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Barcelona Test Day Three: Button Tops, Hamilton Bottoms

Barcelona Test Day Three: Button Tops, Hamilton Bottoms

The third day of testing wrapped up earlier with Jenson Button topping the timing sheet in the new Brawn GP car, the Briton lapping Circuit de Catalunya a full second faster than nearest rival Felipe Massa in the Ferrari. It wasn’t all smiles in Spain though as Lewis Hamilton ended the day at the bottom of the list, his McLaren having to be recovered from the wall after an off at Turn 2. The front of the MP4-24 suffered damage as the left side of the wing hit the barrier.

McLaren have offered an explanation for the apparent lack of pace though, Ron Dennis stating that the squad are leaving it as late as possible before using their Australian Grand Prix aero package. This has led to other challenges, but the former team boss is confident his car will be among the fastest at the end of the month.

We had a strategy for this year to leave it to the last possible moment to produce our aerodynamic package for the Australian Grand Prix.

That in itself gave us some production challenges and we have really only started to run the car in the last day with the Australian aero package. Ron Dennis.

The day however was all about the surprising form of the BGP 001, although Ross Brawn himself said it was expected after the hard work that had gone into the car back at the Brackley factory. It is likely that Button was on a low fuel load to have produced a time so far ahead of the others, but the car hasn’t looked too bad in the previous two days of testing.

It’s been another great day and a very positive test generally. After the challenges we have faced, to come here and get off to such an encouraging start is just what we all needed and I can’t thank the team enough. All that effort has really paid off and everyone can feel very proud. Jenson Button.

Elsewhere on the timing sheet, the usual suspects continued to show their form, with Robert Kubica driving well for BMW, and Timo Glock ensuring his Toyota TF109 remained in the mix. Fernando Alonso took to the track in the new Renault R29 and managed a fifth fastest lap. Sebastian Vettel was piloting the Red Bull RB5 while Sebastien Buemi took the controls of the Scuderia Toro Rosso. In an effort to make up for the lost time from yesterday, Buemi was the busiest man of the day today, completing 140 laps on his way to ninth.

The laps times set all seem fairly close, once again indicating that the field could be tightly packed this year. Aside from Button’s fastest lap, the spread from Massa to Hamilton is only 1.5s.

Barcelona Test
Day Three Results Table

Lap Time
Fastest Time Set

Laps Set
Number Laps Set

1. British FlagJenson Button Brawn GP 1m19.127s 124 Laps
2. Brazilian FlagFelipe Massa Ferrari 1m20.168s 109 Laps
3. Polish FlagRobert Kubica BMW 1m20.217s 109 Laps
4. German FlagTimo Glock Toyota 1m20.410s 99 Laps
5. Spanish FlagFernando Alonso Renault 1m20.863s 107 Laps
6. German FlagSebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing 1m21.165s 102 Laps
7. German FlagNico Rosberg Williams 1m21.324s 89 Laps
8. Italian FlagGiancarlo Fisichella Force India 1m21.545s 97 Laps
9. Swiss FlagSebastien Buemi Scuderia Toro Rosso 1m21.569s 140 Laps
10. British FlagLewis Hamilton McLaren 1m21.657s 82 Laps

Oliver White

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  • […] The sidepods appear to be slightly smaller than what we saw on the F60, but in comparison to others that have since launched, Ferrari are still not quite as efficient in the cooling department. Smaller, tighter air-intakes imply a car that is working well with its cooling, and McLaren are perhaps among the best at achieving this. Aside from this though, it is clear the F10 is an evolution of the F60 and was not designed from scratch. This usually means a steady improvement in performance and suggests that the F60 was running well towards the end of the 2009 season. And looking at Kimi Raikkonen’s results from last year, most of his haul were collected in the latter half, adding weight to the theory that the F10 should run well this year. The only possible fly in the ointment is if a team takes the other approach – a clean-slate design – and gets it spot on from the word go. But then, how often does that happen…? […]

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