest time posted by Michael Herck as a proof of the good job delivered by the team's technical staff.
The day was eagerly awaited by both drivers and teams as it was the first proper testing occasion with the new Dallara GP2/11 car, but the weather did all it could to make things complicated: the morning session was ruined by the large amount of sand brought on the tarmac by the wind and the drivers that went on track (just 15) did only some installation laps, returning immediately to the pits.
The track was cleaned for the afternoon session, but rain fell in the first hour, forcing most of the field in the garages. After that it was decided to extend the session by one hour, and on a quickly drying circuit the drivers finally enjoyed some good track time. Herck completed 29 laps with a best time of 1'50"526, good for 6th place and just 3 tenths adrift from first row. Meanwhile, James Jakes had to face some bad luck, completing only nine laps due to an issue with the throttle sensor. Anyway the problem has been solved, and the brit will be free to unleash all of the GP2's performances tomorrow.
Michael Herck: "I'm really happy of what I did today with Scuderia Coloni. We already tried some interesting solutions and the car improved after each change we made. I think that this, together with my best laptime that was just 0.3 adrift from first row, shows that we are already working in the right direction. Now we must keep working in the same way, with maximum focus, because in the next days laptimes will improve considerably and as we will get closer to the car's limit the infos we will gather will be more and more important".
James Jakes: "It was a really strange day because in the morning we were stopped by bad weather and in the afternoon my session was ruined by a small throttle glitch. Anyway in the few laps I did the car felt great, so I'm looking forward to tomorrow, when I will really start pushing".