Raikkonen leads Di Resta on first day of Jerez test

2012 F1 season

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Kimi Raikkonen, Lotus, Jerez, 2012
Kimi Raikkonen was quickest on his return to F1

Kimi Raikkonen got his F1 comeback off to a positive start as he set the quickest time in testing at Jerez.

Raikkonen ran a series of rapid laps in the morning culminating in a 1’19.670 which put the Lotus E20 at the top of the times.

Paul di Resta came closed to deposing him with a best effort just a tenth of a second slower in the new Force India.

As always, the headlines times should not be taken as a simple reflection of who’s quickest and who’s slowest. For example, HRT (running last year’s car) were only 5% slower than the fastest time, well below the 7-8% range typically seen in last year’s races.

With nine new cars in action on the first day of the test some teams had comparatively quiet days.

Mark Webber got the year off to a slow start for defending champions Red Bull. He was unable to run during the first few hours of the session as fog at the track delayed the arrival of parts for the new RB8.

Heikki Kovalainen logged 28 laps in the new Caterham CT01 but his day’s running came to an end when the car’s starter developed a fault.

Another driver whose test ended early was Daniel Ricciardo. A drop in oil pressure on his Toro Rosso STR7 caused him to pull over with just over half hour remaining, causing the first red flag of the day.

“We had a very productive morning, doing over 40 laps and we made good progress with our programme,” said Ricciardo.

“Then in the afternoon, we did a couple of longer runs, but had to cut it short, although we only lost an hour. I was using the medium tyre on that last run, having used hard tyres for the rest of the day.”

Meanwhile Kamui Kobayashi, who had shaken down the Sauber C31 yesterday, did over 100 laps in the new car today. But he hit trouble with less than half an hour left in the session, bringing the red flags out a second time.

A brief restart gave Pedro de la Rosa time to post the final improvement of the day in last year’s HRT, before the chequered flag brought the first official test day of 2012 to an end.

Jerez test times

DriverCarBest timeLapsDifference
1Kimi RaikkonenLotus-Renault E201’19.67075
2Paul di RestaForce India-Mercedes VJM051’19.7721010.102
3Nico RosbergMercedes W021’20.219560.549
4Mark WebberRed Bull-Renault RB81’20.496530.826
5Daniel RicciardoToro Rosso-Ferrari STR71’20.694571.024
6Michael SchumacherMercedes W021’20.794421.124
7Kamui KobayashiSauber-Ferrari C311’21.3531051.683
8Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes MP4-271’21.530621.860
9Felipe MassaFerrari F20121’22.815693.145
10Heikki KovalainenCaterham-Renault CT011’23.178283.508
11Pastor MaldonadoWilliams-Renault FW341’23.371253.701
12Pedro de la RosaHRT-Cosworth F1111’23.676444.006

2012 F1 season

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Image ?? Force India F1 Team

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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119 comments on “Raikkonen leads Di Resta on first day of Jerez test”

  1. This is definitive proof! Kimi will win the WDC this year!

    1. @mpw1985 I can’t tell if you’re being serious or not…

      1. Obviously he is serious. Who would doubt these times?

      2. kenneth Ntulume
        7th February 2012, 16:15

        He is serious

      3. @Keith Collantine
        I’m just kidding. Playing the role of over-enthusiastic fan jumping to conclusions. Also being a bit of a troll, so I apologize for that

        1. @mpw1985 The problem is people won’t necessarily get it (as you can already see).

          1. I thought both egsgeg and kenneth were being sarcastic :P

        2. You needed to put a smiley face on there. Like this one>>> ;-) . Then they’d know you weren’t being serious. :P

          1. I find it really amusing and ironic that ppl are being so serious about being sarcastic ;-)

          2. Hey! Sarcasm is serious business ;-)

    2. Steady! It’s only day one of testing.

    3. It only first day of testing.

    4. I agree! I already bet £5000 on it! the times are proof alone!

      1. ^ this guy gets it

        1. thanks. hehe

      2. Did you do that when Brawn turned up to their first testing session in 2009?

        1. I was going to put £10 on Button after the first test. The odds stayed at 100/1 until mid way into the 1st test- I massively regret not getting off my ****.

          1. Me too…very, very annoyed…not so much as my then gf when I told her!!

    5. Kimi’s just going to smash all the records, in the same way Barrichello would’ve done it last year if testing meant anything at all…

      1. But Williams did smash the records. Only not the ones they where hoping.

        1. @keithcollantine

          seeing as we are all f1 fanatics and therefore of course know that times set in testing mean sweet FA, perhaps it would be good if you could break from the normal journalist angle of who set the fastest time and lead with an angle that does actually mean something

          perhaps todays angle could have been the incredible out-of-the-box reliability had by all with just the 2 red flags

          that would maybe negate all of the above

      2. At least we have some entertainment form someone. Pointless mentioning sandbaging Red Bull, actually looking at their times you can start droving some conclusions. They are very consistent on that over last 3 years…

    6. Just like Sauber and Renault and Ferrari did 2011.

    7. Testing doesn’t prove anything special although you have circling around test track for 100 laps and beyond. The most important is consistency, reliability and determination.

  2. i have put 100 pounds bet on kimi to win WDC the moment i saw the result launching video.i hope not to be disapointed

    1. result launching video?

    2. @spiderman What are the odds at the moment by the way?

    3. You took one look at a 60% year old car and put £100 down? I hope your day job is not bank manager. :P

  3. It will be interesting to hear as testing goes on who’s feeling confident and who is not. Will any team have a woeful pre season like McLaren did last year?

    1. McLaren perhaps!

      1. actually they had pretty consistent runs!….even though they hadn´t done too many laps, hence i could imagine, that tomorrow is gonna be all about mileage….

        1. They never do high mileage, normally Ferrari the most and Mclaren the least.
          RBR don’t seem to run lots of laps either if I remember correctly.
          I’m sure there was an article on here about it, irrespective of Mclarens problems in testing last year they tend not to run 100s of laps, the ran very few in 2010 as well.

  4. Couldn’t be more happier. :)

  5. Right, I know it’s the first day of pre-season testing and everything. but HRT have improved, saying that they used the F111 which may have used the blowing diffuser. Lotus and FI are looking very strong ahead of next season. Williams, second bottom :/

    1. I doubt either Mercedes or HRT ran with the exhaust blowing the diffuser off throttle. Would be a bit of a waste of time when they could be analysing the effects of running closer to 2012 spec.

      1. the-muffin-man
        7th February 2012, 16:59

        The only blowing of the diffuser HRT did last season was with the hair dryers they use to cool the brakes!!

        1. COTD surely ;-)

        2. They used one in Canada, whether it was fitted beyond then is another matter.

    2. @cstonehouse HRT are using the exact car they finished the season with, it hasn’t magically improved.

      Remember that it is only testing and each team is running different programs to evaluate setups, tyres, new parts etc. The times, from a fans point of view at least, really mean very little. For example, do you think that the Force India is really faster than last season’s Mercedes? Given that we’ve lost the blown diffuser and, therefore, an awful lot of downforce.

    3. Seeing as the F111 already has a very low nose could it meet the 2012 regulations as it is?

      If so I cannot see HRT coming up with a major re-design for the F112…

    4. “Lotus and FI are looking very strong ahead of next season”

      Not really, Williams topped the Jerez test last year and look at their 2011 season.

    5. I do believe that’s Coventry transport Museum in your avatar there!

  6. Hopefully Raikkonen didn’t go fastest because of a glory run, but time will tell.

    1. my name isn’t time but i can tell you they did. It’s not kimis fault. The team is looking for a new owner and once the season starts proper unless they are at least on the podium favourable news headlines will dry up along with multi hundred million dollar contracts. make hay as the something something as the saying goes :P

  7. Interesting that the starter motor caused the Caterham to stop. That’s a new part this year isn’t it – previously they haven’t had a starter on the cars and have used external starter motors.

    1. I believe it was the starter shaft, i.e. the thing they plug the external starter into

    2. I think you’re thinking of the 2014 engine regulations when they will effectively need a ‘starter’ although this will be done by the ERS system.

      I assume the current rules don’t allow KERS to restart a stalled engine?

      1. As far as I’m aware there’s no rule saying they can’t start using their own power, but to save weight they all choose not to.

    3. Isn’t it ironic?

  8. Anyone else notice how the nose on the Lotus is completely different to the one they launched the car with?

    Its lower & narrower with thinner support struts. Doesn’t look as good as the launch nose.

    Also the gold has become beige again :(

    1. The launch car was the R31 chassis with updated nose. It was a bogus car.

      This is the actual E20 chassis

    2. It’s not beige, it’s JPS Lotus gold! Looks far better and more like the Lotuses of the 70s/80s than that shade of dull, brown-y gold they had on the car at launch. That looked more like a Wolf.

  9. There are some videos, like this one

      1. F1 is back!!! :D Glad there is no horrible EBD noise this year.

        1. OmarR-Pepper (@)
          8th February 2012, 14:35

          no horrible noise… lot of horrible noses

      2. awesome find. thanks :)

      3. Nice! The noise is great, thanks for that!

      4. That sounds a million times better than last year. Especially the Renault/Lotus, that was absolutely awful.

    1. Some other videos here:


      Cars sound a lot better without the EBD’s.

  10. I’m not surprised Kimi was first, in fact I was almost expecting it – too good an oppurtunity for publicity! Their car livery is stunning, almost makes up for their step nose.

    1. THIS!!! it was a pretty good PR stunt…. but i am sure that tomorrows timesheet is gonna look quite different than today´s…

      1. Totally agree, all PR

  11. fact is HRT will benefit most for banning blown diffuser!! hence they will be a lot closer to teams ahead than in previous seasons.

    1. is that a camera on the right hand side of the rear wing?

      1. Temperature sensor to monitor the temps of the rear bodywork by the exhaust exits.

    2. I don’t understand why Ferrari are running with exhausts like that when they will surely have to change them significantly before the season starts.

      1. Especially when they’re burning the bodywork and they’re having to do this > http://twitpic.com/8gylqs

  12. It’s a good sign that Ferrari are so down the list! They were fastest in 2010 and sometimes in 2011, and they were the third fastest during the season!

    1. So how is that a good sign?

      1. just being superstitious… :)

    2. I’ve lost a lot of faith in judging how competitive ferrari are since the last two winter tests…they were favourites for the title after 2010 and were supposed to be neck and neck for pace with the Red Bulls after last years tests!

      All I hope for is that it doesn’t become apparent that Ferrari have a dog of a car!

  13. I am a little confused. I appreciate the testing today doesn’t really help us with how quick the cars are relative to each other.

    Isn’t KR performance today pretty cool considering he has been away for so long? Just asking?

    1. Not really any sign at all. Most of the teams try to run at specific speeds for particular fuel loads in order to verify simulator results and to get constant good measurements. The lower teams or teams that need sponsorship tend to throw in fast laps which are not particularly useful at this stage of testing.

      1. That’s not even the reason Kimi is so high. The reason is simple. The guy was missing from F1 for a while so he wanted to push a little to get a feeling so he did a slightly faster lap than most. Other drivers don’t really push their cars in testing because no one wants to show anything to the other about the real pace of the car.
        Especially the first day they don’t even push for a few corners so Kimi pushing even a little just to get a feeling got on top easily.

  14. The 5% difference (instead of 7-8%) might be because cars will be slower this year than last and HRT is still using the old chassis.

    1. 2012 cars are not looking any slower than last year ones, I would say faster..

  15. Expected Sauber to be right up the time sheets,They’re renowned for running their car on low-fuel (2010 & 2011)

  16. Are the teams only allowed to run one car in testing or why don’t the run two ?

    1. One car.

    2. Rosberg and Schumacher.

      1. Drove one car between them whats your point? :P

  17. sid_prasher (@)
    7th February 2012, 18:04

    Wow the new season has started already!! Really happy to see Kimi’s time…even though it is just practice.

    Not a great start by Ferrari…in their ugliest car that I have seen since the early 90s.

    1. To be fair, having the number on the “step” does soften the blow of the car design a little bit.

  18. Times only really matter when we get to Australian qualifying, but at least Kimi himself is driving with confidence.

    1. Actually – no matter how it was achieved – it builds the confidence of the entire team. That’s not to be underestimated and it certainly has real value.

      Besides – just look at all the headlines: “Raikkonen fastesr”! :-)

      1. are you sure it wasn’t

        massa, ‘kimi is faster’ than you?

        1. We alrerady know that Massa is faster than Kimi, until the 2009 accident at least. !!! :)

      2. I’m sure those within the team who know exactly what way the car was set up (race pace, qualifying trim etc.) will look at the time and get what they want out of it, but as always it’s hard for us on the outside to know if that was a full-on belter of a lap or something that’ll be a mere footnote should everybody else be doing the same pace tomorrow.

  19. Stephen Higgins
    7th February 2012, 19:14

    Looking at all these step-noses makes me almost pine with nostalgia for the 2004 Williams …..

  20. What compound tires were used for the fastest laps?

    1. Lotus was on medium, merc on soft force india not sure but looking on the pics they ware medium too

  21. So first that revolting nose and now an upside-down cross on top. That F2012 really is Satan spawn, isn’t it? Can’t imagine Italians being too happy about that.

    1. It really looks heavy in comparison to Lotus or FI. There is so many features on its body that reminds me of my xmas tree :)

      1. Matt, it’s February 7th. You need to get rid of your xmas tree!

    2. The “cross” is there for testing only to gather data on what the air above the car is doing (or to be more precise, what the car is doing to the air around it).

      The ski ramp is here to stay though.

  22. Did any of the teams or drivers comment on the new tyres? I couldn’t see any which hopefully is a good sign!

    1. Lotus and Maclaren do not expect them to be much different to last year ones. I read that pirelli’s aim was to significantly reduce marbles and make them a little more durable that they lifespan would reach aprox 100 km ~ 60 miles

      1. Less marbles would be good. I was at Melbourne for the first race last year and i’ve never seen so much marbles off the racing line.

        1. True, it really looks horrible and makes overtaking much harder

    2. I read Schumacher called them ‘‘comfortable to drive’

  23. Is there somewhere the 10 fastest laps for each driver are published? That would be a little more helpful than just their single fastest lap.

  24. I hope Lotus has plenty of ice creams in the freezer for Kimi!

    1. Or they could make a car that doesn’t break down every race, so Raikkonen wouldn’t need to be in the garage …

  25. Testing is testing, I won’t bother about the time sheets.

    Come Australia, that’s when the real thing begins.

    But it’s really great to see Iceman topping the sheets though.

  26. Too soon to tell of course, but it sure would be fun to see the lovely Lotus mixing it up at the head of the field this year!

  27. So looking at the times, Kimi did a 1:20 something on his first lap?

    I know times don’t mean anything in practice but that is very impressive, does he know the track better than the others?

  28. I Think Jenson was 8th because They mistakenly choosed the wrong setup so Jenson is 8th fastest,Maybe and 2nd day testing he will be faster

  29. Hmm Jenson is 8th fastest,I Think they choosed the wrong aerodynamic Setup

    1. What makes you think that?

  30. I have a question, what implications do gearbox and engine use have on a teams season allocation? I’m guessing none, but is there some way that the FIA restrict usage?

  31. OmarR-Pepper (@)
    8th February 2012, 14:33

    Hey Keith you should call Prisoner Monkeys to see if he is still alive… so weird there aren’t any of his comments about this news when usually this blog looks like “PMFanatic.co.uk”

Comments are closed.