Four time world champions Red Bull have looked on as another day of testing was wasted thanks to issues with the RB10.
The team did complete 77 laps with Sebastian Vettel behind the wheel, which is a darn sight more than in the past, but a mysterious front end issue saw Vettel spin off in the braking zone for turn one.
Even then those 77 laps were completed at a much reduced pace with a fastest time of 1:37.468 to show for their efforts. However, that was still faster than the McLaren.
The McLaren, at the hands of Jenson Button, suffered two major issues during the day – the first of which was an engine failure which was quickly followed up with electrical issues in the MP4-29. The end result for the team’s hard work, was a time seven tenths shy of Red Bull and in tenth place overall.
On the other end of the grid was the continuing tale of the golden era of Mercedes power – in none McLaren chassis that is – this time it was Lewis Hamilton to take the Merc’ medal for top finisher.
Losing most of the morning to gearbox issues it seems clear that come Melbourne no one is safe from reliability issues but the German team did pick up the pace in the afternoon setting a time of 1:33.278 to go seven tenths faster than Valtteri Bottas in the increasingly rapid Williams.
While Red Bull may have been having problems, sister team Toro Rosso had a smooth day of running after days of trouble and clocked a decent time good enough to gain fifth place ahead of the Sauber and – surprisingly – Marussia who seemed to have their first day of clear running.
With testing over and done with, it is exactly two weeks until the Formula One circus takes on Melbourne for the first race of 2014.