Sepang hosted the first day of the in-season testing on Tuesday, and it was BMW’s Robert Kubica who led the other nine drivers on the timing sheets, going just over a tenth quicker than Kimi Raikkonen. Lapping the Malaysian circuit 92 times, Kubica focused on some new aero parts as well as working on electronic componants and ensuring the F1.07 can withstand the scorching temperatures.
Raikkonen couldn’t fully capitalise on his Ferrari’s speed and wound up second, just ahead of Alex Wurz’s Williams. Bridgestone were also present with a new tyre marking that Wurz used while touring the circuit. They tried two options, the first being a red dot on the tyres sidewall, and the second being a white stripe painted in one the grooves.
It was generally a test of new parts for most of the teams, with Honda taking a step forward with their new front suspension and heavily revised aero package. The Japanese marque managed fourth best in the days timings. McLaren were also testing new things in a bid to reduce the gap to their Maranello-based rivals, but ended up in fifth with Pedro De La Rosa at the helm.
1. Kubica – BMW – 1m36.187s
2. Raikkonen – Ferrari – 1m36.302s
3. Wurz – Williams – 1m36.334s
4. Barrichello – Honda – 1m36.826s
5. De La Rosa – McLaren – 1m37.106s
6. Montagny – Toyota – 1m37.267s
7. Sato – Super Aguri – 1m37.389s
8. Coulthard – Red Bull Racing – 1m37.609s
9. Piquet Jr – Renault – 1m38.199s
10. Speed – Toro Rosso – 1m38.503s