Vettel keeps Red Bull on top in Barcelona

2011 F1 testing

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Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Barcelona, 2011

Sebastian Vettel continued where team mate Mark Webber left off yesterday by setting the fastest time for Red Bull.

The world champion set a 1’21.865 within the first hour of the test and the time wasn’t beaten all day.

Sebastien Buemi was second fastest for Toro Rosso.

But his STR6 stopped shortly after Buemi did his best time. The team did a series of practice pit stops in the afternoon.

McLaren driver Lewis Hamilton spent much of the day towards the bottom of the times sheets but moved up to fourth behind Vitaly Petrov later on.

Felipe Massa was fifth-quickest for Ferrari.

Williams had more problems with their Kinetic Energy Recovery System which caused Pastor Maldonado to stop early on. The team removed the system before continuing with the test.

Among the other drivers to hit trouble with Paul di Resta, Sebastien Buemi and Jerome d’Ambrosio, all of which caused stoppages during the day.

D’Ambrosio’s Virgin had an electrical fault and Force India said the failure on di Resta’s car was “minor”.

For the second day running, the red flag ame out in the dying minutes of the test following a late stoppage. This time it was Petrov in the Renault whose car came to a halt on the track.

Driver Car Best time Laps Difference
1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault RB7 1’21.865 112
2 Sebastien Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari STR6 1’22.396 120 0.531
3 Vitaly Petrov Renault R31 1’22.670 116 0.805
4 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes MP4-26 1’22.888 57 1.023
5 Felipe Massa Ferrari 150?�?? Italia 1’23.324 101 1.459
6 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes VJM04 1’24.334 118 2.469
7 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari C30 1’24.436 107 2.571
8 Nico Rosberg Mercedes W02 1’25.807 100 3.942
9 Jarno Trulli Lotus-Renault T128 1’26.090 98 4.225
10 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Cosworth FW33 1’26.989 29 5.124
11 Jerome d’Ambrosio Virgin-Cosworth MVR-02 1’28.982 64 7.117

2011 F1 testing

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    82 comments on “Vettel keeps Red Bull on top in Barcelona”

    1. Mclaren struggling again, the spanish gran prix distance is 66 laps and today Lewis only completed 57. Although he was supposed to get his last lap into the low 1’21s but the red flag came out

      1. Andrew Hyatt
        9th March 2011, 16:18

        Ell..what gave you the impression Lewis was going to get into the 1’21s? I hope it wasn’t my comment on the F1fantic live :-)

        1. unfortunately, it was!

      2. His longer stint was 13 laps long, and by the end they tried to at least set a fast time and only achieved 1 second slower than the time setted 3 hour earlier by RBR…. And 6 teams setted their times in the last half hour…

        Not looking good at all

        1. If they have the third fastest car, are you guys going to call it a dog again?

          1. A car that is a few tenths slower than the fastest car cannot be classed as a “dog”.

            If you have a 2010 HRT, then you have a “dog”.

            1. It’s a “dog” in terms of where Mclaren and the fans want it to be. It’s verrrrryyyy frustrating that it is like this, even though theoretically it’s still only testing.

    2. not many laps for McLaren…. getting more worried by the day

      1. Nigelstash (@)
        9th March 2011, 23:55

        It does look as if Red Bull are way in front, but how many teams got into the 1.22s today? Lots of people are saying McLaren are trailing the Bulls and Ferraris, but it doesn’t look like that when you see Massa’s times, it just looks like Red Bull are ahead of a pack that are all pretty close (Mclaren, Ferrari, Renault). McLaren are clearly being disciplined in their testing strategy but both drivers have put in decent laps over the past 2 days.

      2. The testing mileage is really starting to make me have kittens. Something doesn’t seem quite right. They may be on a different testing program but since you are not allowed to test after this every lap you drive is important. However as always we will find out where everybody stands when we get to Melbourne.

    3. mclarens major problem is designer swapping every year. do red bull do that? no. mclaren should stick with one designer

      1. yeah but when you have newey as your designer why would you haha

      2. That problem has been resolved…of course it’s too late to help with the current car but hopefully some consistency will be achieved from now on.

        1. Yeah, but by then Lewis will have gone elsewhere by all accounts.

          1. To NASCAR, or maybe back to karting. Or home. Or Highgate.

    4. such poor performance from Mercedes… at least today :(… really hope that they were just covering miles an the car is much much faster… really hope they have great upgrade package :)

      1. Ross was sandbagging by saying that they are just 1 sec off the pace.. it seems like they are a whole lot more off the pace.

        1. Not with Schumi in the driving seat;) Lewis is joining Merc GP after MSC retires in 2012..LOL

    5. d’Ambrosia’s times in the Virgin seem to have been very off the pace, and not just today. Hope Virgin really aren’t that slow compared to the others.

      1. They did have a long standstill today, so maybe that contributed.

      2. they miss Glock for the car set up. Only last years HRT’s performance curve made me realise how important experience is, probably even more so when you have a substandard car.

        It’s nice that Jerommeke gains experience but I think that even he would rather have Timo also driving in this test. It would tell the team if it’s the driver or the car where the problems are…

    6. Marcel Fonseca
      9th March 2011, 16:19

      McLaren is kinda screwed I guess…

    7. I think the best hope for McLaren is, the mid grid teams are still encountering a lot of smaller issues with their KERS systems.
      That way they will have a reasonable chance of getting into the points :-(

      1. Now Lewis can experience what its like to drive a slow car for the first time :P

        1. …since 2009.

          1. His cars have been ‘slow’ since then?

            We ought to know by know that F1 cars are never created equal, and that it is that inequality that defines F1.

            Lewis is currently with an F1 team that can be fully expected to come up with a championship winning car. If it does not, then that’s the nature of the beast.

          2. F1 sucks.Top drivers like Lewis are crippled by uncompetitive cars.This is no racing. I would love all top drivers compete in evenly matched machines.

      2. ^^^ RAS Syndrome grrrrrrr ^^^

    8. 7 cars managed over 100 laps today!

      It will be interesting to hear some of the drivers comments.

      Some say McLaren have huge update coming tomorrow. Only heard some ‘maybes’ about that?

      1. So many updates for a new car. Sounds like it’s built by Microsoft ;)

        1. Lewis receives message: “We are sorry for this inconvenience, but your MP4-26 has encountered a problem and needs to shut down”.

          1. At least he got a message. Instead of needing to delve deep into some asci error logging files to find out why the thing wasn’t working …

    9. Maybe even better news, Pedro dl Rosa is joining as a test driver again (from McLaren pages). They need all development help they can get right now, a bit of Pirelli inside knowledge would come handy.

      1. They probably know more about the tyres than he does by now.

    10. Hope Lewis’s new manager doesn’t make him sign a 5 years contract with Mclaren. He really needs to get out of this Team as soon as posible if he wants to win another championship! Mclaren is starting to be a joke since Ron left, they even planning to wear stupid overall made by online fans this year.

      1. Is not that there are plenty seats more appealing than Mc laren nowadays, they might be struggling, but I don’t see him having a chance at Red Bull, Ferrari, or Reanult if Robert’s recovery is fast. Maybe at Mercedes if Michael quits after this season, but anyhow not much more competitive than Macca….

      2. Where will he go? Red Bull? Nah! They’ve got Vettel, and that Ricciardo chap sounds promising. Ferrari? Don’t even think about it Lewis!

      3. Nonsense, Ron hasn’t ‘left’ at all and the team is arguably the most desirable on the grid.

        1. In the long run you would want to be either there or at Ferrari, and there’s no way he’s getting in at Ferrari!

          1. He’s not good enough to be invited to drive for Ferrari.

            1. Agreed. He’s not a patch on Massa.

            2. And where do you get that info from Steve?

            3. Yeah it’s not like he finished above Alonso – reigning double world champion, in his rookie season, in the same car is it?


            4. Not same car after Hungary. Same livery maybe. And mark my words, Alonso there or not, Ferrari would never ever have it.

      4. I agree…It kind of sucks that there really arent any top seats available at the top teams. He is faster than Webber but I dont know that Red Bull would oust him.
        Merc has major issues, but who knows Brawn is a genius and Haug fancies Lewis so maybe.

      5. Mclaren is starting to be a joke since Ron left

        It was a much nastier joke when RD was the principal. Unfortunately he hasn’t left yet

        1. I’m with you NW Ferrari won’t ever have Hamilton while Alonso is there. They don’t want to have Alonso crying and blackmailing them like he did to Mclaren… just because Lewis is faster than him. Ferrari don’t like drama :-)

    11. I have to say, Toro Rosso starts to look promising despite being the Red Bull B Team

      1. STR, Sauber and Force India all impressed today out of the usual midfield lot.

      2. Maybe they are looking for sponsors?

        1. Sponsors are intelligent enough these days to get the facts about what’s happening in testing before they decide to throw money at a team.

    12. I agree that if Lewis wants more championships he needs to think about getting out of there to replace Webber in 2013.

      1. Lewis is better off where he is. He would be lost without McLaren.

        1. Well he’s quite clearly not better off now is he!

          1. You can’t keep ‘jumping ship’ every time it looks like your car is a bit off the pace.

            1. It hasnt been ‘on’ the pace for about 4 years. Hell, it was’nt even the best car during his championship winning year. I think by next year, if Mac dont get their act together and at least craft a machine ON PAR witht he front runners, he’d be gone.

            2. did senna moved to williams because they have “the car”?

      2. It has only been two seasons and 2011 hasn’t even’t started yet!

        It’s much too early to be thinking about leaving

    13. Thats something I never liked about Button, anyway, He`s faster than the Ferrari today.

        1. Sorry that was a bit brief, I meant Button was a jump shipper an Hamilton faster than the Ferrari today.

          1. Button jumped from Williams to BAR (a good move, eventually), and then from Brawn to McLaren (another good move, hopefully).

            I also don’t think that Hamilton will have been too overjoyed that he finished ahead of a Ferrari today.

            Not that it particularly matters in testing anyway.

            But it’s plain to see that neither McLaren driver are in the best team at the moment.

            1. But the Mclaren was faster than the Ferrari today?

            2. ferrari wasn’t looking for times, just go and watch the testing, the car was as fast as the red bull in the long run, they didn’t try fast laps.

    14. Lewis could easily get in any team if he decided to. Where would he go? Is it worth the risk?

      1. Hamilton has McLaren going through He`s veins, I would be speechless if He left Mclaren, Him and He`s Doll cant be far off from buying it :-)

    15. Who’s to say they will not get back to the top in the future?

    16. Where would he go? The Ferrari was probably the fastest car in 07 and 08. In 09 they had a dog of a car. F1 is all about change. There is massive changes coming in 2013. mclaren could end up with the car to beat for many years.

      1. The Ferrari may have been the fastest car in 07 and 08 because the team (that’s everyone, including the drivers) made it that way before it ever turned a wheel in anger.

        But tbh, there is little evidence (except for a few random statistics and some very dubious calculations) to suggest that it was the fastest car during those seasons.

    17. @ Gusto

      But the Mclaren was faster than the Ferrari today?

      It’s testing. Hamilton did that time with low fuel. Massa did his time during a run of several laps and never once did a qualifying run like Hamilton did. I have no doubt that the Ferrari would have also got into the 1m21s had Massa done a qualifying run, and I’m no fan of Ferrari!

      McLaren know that they are slower than Ferrari, Red Bull, and several other teams at this point.

      1. Thats the beauty of testing,you never know, but I fear you are correct and Mclaren have produced a lemon for the start of the seasson. But slightly off topic, I see a 12-15 lap sprint followed by a pit stop overtake being the recipe for the season…..not unlike NASCAR minus the SC…..wait a sec….

    18. Maybe it’s a good thing that mclaren hasn’t got the best car. F1 would be boring without Lewis blitzing through the field, let’s be honest no one can match him in that department

      1. Last season Lewis had a car that was just a couple of tenths off the pace, if that.

        It will not be so easy to see Lewis “blitzing through the field” if his car is no faster than the midfield runners.

      2. Don’t forget that Lewis “blitzing throuh the field” was aided by the F duct in many cases. He might be a good driver, but sometimes I feel he’s overrated. He is fast, being fast is not everything it takes to be an outstanding driver.

    19. Anyways how come my iPhone as changed back to the old layout where I cannot reply?

      1. It sometimes does that. I’ve got the same issue. Just click on exit mobile site and you’re back in the reply business

    20. Id struggle with yours :)

    21. Wow. Petrov’s really showing some great pace.

      1. Maybe. I try not to read too much into testing times, as we never know about tire compound, fuel load, etc. It’ll be fascinating to see where Renault actually ends up in the first few races. Torro Rosso as well. They look great, but so did Sauber this time last year.

    22. Mclaren duo were right,Torro Rosso have some pace? Seems like Red Bull have things under control along with Ferrari so where will the other big three teams be by the time Australia comes?

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