Romain Grosjean has moved to the top of the timesheets on the second day of Formula 1 pre-season testing at the Jerez circuit. The Lotus driver clocked a 1:18.218 to move ahead of Tuesday pace-setter Jenson Button as the fastest overall driver over the two days of running to-date.
While the testing times are largely meaningless so early into the pre-season, the big news of the day was the early accident that befell Lewis Hamilton, who speared into the tyre barriers at Turn 6 when his Mercedes had a sudden loss of rear brake pressure.
Coupled with team-mate Nico Rosberg’s early bath the day before – courtesy of an electrical fire – the silver speedster has completed barely 30 laps over the first two days of pre-season running.
Up at the front of the order, Grosjean set about posting some quick-fire times in the Lotus E21. He moved to the top of the timesheets early in the day was never displaced as he set about improving on his fastest lap time as the day wore on. His fastest lap was over six-tenths of a second faster than the time Button had managed the day before.
Some three-quarters of a second adrift in second place on the timing screens was Paul di Resta in the Force India VHM06, while Daniel Ricciardo was third-fastest in the Toro Rosso STR8.
Mark Webber put his head down to complete the most mileage of any runner en route to fourth place overall. The Australian hands over the controls to team-mate Sebastian Vettel, who has his first outing in the RB9 for the remaining two days’ action at Jerez.
Webber narrowly outpaced the next trio of drivers, who included Sauber driver Nico Hülkenberg and the sidelined Hamilton, while McLaren’s Sergio Pérez had his first outing in the McLaren MP4-28 and was seventh-quickest. Sporting a revised helmet scheme, the Mexican concentrated on a series of medium-length stints in the Mercedes-powered car.
Ferrari concentrated on running various exhaust configurations on its F138, leaving Felipe Massa eighth-fastest after 78 laps and just under 1.7 seconds off Grosjean’s leading pace.
Pastor Maldonado was ninth-fastest in the older-spec Williams as he continued to support the team completing tyre and component evaluations as the team gears up towards finalising its 2013 design.
Force India’s occasional test driver, James Rossiter, made a late appearance in the VJM06 to familiarise himself with the car before he carries out a lengthier outing in the car on Thursday to evaluate the team’s simulator version of the VJM06 against the real-life version.
Once again, Caterham and Marussia brought up the rear, with Giedo van der Garde clocking 88 laps to post a best effort a little over three seconds off the pace in the CT01.
Fellow F1 rookie Luiz Razia had his first go behind the wheel of the Marussia MR02, but the new car’s teething problems continued when his day’s running was cut short by an engine failure.
The testing action continues on Thursday.
2013 Jerez Pre-Season Test – Day 2 Session Times:
|1.||Romain Grosjean||Lotus F1 Renault E21||1:18.218||95|
|2.||Paul di Resta||Force India Mercedes VJM06||1:19.003||+ 0.785||95|
|3.||Daniel Ricciardo||Scuderia Toro Rosso Ferrari STR8||1:19.134||+ 0.916||83|
|4.||Mark Webber||Red Bull Racing Renault RB9||1:19.338||+ 1.120||101|
|5.||Nico Hülkenberg||Sauber Ferrari C32||1:19.502||+ 1.284||99|
|6.||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes AMG F1W04||1:19.519||+ 1.301||15|
|7.||Sergio Pérez||McLaren Mercedes MP4-28||1:19.572||+ 1.354||81|
|8.||Felipe Massa||Scuderia Ferrari F138||1:19.914||+ 1.696||78|
|9.||Pastor Maldonado||Williams Renault FW34||1:20.693||+ 2.475||71|
|10.||James Rossiter||Force India Mercedes VJM06||1:21.273||+ 3.055||19|
|11.||Giedo van der Garde||Caterham Renault CT01||1:21.311||+ 3.093||88|
|12.||Luiz Razia||Marussia Racing Cosworth MR02||1:23.537||+ 5.319||31|