Ricciardo quickest on productive day for Red Bull

2015 F1 testing

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Daniel Ricciardo narrowly headed the times as F1 reached the halfway point in pre-season testing at the Circuit de Catalunya.

It was an encouraging day for Red Bull as the RB11, which failed to cover a grand prix distance on each of the previous five days of testing, covered more than two races’ worth of running on day six.

For the second day in a row Kimi Raikkonen was the second-fastest driver for Ferrari, albeit just a hundredth of a second off Ricciardo’s mark. Felipe Massa’s Williams also lapped within a tenth of a second of the Red Bull driver’s time.

Sergio Perez and Lewis Hamilton also set times which were quicker than yesterday’s fastest by Pastor Maldonado. Hamilton, who abandoned his test yesterday due to illness, took over from team mate Nico Rosberg at the wheel of the Mercedes halfway through today’s running.

Like Ricciardo, Hamilton completed a race simulation run. Between him and Rosberg, Mercedes clocked up 155 laps – more than any of their rivals.

Despite nursing a problem with their power unit, McLaren’s MP4-30 covered 59 laps in Fernando Alonso’s hands – seven short of a race distance at the Circuit de Catalunya, and ended the day seventh-quickest.

It was a less eventful test than yesterday, though Carlos Sainz Jnr caused one red flag after spinning his Toro Rosso at Campsa. Tomorrow may be quieter still, as rain is forecast to hit the circuit from mid-morning.

DriverCarBest timeLapsDifferenceTyres
1Daniel RicciardoRed Bull-Renault RB111’24.574143Soft
2Kimi RaikkonenFerrari SF15-T1’24.584900.010Soft
3Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes FW371’24.672880.098Soft
4Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes VJM071’24.7021210.128Super-soft
5Lewis HamiltonMercedes W061’24.923890.349Medium
6Nico RosbergMercedes W061’25.556660.982Medium
7Fernando AlonsoMcLaren-Honda MP4-301’25.961591.387Soft
8Jolyon PalmerLotus-Mercedes E231’26.280771.706Soft
9Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari C341’27.3341132.760Medium
10Carlos Sainz JnrToro Rosso-Renault STR101’28.9451004.371Medium

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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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41 comments on “Ricciardo quickest on productive day for Red Bull”

  1. Good to see McLaren posting some regular lap times and some decent mileage. Impressive race simulation from Hamilton too on Hard tyres.

    1. Very impressive on the race sims indeed! There’s lots of pace left in that Mercedes as well. Lewis’ quickest lap was set on the mediums late in the day on a three lap outing. He was up on his sector times as well before pitting. We still can’t be sure of any of the fuel loads, but 3/10ths off Ricciardo on the softs bodes well for the AMG lads.

      1. yesterday raikonnen did 1:25.1 on mediums, today hamilton 1:24.9 on mediums – that is only .2 difference, meaning nothing when we judge other factors. today raikonnen was slower on soft tyres- meaning they ran more fuel? – it shows it is too early to judge as we do not know fuel levels. merc is expeceted to be quick, so it is no surprise to anyone, but i feel ferrari and redbull are closer this year – they have no reason to do fast laps for no reason – if they are fast, then they are fast. how much closer they are to merc, or maybe faster, we will only know at the first race.

        1. Hamilton’s best time was set later in the afternoon on a much cooler track (cooler day in general as well), & as I said earlier, he was poised to go quicker & aborted the lap. It’s not an exact science by any means but no other team have shown any hints of having more in reserve than Mercedes has. Ultimate lap time aside, comparing the long runs were more representative, IMO: RIC’s 18 lap run vs HAM’s was very much a one sided affair, with Lewis much more consistent while being about a second a lap quicker on average (closer to 1.4 sec. best on best). Ferrari haven’t done race sims, & Merc hasn’t done performance runs. That’s what both teams are saying officially, & I’m sure most paying attention will concur that they’re running completely different programs. Again, not a sure thing, but while it appears that Ferrari have made a sizeable jump in performance (& probably will find even more come Melbourne), Mercedes have yet to turn a lap in anger, while RBR & Ferrari have. My money is on Merc still being in a class by themselves at the moment.

  2. 143 laps? That’s impressive.

    Ferrari still looks pretty good for now. I wonder where Mercedes really are.

    1. Logically considering the performance advantage they had last year, the fact that they have no shortage of resources or funding, and they’re a works team…they’re still somewhere off in the distance. Hopefully I’m wrong and we can see different teams challenge for wins this season.

    2. I’m just wondering why Ferrari aren’t doing race simulations. Kimi only has 2 days left in the car before Melbourne. Strange! Unless they really are chasing times.

      1. it is more about chasing performance, then chasing “times” – what good is it for a team to get headline grabbing times and then fail when it comes to real racing? to me it seems ferrari are chasing performance, and trying to learn about the maximum the car can give, and then they will improve it with a new aero kit for the 3rd test. they must feel confident the engine will last a whole race, so arent bothered at the moment to do a race simulation – maybe they will try it tomorrow, maybe at the 3rd test, or maybe only during the melbourne race! each team has their own program based on how they feel they can go forward.

    3. I am pretty sure most us know where Mercedes are, the question maybe most people would have is who is the closest to Merc. Today Lewis gave us a hint what’s in reserve, So be patient there is a lot to come from Mercedes.

      1. why are you so certain? raikonnen did a lap not far from hamilton yesterday (0.2 seconds) also on mediums – and today did laps on soft tyres with more fuel. why did you not comment yesterday that “most of us know where ferrari is” just wait till vettel gets in the ferrari, there is a lot more time to come from the ferrari too. if the power level is equated, there is no reason to see redbull and ferrari back in the game, the only difference last year was the power. the merc car this year isnt much more advanced then last year, so i think they actually have the least amount of development in the top 4 cars this year. this year will suprise many merc followers and will dissapoint i think that others are catching up.

    4. Mercedes look ominous as we’d expect. I expect nothing less than a pretty dominant season from them. As Nkoli says, most of us are just wondering what the order behind them is.

  3. In the press conference today the Ferrari top brass confirmed that they only talked to Vettel AFTER Alonso decided to leave. Some folks believed that Alonso was fired in favour of Vettel. So that should put that to bed!

    1. I don’t think any Ferrari big wig would be in their right mind to fire Alonso for a driver who got schooled by his not so highly rated teammate

      1. Alonso’s decision to quit Ferrari was the logical thing for him to do after how the last season panned out…he spent probably the best 5 years of his career in a second or third best car and even worse considering the 2014 Ferrari … He had to take a chance And he’s done so by moving to McLaren honda.. it was quite evident to me at least that Ferrari tried all they could to keep him … On the other hand I would have loved to see vettel staying with RB and having a sec crack at Dan.. Sadly he decided to run away from the challenge IMO

      2. @Todfod You mean like Alonso by Hamilton in 2007? ;D

    2. Why would Ferrari have fired Alonso yet kept Raikkonen anyway? That would be counterproductive. When a company undergoes reconstruction, the purpose is to keep your strengths and remove your weaknesses.

      1. When a company undergoes reconstruction, the purpose is to keep your strengths and remove your weaknesses.

        What you also need to do is to remove anything that prevents a successful restructuring. In the Ferrari case that included Alonso. The one thing that stands out in all Ferrari comments for 2015, is how the team and drivers are now all working together collectively – arguably as opposed to the one-man-band they have been employing the last 5 years. As late as today Arrivabene said Ferrari is “liberated”.

        1. PR talks: flowers, rainbows and unicorns.

    3. AFTER Alonso decided to leave

      Or after Alonso was encouraged to leave. Ferrari don’t exactly give the impression that they were fighting to keep him.

      1. Exactly. As though anyone would admit such a thing.

        1. One of the reasons Mattiaci was fired from the whole company was because he lost Alonso.

          1. @austus Of couuuuurse. Seriously, it’s fine to like Alonso, but let’s try to keep the BS to a minimum, shall we?

    4. It’s obvious to everyone that it was parting by mutual decision.

  4. Ferrari probably closed the gap to Red Bull and Williams.
    Last year they were clearly behind, now they look at least to be a lot closer. And that might be it.

  5. @keith: You write that Alonso ended the day second fastest, but in the table, he is 7th?

    1. Typo, I believe.

    2. @palle That should have said seventh as per the table; changed it.

  6. Please give us speed traps?
    I just know that Mclaren was 3-4 km/h short of forceIndia’s speed

    1. According to Sky, McLaren topped the first sector speed trap around 14:48. Can’t find any other reference to top speed (like pit straight) so others may have improved that.

      The McLaren also returns to the track and Fernando Alonso records a new top speed of 275.5 through the first sector speed trap.

      1. Williams overtook McLaren in the speed trap shortly afterwards according to Autosport but they didn’t say what speed.

      2. I’m pretty sure that what was meant there was “new top speed for the Mclaren”, not absolute top speed by any car.

        1. In Sky’s live coverage they talked about top speed in the pit straight for Ferrari with 280.4. And Massa or Hamilton, I’m not sure now, but one of the Mercedes made 278’s. Nonetheless, we don’t know the fuels and how much %engine is running and they also didn’t talk about every team, so let’s wait for Melbourne.

  7. I wouldn’t be surprised if Mercedes will win every race this season. I know they haven’t been topping the test times, but I’m sure they’ll top the charts at Melbourne. The reliability is truly astounding! What’s the worst they had so far? A water leak?

  8. Fastest time Lotus did in qualifying in Barcelona last season = 1:26.96. Fastest time so far in Barcelona testing = 1:26.28.

    Fastest time Ferrari did in qualifying in Barcelona last season = 1:27.1. Fastest time so far in Barcelona testing = 1:24.58.

    Fastest time Williams did in qualifying in Barcelona last season = 1:26.63. Fastest time so far in Barcelona testing = 1:24.67.

    Fastest time Red Bull did in qualifying in Barcelona last season = 1:26.28. Fastest time so far in Barcelona testing = 1:24.57.

    Fastest time Force India did in qualifying in Barcelona last season = 1:27.68. Fastest time so far in Barcelona testing = 1:24.7.

    Fastest time Mercedes did in qualifying in Barcelona last season = 1:25.23. Fastest time so far in Barcelona testing = 1:24.92.

    1. Can’t compare qualifying last year to testing this year as different tracks and weather conditions including different tyre compounds used – for e.g. no super soft or soft available for the GP last year. Force India are using their 2014 car at this test – so how do you explain their 3 second improvement?

    2. I like your time comparisons but it really doesn’t mean anything since there are lot of factors to be considered. The cars are not the same as last year and tire spec changed a little if I am mistaken. Even if we look at Force India which is using 2014;still there changes on the car that won’t make good comparison of times.

      1. But catches your eye how everyone is making significant gains except Lotus. Mercedes at least have said they aren’t doing qualifying laps, but they are still pretty fast.

    3. Maldonado did a 1.25.0 yesterday. in a lotus!

  9. Your times are wrong for lotus.

    1. Oops. Supposed to be a reply to rm.

  10. The 2nd place and the 90 laps are very good, it looks like this car is good for Kimi. I’m glad to this.

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