Sahara Force India Formula One Team’s new driver Esteban Ocon got his first opportunity to drive the new 2017 VJM10 on day 2 of winter testing at the Barcelona Circuit Du Catalunya in Montmelo, Spain.
Ocon completed 86 laps and set the fifth fastest time of the day with a 01:22.509s and speaking following the day of action he commented by saying:
A very enjoyable first day in the VJM10. It’s very early days, of course, but the initial feelings are positive and we found a good direction for setting up the car. The only issue was an oil leak just before lunch, but it didn’t cost us much track time and I’m satisfied with the number of laps we covered. I hope we will make similar progress tomorrow and the day after. This was my first experience of the new generation cars and I have to say they are proper beasts: the high-speed corners are very impressive and there are big gains in the low-speed corners so it’s a good step forward.
Force India’s test and reserve driver Alfonso Celis will be in the car on Wednesday and speaking about Tuesday’s running, Chief Race Engineer Tom McCullough commented by saying:
It was a much smoother day than yesterday with good reliability allowing us to cover 86 laps with Esteban. We finished off the systems checks this morning as Esteban became comfortable with the new car and then moved straight into the aero programme, which we had started yesterday with Sergio. Esteban’s feedback led us in a good direction with rebalancing the car and he also ran on a variety of tyre compounds including supersoft, soft and medium. I’m pleased we managed to exceed our target lap count and accrued so much data because the learning curve is so steep in these early days. We will continue the programme tomorrow with Alfonso Celis in the VJM10.