After having a limited amount of running on the first day of pre-season testing, Mercedes-AMG Petronas Formula 1 Team will have been relieved to get some laps under their belts and increase their understanding of how the W12 behaves in the various different tests it is put through.
Andrew Shovlin – Trackside Engineer at Mercedes, feels that the team had a much more successful day than the first day, completing all of the programs that they set out to complete in both the morning and the afternoon. Lewis Hamilton driving with different set-ups and Valtteri Bottas doing something similar in the early part of the afternoon session.
“It was a better day than yesterday and we were able to run to plan in both sessions. Lewis was in for the morning working on setup items and data collection and Valtteri continued with similar work in the early part of the afternoon.”
During the evening, conditions were more representative of those that will be present on a Grand Prix Weekend with Bottas topping the timing sheet on the softest compound of tyre towards the end of the session.
“We then spent the latter part of the day doing qualifying simulations with Valtteri on the softer compounds. We’ve made progress on the setup today and the balance was more together by the end of the session, albeit in calmer and cooler conditions.” said Shovlin.
Shovlin acknowledges that the car can be difficult to drive, with both Hamilton and Bottas stating that the rear end of the car was quite ‘snappy’ and uncontrollable. Both drivers and the team will be hoping for a trouble-free final day of testing so that they are able to complete their large program that they intend to cary-out.
“But the car is still a bit of a handful in the warmer and windier conditions of the morning and that’s something we need to get to grips with tomorrow. It’s going to be a busy day; we’ve got more than enough to do so we’re hoping for a trouble-free day.”