2009 F1 testing: March 9th (Update: pictures and video added)

Will the STR4 show as much promise as the RB5?
Will the STR4 show as much promise as the RB5?

As the start of the 2009 F1 season draws tantalisingly close, today sees the beginning of the final major test before the Australian Grand Prix.

Scuderia Toro Rosso will reveal their STR4 which we expect to be very similar to the Red Bull RB5, but with a Ferrari engine. And we’ll have our first chance to see all of the teams together, including the new Brawn GP outfit.

Today’s testing line-up

Today’s test is at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona.

Toyota – Jarno Trulli
Ferrari – Kimi Raikkonen
McLaren – Heikki Kovalainen
Brawn GP – Jenson Button
Red Bull – Mark Webber
Toro Rosso – Sebastien Bourdais
Williams – Kazuki Nakajima
Renault – Nelson Piquet Jnr
BMW – Nick Heidfeld
Force India – Adrian Sutil

Live timing

For live lap times check out F1today.nl, Sportlifepress, MSFree or TheF1 (various languages).

If you find any more good sites for following testing lap times, please post details below. Also keep an eye on BBC report Lee McKenzie’s Twitter account as she’ll be reporting from the test.

If you?ve got images or video to share you can upload them to the F1 Fanatic drop.io.

Further updates will be posted in the comments and any images or video from today’s testing will be added here.

Pictures from today’s test

More pictures of the Scuderia Toro Rosso STR4 making its testing debut here

Video from today’s test

2009 F1 testing

84 comments on “2009 F1 testing: March 9th (Update: pictures and video added)”

  1. The BGP001’s rear wing is like the RB5 one, it has no centrall pillar. It looks good, and it seems it works good as well.

    Button with the fastest time so far. If the car is 100% 09-spec, this is a BIG surprise, but a nice one

    1. I was about to say that.

      Its a good strategy. Nothing wrong and unethical in doing that.

      But I kinda feel; that central pillar in rear wing is crucial this year. Teams without it are pretty faster than teams with it.

      That and the diffuser; although what advantage it gives is unknown, going by Williams’ and Toyota’s timings.

    1. Two possible answers:
      1) McLaren fan: sandbagging and testing
      2) McLaren critic: problems
      But till Australia, I fear we will not be able to know who is right…

  2. Press release: Toro Rosso

    Sebastien Bourdais
    Chassis: STR4-02
    Best time: 1:22.158
    Laps: 86

    Scuderia Toro Rosso’s new car, the STR4, has completed its first day of testing, producing a positive result, having completed twenty laps more than a Grand Prix distance at the Spanish circuit.

    “It’s much too early to talk about performance,” said Bourdais at the end of the day. “However, the car seems to work well and we’ve already learned a lot today. If we can carry on like this for the next few days, it will be a good starting point for the season.”

    Bourdais continues to drive tomorrow, before handing over to Sebastien Buemi for the final two days of the session.

  3. Press release: Toyota

    Panasonic Toyota Racing today began its final test of preparation for the 2009 season at Barcelona’s Circuit de Catalunya. After early showers the track started off partly wet but there was no further rain and in spite of cool temperatures the tarmac soon dried out. Jarno Trulli was at the helm of the TF109, working on a programme that included aerodynamics, brakes and set-up. He had a successful day, putting in over 100 laps. Jarno will return to action tomorrow as the test continues.

    Jarno Trulli – Chassis TF109-04
    Position: 3rd of 10
    Best lap time: 1min 20.937s (+0.599s)
    Total laps: 121
    “This morning started off with drizzly conditions but the rain quickly tailed off, giving us the chance to have a good day’s work. The afternoon was windier but the track surface was fine. The car felt well balanced from the start and we worked on several new things on the aero side which gave us positive results. We were competitive throughout the day and we collected a lot of data so this was a useful start to the test.”

    Dieter Gass, Chief Engineer Race and Test
    “Today we carried out a lot of different tests, mainly on new aerodynamic components but also on brakes and suspension. So it was a full programme and there were no technical problems. Conditions were good and we made it through everything we had planned. We did a lot of laps so it was a positive start to our last week of preparation for Melbourne.”

  4. I hazard an assesment:

    BMW and Ferrari within the expectations.
    Wiliams and Force India need to improve a lot.
    Toro Rosso, Red Bull more and more close to the top.
    Renault and Toyota already within the top rank.
    BrawnGP: Wow, what has happened?

    McLaren: oh God, what’s that?

    I’m sure it will be a funny championship.

  5. Just looked at McLarens test line-up and it seems they’re having a “private test” before going to australia. The McLaren fan inside me makes me believe this is where they’ll have all the bits attached to the car behind closed doors.

    So basically we’ll all have to wait and see if they’re fast at the Australian GP!

  6. Press release: BMW

    Weather conditions: Sunny in the morning, overcast in the afternoon.
    Temperature: Air: 10 – 18 °C, Track: 11 – 23 °C
    Number of drivers participating: 10 from 10 teams

    Fastest lap overall: Nick Heidfeld (BMW Sauber F1 Team) 1:20.338 min
    Circuit length: 4.655 km

    Nick Heidfeld
    Chassis / engine: BMW Sauber F1.09-04 / BMW 86/9
    Test kilometres today: 429 (92 laps)
    Fastest lap: 1:20.338 min


    With the final pre-season test under way, the BMW Sauber F1 Team geared up to make its final preparations for the Australian Grand Prix. On the first day of the Barcelona test Nick Heidfeld concentrated on race related procedures, i. e. pit stop practice, to fine tune the working relationship between the driver, engineers and mechanics. Heidfeld also did a couple of practice starts.

    “The weather was perfect for today’s programme”, Heidfeld said after completing 92 laps. “We could try a lot of different set-up solutions and even do some aero work.”

    1. So Nick set the fastest time of the day while doing pit stop practice and practice starts? Wonder how quick the BMW will be when they start going for quick times… :D

  7. Ross Brawn: The man who wrecked the career of Rubens Barrichello. I can’t stand the fact that rubens has even agreed to extend his contract with this team named after himself. Mr Brawn once infamously remarked barrichello as being the most technically imperfect driver on the grid, fit only to play second fiddle to shoemaker. Honestly it would be better for barrichello to retire & start his own team than to be part of a team whose boss mocks him at his back. Mr R.Brawn is no bruce mclaren or frank williams.nor can he be held in the same esteem as colin chapman. put into simpler terms he is a immoral engineer who worked for a cheat. I dont see this team going too far, that too in the current economic climate. My only question is why dont we have teams named after maxie & bernie ? Or do all cheats have stakes involved in brawn gp, including shoemaker ?

    1. I’d like to see it too. Wouldn’t Barrichello know enough about Ross Brawn to form his own opinion? And has Ross Brawn ever actually been found guilty of cheating? Something to the tune of $100 million, perhaps?

    1. Fingers crossed then. What would be really interesting and exciting this season would be Hamilton vs Button. 2 very different drivers. Just need them both to be front running cars. And hopefully a motivated Button.

    2. Well, at least Craig Scarborough gave his opinion about the new floor:

      “With no question on the floor’s legality, McLaren may have stolen a march on the opposition at a time that many observers have been questioning the team’s testing pace.”

  8. Press release: Red Bull

    Driver: Mark Webber
    Car: RB5 – 03
    Laps: 117
    Best time: 1:22.246
    Circuit length: 4.655 km
    Fastest lap: N. Heidfeld – 1:20.338

    Every Formula One team entered in the 2009 World Championship is present here at the Catalunya Circuit, near Barcelona, for the final dress rehearsal in the form of a four day test, the last official session prior to the Australian Grand Prix.

    Recent tests in Spain have been blighted by bad weather, but apart from a few worrying drops in the early morning, sunshine has been the order of the day. Red Bull Racing is here with another new chassis, number 3, so the first item on today’s agenda was a shakedown, which went off according to plan. Once that was completed, it was back to general car development work prior to the season opener in Melbourne, evaluating various new aero and mechanical components. At the same time, Mark Webber ran a comparison between the Bridgestone “medium” and “soft” tyres. By the end of the day, the car had also completed enough laps to sign off a durability check on the Renault engine, which had been carried over from last week’s Jerez test.

    Mark Webber continues driving tomorrow, before handing over to Sebastian Vettel for the final two days.

  9. At Mp4-19 When you mention “cheats”, do you mean just like McLaren’s entire senior technical and managerial departmenr, and lead driver and lead tester in 2007? In a way you must do, ’cause those particular cheats have gone and signed them to an engine agreement lol

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