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

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

  1. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 9th March 2009, 16:19

    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.”

  2. trocadero said on 9th March 2009, 16:21

    I got 100 to 1 on Jenson to be champion this year. Must be worth £20 punt.

  3. David said on 9th March 2009, 16:25

    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.

  4. djdaveyp said on 9th March 2009, 16:33

    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!

  5. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 9th March 2009, 16:58

    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.”

    • 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

  6. mp4-19 said on 9th March 2009, 17:57

    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 ?

  7. PJA said on 9th March 2009, 18:02

    Here is a news article for the people hoping McLaren have been using the 2008 rear wing because they have have some tricks up their sleeve, a radical new floor


    • djdaveyp said on 9th March 2009, 18:06

      So maybe using the 2008 rear wing was to distract everybody from this then!?

    • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 9th March 2009, 18:16

      Depends if this is a planned upgrade or a desperate attempt to claw back lost downforce.

    • djdaveyp said on 9th March 2009, 18:19

      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.

    • 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. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 9th March 2009, 18:15

    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. James said on 9th March 2009, 18:49

    Interesting. Autosport indicate a new front wing for McLaren, I presume the nose-wing connections?

  10. Ian Bryant said on 9th March 2009, 18:54

    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

  11. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 9th March 2009, 19:01

    Pictures added above and here’s our first press release from Brawn GP:


    Date: Monday 9 March
    Track: Circuit de Catalunya
    Driver: Jenson Button

    No of Laps: 82 laps
    Best Lap Time: 01:21.140
    Kilometres Covered: 382km
    Track Length: 4.655km

    Weather: Cool
    Ambient Temperature: Maximum 14°C
    Track Temperature: Maximum 27°C

    The Brawn GP Formula One Team’s 2009 car, the BGP 001, made its full track debut at the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain today following an initial shakedown at Silverstone, UK on 6 March.

    Taking to the track to participate in the group test session, the BGP 001 showed encouraging reliability and pace as the team intensifies its preparations for the season-opening Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne on 29 March. With only seven days of testing between now and the first race, the team’s test programme has been carefully planned to ensure a balance between reliability checks and improving the overall performance of the car.

    Driving responsibilities over the four-day test will be shared by the team’s race drivers Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello. After shaking down the car at Silverstone, Jenson had the opportunity to evaluate the car on a full Grand Prix circuit for the first time today. In addition to completing a reliability and set-up programme with the new chassis, he worked through new tyre evaluations using the Bridgestone Potenza slicks and completed a race start simulation.

    Jenson completed 82 laps over the course of the day and set the fourth fastest time overall. Team-mate Rubens will join the Brawn GP team in Barcelona tomorrow to take over the BGP 001 car from Jenson.

    “It has been a good first day in the BGP 001 with our new team, Brawn GP. I’d like to start by thanking everyone at the team for all the hard work that has contributed to getting us here today. We have enjoyed a positive opening day of running at our first test and achieved a total of 82 laps, which we are all very pleased with. We did experience a problem with the gearbox late in the day but we knew we might face some reliability issues in view of our lack of testing. Fortunately, it’s a minor problem that is easily addressed. It’s early days yet but generally it has been a positive start to our pre-season preparations.”

    RESULTS (All timings are unofficial)

    Pos Driver Team Time Laps
    1. Nick Heidfeld BMW Sauber 1:20.338 96
    2. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1:20.908 81
    3. Jarno Trulli Toyota 1:20.937 121
    4. Jenson Button Brawn GP 1:21.140 82
    5. Nelson Piquet Renault 1:21.662 126
    6. Sebastien Bourdais Toro Rosso 1:22.158 86
    7. Mark Webber Red Bull 1:22.246 117
    8. Adrian Sutil Force India 1:22.452 129
    9. Kazuki Nakajima Williams 1:22.813 111
    10. Heikki Kovalainen McLaren 1:22.948 90

  12. The team is going carefully on their own test schedule:

    McLaren release:

    The morning session was spent focusing on longer runs using an existing bodywork package in order to establish an accurate baseline ahead of the evaluation of new parts in the afternoon. During the lunchbreak, MP4-24 was fitted with a new front wing, floor and top body and the programme continued – on identical fuel-loads – throughout the afternoon. The team now turns its focus towards tuning the set-up in order to fully exploit the characteristics of the new aero kit.

    The pace will come, i´m sure, in the next days!

  13. Man, I am getting excited about this season. Brawn taking over late in the day has added to the speculation and I feel (with no proof mind you) that Mclaren have something up their sleeve.

    I doubt Button can win the championship but I really want him to do well.

  14. djdaveyp said on 9th March 2009, 19:51

    Now the cars are actually on track my withdrawal symtoms are starting to ease!

  15. Cameron said on 9th March 2009, 20:04

    Well my support will be behind McLaren as always. Being a Kiwi that latched on to F1 at a young age I developed a loyalty to the team with a New Zealand heritage. Just can’t help it… regardless if they win, or lose.

    I’ll also be supporting Toyota, as I’m a fan of Toyota’s high performance cars from times gone by.

    And this year, I shall be cheering on Brawn GP. Been a fan of Jenson for years, and Ross Brawn also. I also think their car looks competitive and appealing (for an 09 car anyway) and really hope they manage to get a GP win this season!

    Roll on Australia… Let’s get this show started ;)

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