Felipe Massa, Williams, Circuit de Catalunya, 2015

Massa on top as MGU-K glitch halts Mercedes

2015 F1 testing

Posted on

| Written by

Felipe Massa, Williams, Circuit de Catalunya, 2015Felipe Massa put Williams on top of the times for the first time this year as the final four-day test began at the Circuit de Catalunya.

His best effort was a 1’23.500, over half a second quicker than the fastest times set in last week’s test by Romain Grosjean.

Second-fastest driver Marcus Ericsson was the only driver to complete more laps than Massa, completing 122 in his Sauber.

Lewis Hamilton’s early lap on medium tyres was quick enough for him to end the test third-fastest. However his running was brought to a premature conclusion after Mercedes diagnosed a problem with their MGU-K.

A hydraulic fault halted Jenson Button’s progress in the McLaren after a mere seven laps.

Daniil Kvyat’s day got off to an unpromising start when his car stopped within the first quarter of an hour. He later returned to the track and set the fourth-fastest time.

A substantially revised Toro Rosso STR10 also appeared in the hands of Carlos Sainz Jnr, but he was confined to the garage during the middle of the day due to a problem with his car.

DriverCarBest timeLapsDifferenceTyres
1Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes FW371’23.500103Soft
2Marcus EricssonSauber-Ferrari C341’24.2761220.776Super-soft
3Lewis HamiltonMercedes W061’24.881481.381Medium
4Daniil KvyatRed Bull-Renault RB111’25.947752.447Medium
5Romain GrosjeanLotus-Mercedes E231’26.177752.677Soft
6Kimi RaikkonenFerrari SF15-T1’26.327802.827Medium
7Carlos Sainz JnrToro Rosso-Renault STR101’26.962863.462Medium
8Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Honda MP4-301’31.47977.979Medium

2015 F1 season

Browse all 2015 F1 season articles

Author information

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...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

Posted on Categories 2015 F1 season, 2015 F1 testingTags ,

Promoted content from around the web | Become a RaceFans Supporter to hide this ad and others

  • 22 comments on “Massa on top as MGU-K glitch halts Mercedes”

    1. Not mentioning what the tyre compounds the best times were set on is slightly weird, as what do they tell us then?

      1. As usual I waited to get the correct information from Pirelli before putting it into the article because there’s often confusion over who did what time on what tyre.

    2. Even when you account for the difference in tyres (Massa usedsoft tyres) that’s still a pretty excellent lap, especially in testing

      1. Yeah, it may still be that the Mercedes PU in the Williams is still detuned for reliability, so perhaps even more to come from them. I think Williams will be good in qualifying this year, on Autosport’s live feed Chandhok was saying that the FW37 looked very well balanced on softs, which definitely does bode well for qualifying. It’s looking good for Williams currently, their race performances were very good last year and with better qualifying they should be pretty competitive, probably similar to Ferrari, perhaps (hopefully) ahead of Ferrari, and likely ahead of Red Bull.

    3. so the Williams is indeed quick…lovely!

      1. So it seems, good news indeed. I think they will end up a strong 2nd to Merc, ahead of Ferrari and Redbull.

      2. I think it’s all relative at this stage. There’s no way of fully knowing how good the Williams is relative to its likely competition.

        That’s not to say you’re wrong, I believe and hope that Williams can get a few wins this season. It’s just that as we’ve seen many times over the years there can always be surprises in how quick (or slow) the cars are and pre-season form means little for the most part when the lights go out in Melbourne.

        1. Well so far during 2015 Williams haven’t really focused at all on setting fast laps, in fact it almost seems like they tried to avoid showing their hand. The amount of confidence they have in the team suggests the car is pretty good, but yeah it would be silly to make concrete judgements yet.

    4. One of the most interesting situations today was the long run comparison between Wiliams and Ferrari.
      Massa did a 12 lap run on mediums shortly after his fastest lap on the softs. His long run laptimes were 1:28.1, 1:27.8, 1:27.7, 1:28.3, 1:28.4, 1:28.7, 1:29.1, 1:28.9, 1:29.1 and 1:28.8.
      Shortly afterwards Raikkonen did a similar 12 lap run, also on mediums: 1:27.4, 1:27.4, 1:27.7, 1:27.6, 1:27.6, 1:27.7, 1:27.8, 1:28.2, 1:28.2 and 1:28.3.
      Do your own math …

      1. Damn!! Kimi did pretty consistent laps there. Massa’s were not that consistent. This seems to bode well for Ferrari. If only we could correct these times for fuel.

      2. Mashiat Lam Gofran
        26th February 2015, 18:04

        Interesting. If the Williams and the Ferrari were indeed running similar levels of power and fuel, then there is a likely chance that Williams is behind them at the moment. But it may also be the characteristics of this track. Possibly the Ferrari has more downforce but the Williams has more grunt down the straight. Listening to Karun Chandok, the Mercedes, Williams and Ferrari (in that order) were the best through turns 7-9. And he also noted that the Williams seemed to be more understeery during the long runs, either meaning that they were running heavier fuel loads or that they set the car up with understeer in order to preserve their rear tyres. If the latter is true, then Ferrari is very much in the prime seat to be 2nd best to Mercedes.

        1. Not quite sure how you come to the conclusion that just because williams ran with a bit of understeer their car is worse. Often, especially with so much torque, drivers want a bit of understeer as it saves the rears, like you said, and it’s more consistent and predictable. I don’t think Ferrari is going to be any better than third this year. However, it’s a bit too early to tell what’s going to happen, other than that Merc will likely dominate again (or at least win the WCC), Williams has a good car, and Fernando Alonso must be thinking that he made a truly terrible mistake signing with Mclaren.

          1. “and Fernando Alonso must be thinking that he made a truly terrible mistake signing with Mclaren”, and most other people think that also, maybe except Vettel fans:-)
            Seems like McLaren and Williams are swapping places. Hopefully McLaren can get back up soon, but they don’t have as many engines to sample data for them as Renault had last year, when they also started terrible with the new power pack format.

          2. @zjakobs I never mentioned that the Williams is a worse car than the Ferrari. But chances are, it has less downforce than the Ferrari. Even in Ferrari abysmal season last year, their car still had the superior chassis and downforce levels. This could be seen from the fact that in high speed corners, the Ferrari was third behind the Red Bull and Mercedes. Williams (no offence) wouldn’t have been fighting for podiums if everybody had the same PU. Just look at Monaco and Singapore. All I’m saying is that it is probable that the Ferrari has more downforce levels, but might possibly be slower. And also never did I mention that the Williams was a bad car due to understeer. I clearly stated that it was either because they were running more fuel or trying to preserve rear tyres.

          3. @zjakobs and @palle Surely you don’t actually believe that FA would already be regretting his decision? You actually think he is that shallow, or that he bases everything on pre-season testing? Or that he is already convinced the Ferrari this year would have provided him the WDC? Because to me unless Ferrari is going to beat the Mercs this year to the Championships, why would FA care?

            He left the team based on, no doubt, several factors…not just that they weren’t providing winning cars, but they have been in upheaval, and have been making big changes…an indication that they have needed to reorganize, and that work is still being done and the gelling of the new mix of players has only begun too. You actually think FA is so shallow he would switch back to Ferrari today if he could, based on testing that still has everybody wondering where they all actually stand once they race in anger? Other than most are already assuming it’s another Merc year? So based on everything so far, FA, if he had a choice, would no longer want to help Mac/Honda build something together and try to do what he and Ferrari couldn’t do?

            I don’t get it.

            1. @robbie I don’t think he’d go back to Ferrari really. I said that mainly because he couldn’t get the one year deal he wanted with mclaren, and if he were at Ferrari this year, he could leave at the end. But I don’t think he wants to build a team basically from the ground up, like he’s doing with Mclaren. As he said earlier in the season, he just wants trophies now, not respect.

      3. The only thing that still gives me some hope for this year (not to defeat Merc, but at least battle for 3rd) is seeing Kimi smiling while doing publicity for Ferrari and just him with an happy vibe all around, which for Kimi is something not usual when things aren’t like he wants (http://kimiraikkonenspace.com/2015/02/24/raikkonen-spends-ferrari-filming-day-in-barcelona/).

      4. It does look promising for Ferrari. Though we don’t know the respective fuel loads and how old their tyres were. Nevertheless it looks good for Ferrari (at least in comparison to Williams).
        I think they could be the best of the rest, because I think Mercedes are definately out of reach.

      5. And in the longish run when Hamilton did his fastest lap, on mediums, he was consistently in the 1:25 and 1:26’s.

        http://live.autosport.com/commentary.php/id/822?_ga=1.248432643.586673617.1424936794 from 10:04 to 10:19

        1. That’s why we are saying battle for 3rd. We know Merc is miles away in front of the competition like last year. No need of facts, we all see the same tests.

    5. Chris (@tophercheese21)
      26th February 2015, 23:23

      Sheesh, McLaren aren’t looking too good.

    6. These McLaren woes are killing me. Come on! I’m going to be in Melbourne and I while I’ll wear my McLaren gear with pride regardless, it would be depressing if they don’t have at least have a decent showing! The odds of victory are laughable, but get some points, pleeease.

    Comments are closed.