Testing re-commenced earlier today at the Barcelona track, Circuit de Catalunya. It was the first test since the Brazilian Grand Prix finale at the beginning of November, and a lot of teams were running new technology due to be implemented for the 2009 campaign. BMW rolled out a concept of the F1.09, complete with skinny rear wing, larger front wing as well as KERS and no aerodynamic features on the bodywork. The car was pretty ugly, but this is the future of Formula One, and both Christian Klien and Robert Kubica were given a chance to drive the new machine.
It was Scuderia Toro Rosso hopeful Takuma Sato that set the pace, driving an old STR3 but with slick tyres, and beating fellow hopeful Sebastien Buemi in the sister car. Experienced test driver Alex Wurz wound up third after a full days running, driving a modified Honda RA108. Pedro De La Rosa tested McLaren’s KERS system, while Gary Paffett had added ballast to simulate the weight of the system in his MP4-23. Luca Badoer also carried extra ballast to simulate running the KERS system, and along with Marc Gene, were down in the tables.
Honda also evaluated Bruno Senna and Lucas Di Grassi in the RA108, allowing both drivers a chance to run around the Catalan circuit. Red Bull Racing let world rally champion Sebastien Loeb loose in an RB3, and Giedo Van Der Garde was also allowed to test, having recently signed a contract with the Enstone-based squad. Unfortunately, Van Der Garde’s run was brought to an early end when crashed after just 27 laps. Force India ran Adrian Sutil and test driver Vitantonio Liuzzi, and Williams allowed Nico Hulkenberg out in a 2009-spec. FW30. Hulkenberg caused a red flag when he stopped on track, similarly to Robert Kubica who suffered minor problems, resulting in a third red flag of the day.
|1.||Takuma Sato Scuderia Toro Rosso||1m20.763s||121 Laps|
|2.||Sebastien Buemi Scuderia Toro Rosso||1m21.071s||117 Laps|
|3.||Alex Wurz Honda||1m21.198s||77 Laps|
|4.||Pedro De La Rosa McLaren||1m21.417s||65 Laps|
|5.||Gary Paffett McLaren||1m22.235s||47 Laps|
|6.||Robert Kubica BMW||1m22.341s||56 Laps|
|7.||Sebastien Loeb Red Bull Racing||1m22.503s||82 Laps|
|8.||Nelson Piquet Jr. Renault||1m22.560s||80 Laps|
|9.||Christian Klien BMW||1m22.883s||53 Laps|
|10.||Nico Hulkenberg Williams||1m23.467s||116 Laps|
|11.||Luca Badoer Ferrari||1m23.515s||108 Laps|
|12.||Vitantonio Liuzzi Force India||1m23.794s||86 Laps|
|13.||Adrian Sutil Force India||1m23.832s||88 Laps|
|14.||Bruno Senna Honda||1m24.342s||39 Laps|
|15.||Marc Gene Ferrari||1m24.521s||33 Laps|
|16.||Giedo Van Der Garde Renault||1m24.908s||27 Laps|
|17.||Lucas Di Grassi Honda||1m25.512s||48 Laps|