Sergio Pérez has taken McLaren to the top of the testing timesheets on the second day of pre-season testing at the Circuit de Catalunya.
The Mexican produced a personal best effort to beat Sebastian Vettel – who suffered more dramas – to top spot, while Day 1 pacesetter Kimi Räikkönen was third-fastest.
Conditions at the Montmeló circuit were once again chilly when the track opened for business at 09:00AM local time. This time, however, conditions were much improved on Tuesday, and this gave the field more optimum conditions to perform longer runs and to start simulating race conditions.
Pérez’s session-topping effort came shortly before the lunch break, courtesy of a one-lap qualifying-style flier on the soft Pirelli tyre compounds. This moved him ahead of the morning’s pacesetter Vettel, and the two remained 1-2 on the timesheets for the rest of the day.
As was the case on Tuesday, both Vettel and Räikkönen had more mechanical issues. Räikkönen’s was by the more serious, with the Finn hit with a gearbox fault just four laps into his first run, which confined him to the pit lane until the final two hours of the day.
Vettel suffered one of two stoppages, with the latter coming shortly after a pit stop simulation, forcing him to pull over at pit exit when one of his wheels tried to part company with his RB9.
Fourth-fastest and with by far the greatest mileage for the day was Lewis Hamilton, who took his Mercedes F1W04 for 121 laps with his fastest lap coming on the hard Pirelli rubber.
Local hero Fernando Alonso was again in action in the Ferrari F138 and finished the day fifth-fastest. The Spaniard finished over 1.3 seconds adrift, but with teams running completely different programs, it’s difficult to read too much into the pecking order this early on.
Veltteri Bottas had his first outing in the new Williams FW35 and finished sixth-quickest. The Finnish rookie ran a ‘stepped nose’ configuration on his car, with the team running back-to-back comparisons as it tries to figure out which configuration to run at the Australian Grand Prix next month.
Daniel Ricciardo and Paul di Resta completed their test duties in this four-day test session for Toro Rosso and Force India respectively. Both managed marginal improvements on their Tuesday times, and will spend Thursday and Friday watching proceedings from pit wall. They finished just ahead of Sauber’s Nico Hülkenberg.
The usual suspects – Marussia and Caterham – occupied the lower reaches of the timesheets once again, with Max Chilton again proving quicker than Charles Pic. Chilton triggered the day’s second red flag with a dry fuel simulation.
The third day of testing continues on Thursday at the Circuit de Catalunya from 09:00AM local time (GMT +1).
2013 Barcelona Pre-Season Test – Day 2 Session Times:
|1.||Sergio Pérez||McLaren Mercedes MP4-28||1:21.848||97||S|
|2.||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull Racing Renault RB9||+ 0.349||84||S|
|3.||Kimi Räikkönen||Lotus F1 Renault E21||+ 0.849||43||M|
|4.||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes AMG F1W04||+ 0.878||121||H|
|5.||Fernando Alonso||Scuderia Ferrari F138||+ 1.399||76||M|
|6.||Valtteri Bottas||Williams Renault FW35||+ 1.713||98||S|
|7.||Daniel Ricciardo||Scuderia Toro Rosso Ferrari STR8||+ 1.870||70||M|
|8.||Paul di Resta||Force India Mercedes VJM06||+ 2.123||62||M|
|9.||Nico Hülkenberg||Sauber Ferrari C32||+ 2.357||88||M|
|10.||Max Chilton||Marussia Racing Cosworth MR02||+ 3.267||67||S|
|11.||Charles Pic||Caterham Renault CT03||+ 4.395||102||M|