Nico Rosberg sets pace on opening day of final pre-season test in Barcelona

Published: Tuesday 1st March 2016 by The News Editor

Comments (0)

Nico Rosberg topped the timesheets for the first time this winter as Mercedes displayed they have the pace to match their bullet-proof reliability.

Rosberg, who completed 82 laps at the Circuit de Catalunya, set his best time on the faster, soft-tyre compound to end the opening day of the final pre-season test almost a quarter-of-a-second clear of Valtteri Bottas in the Williams.

World champion Lewis Hamilton was also at the wheel of the Mercedes W07 on Tuesday as the Silver Arrows continued to split their drivers.

Hamilton, who took part in the afternoon session in Barcelona, managed 90 laps as Mercedes turned their attentions to longer, race-style simulations with the Briton at the wheel.

Following a poor end to last week’s test, McLaren will be encouraged at the end of day one after Fernando Alonso finished third in the order with 93 laps under his belt.

The Spaniard’s session was not without drama however, after he brought out the red flags just before lunch when his McLaren stopped on track. His team-mate Jenson Button will resume testing duties for the British team on Wednesday.

Elsewhere, Kimi Raikkonen was fourth fastest for Ferrari with the Red Bull of Daniil Kvyat fifth in the standings after a brake problem sidelined the Russian for a large chunk of the session.

Meanwhile, Rosberg believes the decision to delay the introduction of a new qualifying system reflects badly on the sport.

The FIA, Formula One’s governing body, last week announced plans for an elimination-style format to be ready for the start of the new season which gets under way in Melbourne later this month.

But Formula One’s chief executive Bernie Ecclestone has subsequently said that software controlling the system will not be ready until the fifth round of the championship in Spain.

“It’s not very professional, the image that we’re giving with that, going back and forth,” Rosberg said. “It’s not such a major change so it’s good that we’re thinking about it and I think it’s important to bring them in as soon as possible.”

Published: Tuesday 1st March 2016 by The News Editor

Comments (0)

Local business search