Lando Norris, McLaren, Circuit de Catalunya, 2019

Norris fastest for McLaren as Mercedes reveal upgraded car

2019 F1 season

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McLaren led the first day of the second pre-season Formula 1 test thanks to a rapid lap by Lando Norris in the final hour of running.

However the team also had two stoppages during the day’s running. The first, in the morning, was due to a loss of hydraulic pressure. The second struck shortly after Norris set his session-topping time of 1’17.709, following which the MCL34 did not return to the track.

McLaren led a quartet of teams at the top of the times who all lapped quicker than they did last week. Pierre Gasly, second, was just six-thousandths of a second off Norris in his Red Bull.

Lance Stroll cut 1.8 seconds off Racing Point’s previous best time to end the day third-quickest. He ended up a tenth of a second ahead of Sebastian Vettel, who drove the afternoon session for Ferrari. Team mate Charles Leclerc only managed 29 laps in the morning as the team investigated a cooling problem on its SF90.

Having been quickest at midday, Antonio Giovinazzi ended the session fifth-fastest for Alfa Romeo. A late improvement for Alexander Albon moved him up to seventh.

[smr0901]Williams managed to complete some serious running with its FW42. George Russell improved on its best time but more importantly put well over 100 laps on the chassis which only ran for the first time on the third day of testing.

Lewis Hamilton had a productive morning in a heavily updated Mercedes W10 which featured a revised nose, front wing and engine cover. He covered 88 laps during the first part of the test.

However Valtteri Bottas hit trouble when he left the pits after the lunch break. The car stopped on its first lap out of the pits with an oil pressure problem and he missed almost all of the remaining session while the team replaced his power unit. He emerged again a few minutes before the session ended.

2019 pre-season test day five lap times

Pos.Car numberDriverTeamModelBest timeGapLapsTyres
14Lando NorrisMcLarenMCL341’17.70980C4
210Pierre GaslyRed BullRB151’17.7150.006136C3
318Lance StrollRacing PointRP191’17.8240.11582C5
45Sebastian VettelFerrariSF901’17.9250.21681C3
599Antonio GiovinazziAlfa RomeoC381’18.5890.88099C4
623Alexander AlbonToro RossoSTR141’18.6490.940103C4
716Charles LeclercFerrariSF901’18.6510.94229C3
820Kevin MagnussenHaasVF-191’18.7691.060131C4
963George RussellWilliamsFW421’19.6621.953119C5
103Daniel RicciardoRenaultRS191’20.1072.39877C3
1177Valtteri BottasMercedesW101’20.1672.4587C2
1244Lewis HamiltonMercedesW101’20.3322.62383C2
1327Nico HulkenbergRenaultRS191’20.3482.63980C3

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2019 F1 season

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Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Circuit de Catalunya, 2019
Mercedes brought many new parts for its W10 on Tuesday

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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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19 comments on “Norris fastest for McLaren as Mercedes reveal upgraded car”

  1. W10 looks like a spoonbill now ;)

    1. Yeah. Best-looking car poll was three days too soon.

  2. Does anybody know about McLaren’s long run pace? What times were they lapping on C3 tyres and how does it compare to the others? I think this might be a more reliable piece of data than the fastest time with (probably) low fuel.

    1. Nothing special. Slightly slower than the midfield from what I remember. When Norris went fastest on his glory run, I was surprised. But I wouldn’t be surprised that late red flag was due to him running out of fuel the lap after the fastest time.

      1. I hope not. I’ve read his status on Facebook and he said that they’ve improved on the long runs, so this might be a positive sign. Today’s problems are slightly less positive.

    2. Day 4 last week Norris did a suspiciously good longish run (26 laps) on C1 tyres that I think averaged out at mid 1:23s from what I remember. So depending on fuel etc it’s nothing special but not as bad as feared by many.

    3. Nice to have a Didier fan join us…

  3. What upgrades did McLaren bring. Over at F1T no one has noticed anything.

  4. I know this year it will not happen but I hope the field keeps getting tighter. I could see a time when we have 5 teams able to with a race. McLaren, Ferrari, Mercedes, Renault, Red bull. If we could get that to happen the sport would be in a really really good spot. I really hope McLaren will have found some speed this year to get closer to the front and same with Renault. I know this is optimistic of me but i hope as soon as next year this could happen.

  5. Mercedes got their b spec car ready for testing already! Got to admire their efficiency and timely execution.

  6. Now the Merc not only slow, but it’s not reliable as well. Running on non-party mode also triggered PU failure!

    1. Clutching for straws much?
      The Mercs weren’t chasing lap times last years testing either and I think across the whole testing period were on average seventh-eight quickest. And look how last year turned out.

      As for reliability? One breakdown so far, and it was an oil pressure problem, which would not neccesarily be in the PU, but could be in the pumps, the pipes or even they got a warning light and had him pull over and stop as a precaution.

    2. Sebfosi showing humility as always…

      I suppose papaya saw that picture of Bottas’ 2017 car in flames on twitter and got excited too.

  7. Mercedes is in trouble.

    Its good that they realized it quick and changing aero direction/concept. They are the team gone different aero route to most others (no rake, different concept front wing to the rest). The latest update they introduced seems rushed and maybe that’s why they had reliability (very tight packaging) trouble today.

    Ferrari is the standout quickest car right now. Little chance they would be beaten for the first few races.
    I hope Redbull gives them a good competition at the front as Mercedes would need some races to sort out their car.

    1. Change what concept? Do you think they could’ve done all that work within 6 days?

      And in trouble, based on what? You saying McLaren, alfa, Haas, Renault and Torro Rosso are faster than they are?

    2. Mercedes is following their plan (which I claim no knowledge of, just guessing).

      They brought a conservative kit last week, ran the heck out of it, and correlated with their WT/CFD data– and then based on that, decided which of the 3-4 concurrent development paths would be best suited to move forward with, and this week, they put that kit on.

      Personally, I expect a mildly different car in Melbourne, with major changes coming in Spain– But there’s no way they designed, tested and fabricated all of those parts since last week.

  8. have Danny Ric posting his fastest time on the C2. Who is correct?

  9. In other news, most successful racing team ever tests out different ideas in a testing session.

    Nothing to see here.

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