Jenson Button was back behind the wheel of his McLaren-Honda MP4-31 today as the team completed their first day of in-season testing with a total of 86 laps at Circuit de Catalunya.
The team reviewed the upgrades that have been installed since the start of the season while evaluating a number of components for future use as the team continue their development on the European leg of the season.
The morning session saw Button top the times as the team sent the car out with aero rakes to gather data. The car performed solidly and this led to longer runs with race simulations in the afternoon.
“Today was a seamless day of testing – with both the team and car working well throughout the day, it’s satisfying that we were able to complete day one of the test according to plan.” said Dave Redding, Team Manager.
Tomorrow will see Stoffel Vandoorne take up testing duties for the first time since his points finish in the Bahrain when he stood in for the injured Fernando Alonso.
“We’ll look to run a similar programme tomorrow with Stoffel, refining today’s work and gathering yet more data ahead of next week’s Monaco Grand Prix.” added Redding.
Honda R&D Co Ltd Principal Engineer Satoshi Nakamura explained the programme that the team ran through.
“Today’s power unit run programme consisted mainly of race set-up for the Monaco Grand Prix next weekend. The street circuit of Monaco has many slow corners which require stability in the engine’s low-revving range, so we focused on its driveability and the various modes of the power unit to bring out its full potential. Our plan is to continue to run similarly tomorrow.
“We finished the day with 86 solid laps of trouble free running, and we are looking forward to the second day of testing tomorrow.” he concluded.