Sergio Pérez ended his first full day on track as a Red Bull Racing driver on Saturday with the one hundred and seventeen laps in the books and with the eighth fastest time.
The Mexican, racing for Red Bull this year after switching from the BWT Racing Point Formula One Team, admitted conditions at the Bahrain International Circuit were tricky on Saturday, but he was still able to get a lot of the planned work completed.
He suffered one minor worry when part of his bodywork detached itself down the main straight which brought out a red flag, but overall, Pérez was pleased with how things have begun since joining Red Bull over the winter.
“It was great to do a full day of testing in the RB16B and even though conditions are very tricky out there we got through plenty of work and there is plenty of development to come,” said Pérez.
“It’s great to be working with the Team and I’m getting more and more used to things – I can already feel the potential. I have the morning tomorrow in the car, so I’m looking forward to getting in some more laps.”
“It is clear that we have not been chasing lap times” – Guillaume Rocquelin
Guillaume Rocquelin, the Head of Race Engineering at Red Bull, was happy to see Pérez complete a full race simulation on Saturday, his first with the team, and one that will help him embed more with the mechanics ahead of the new season.
Rocquelin admitted there were a few minor issues that sprung up during the day but none of them caused any real delay, so they can go into Sunday’s final day of testing, where Pérez and Max Verstappen will share driving duties, with confidence.
“Sergio got through a full race simulation today, including pit stops, which was very useful for him as he embeds with the Team even more and gets up to speed with all our procedures,” said Rocquelin.
“We had a couple of small issues – nothing huge and it didn’t affect our engineering programme, so in a way these are things you want to find out about in testing. Those niggles aside, it was another solid day.
“It is clear that we have not been chasing lap times and have only run one of the harder compounds, so there are no real conclusions to be drawn from the overall time sheet. All in all, two good days and hopefully we’ll close out the test with another productive day tomorrow.”