Fernando Alonso had a positive afternoon at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya on Friday, but only after a disastrous morning when a turbo issue forced an engine change on his MCL33.
The McLaren F1 Team racer lost around five hours of track time as his mechanics changed his Renault power unit, but when he returned to the track he made up for lost time by completing ninety-three laps, with his 1:17.784s the second best time of the day and the third fastest time of pre-season testing.
“Today was a bit of a rollercoaster!” admitted Alonso. “This morning we had an engine issue which meant we couldn’t complete any of the morning programme, but the guys did a fantastic job once again to change everything on the car and get us ready as soon as possible.
“We had a very good afternoon, and compressed our full day’s schedule into the afternoon session. We managed to do everything we wanted and I’m quite happy with the result and the final day of testing.”
Alonso believes there is still some performance, and certainly some reliability, to come from the MCL33, but he is excited to see just where the team are in relation to their rivals when the season gets underway in Australia and all teams turn up the wick.
“I think there’s more to come from the car in terms of performance and also of course with reliability, but now we have two important weeks back in the factory to prepare for the first race,” said Alonso.
“We will see exactly where we are in Australia, when everyone is running with maximum performance, but I think it was a very productive two weeks of winter testing for us. We had a lot of new things to prove and test and now we have a couple of weeks to put everything in place.
“I’d like to say well done to the whole team for pushing hard, and now we’re all looking forward to going racing in Melbourne.”