Alonso to perform Day 2 testing duties for Aston Martin
By Mat Coch
Friday 24th February, 2023 - 5:40am
Aston Martin has confirmed Fernando Alonso will take the wheel of the AMR23 on the second day of F1 pre-season testing in Bahrain.
The Spaniard shared the car with the team’s new reserve driver, Felipe Drugovich, as Lance Stroll sits out through injury.
Aston Martin initially only announced its driver line-up for the first of the three days of running before confirming its Friday plans late on Thursday evening.
“Fernando will carry out a full day of driving duties in Bahrain on Friday,” it announced.
“Felipe will remain on standby, and our line-up for Saturday will be reviewed and confirmed in due course.”
Alonso ended Thursday’s running second fastest behind last year’s world champion, Max Verstappen.
The Spaniard’s best time was 0.029s slower than his Dutch rival’s in a day that saw Aston Martin log a neat 100 laps between its two drivers.
“Overall I am pleased with the first official day of testing here in Bahrain in the AMR23,” said Alonso of the opening day.
“As a team, we reached 100 laps in total, which is a strong start for the first day despite some minor issues that we resolved.
“We are still experimenting with lots of different things, so every lap we do is important and we learn something new about the car every time we go out.
“These first steps are always intriguing and so far I am enjoying this part of the winter preparation.
“We will use the information and learning from today to optimise things further tomorrow.”
Drugovich is set to remain in Bahrain beyond the end of pre-season testing with both he and fellow reserve driver Stoffel Vandoorne scheduled to attend next weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix.
That could see one of the pair race for Aston Martin as questions linger over whether Stroll, who suffered hand and wrist injuries in a cycling accident, will be fit in time.
Before then, two days of testing remain, with track action on Friday starting at 10:00 local time.
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