The Mercedes AMG PETRONAS F1 Team’s Valtteri Bottas was the fastest driver on day 3 of the opening winter test at the Barcelona Circuit Du Catalunya in Spain on Wednesday. The Finn set completed 75 laps with a fastest time of 01:19.705s and speaking following the day of action he commented by saying:
I think it was another good session. We completed lots of mileage and the entire programme that we’d planned to do – including some long and short runs, collecting information on the different tyre compounds.
We did some aero work to start with in the morning when the conditions were cold, then moved onto testing different settings on the car. It was a pretty straightforward day again, so I think everyone has done a great job so far. The car is running well and it’s feeling better and better.
It was definitely easier today without the windy conditions and I was able to experience the new car a bit more. One more day of testing left this week, with the wet running on Thursday, so I’m looking forward to getting more laps in tomorrow.
Lewis Hamilton completed 95 laps with the seventh fastest time with a 01:22.090s and speaking following the session he commented by saying:
It’s been a great test so far for the team. Everyone at the factory has worked so hard to build a car that goes the distance. As always on these test days we’re trying to get through as much as possible, in terms of reliability.
The main thing is I got my first race run done today with no problems at all. Everything’s worked well, which I’m happy about. The car is running smoothly and we’re just running through setup items to tick off boxes at this stage.
This is testing, so on the first week you never chase times. When you bring out a new car you don’t have all of the components to be able to switch and make changes and work through everything you want to do – that’s something that filters through over the days. Next week we should have a better opportunity to dial in the car, but for now we’re focusing on mileage.
Valtteri is doing a great job so far. His feedback seems solid, he’s working great with the team and transitioning in smoothly.
Pirelli will conduct a wet weather test on Thursday’s final day of the opening test.