Sebastian Vettel continued his strong start to the new Formula 1 season after topping the times on the second day of the Barcelona test.
After setting the benchmark on the opening day, the Ferrari driver posted a session best 1:22.812s while testing Pirelli’s new ultra-soft tyre.
The time arrived shortly before midday with Vettel going on to chalk up 126 laps before his SF16-H came to a halt, bringing out the red flags with five minutes of the session remaining.
“So far the first thing that matters is that the car is reacting and doing what I asked for,” said Vettel.
“Now obviously it is crucial that Kimi (Raikkonen) has a similar impression.
“About the engine, I can say it is nice to have a bit more sound coming back, it is still not as loud as it could or should be but it is a lot better than it was, (it) now sounds a bit more like Formula 1.”
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo emerged as Vettel’s nearest challenger with the Australian’s best, also on the ultra-soft tyre, 0.7s adrift of his former team-mate.
The Perth native managed to chalk up 112 laps behind the wheel of the Mllton Keynes squad’s RB12.
“It was a good day. We did pretty much every run on our schedule and run plans are always pretty optimistic so I think we’ll take that today,” said Ricciardo.
“We put in over 100 laps and we ran pretty faultlessly. It was good for me to get a lot more laps.”
Sergio Perez was third fastest in the Force India VJM09 ahead of the medium tyre shod Mercedes of Nico Rosberg, who completed the most mileage with an impressive 172 laps in the books.
Marcus Ericsson put Sauber in fifth ahead of F1’s newest team Haas F1, who enjoyed a much stronger display at the hands of Esteban Gutierrez.
The Williams of Valtteri Bottas was seventh ahead of Manor’s Pascal Wehrlein, with the pair both quicker than the McLaren of Fernando Alonso.
Renault’s troublesome start to pre-season testing continued when Jolyon Palmer encountered a turbo issue which restricted him to 42 laps.
Meanwhile, Max Verstappen completed the runners in the Toro Rosso STR11 which brought out the red flags when it stopped on track earlier in the day.
Result: Formula 1 Pre-Season Test Day 2, Barcelona
|2||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/TAG Heuer||1:23.525s||+0.715s||112|
|3||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1:23.650s||+0.840s||101|
|11||Max Verstappen||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1:26.539s||+3.729s||121|