Alonso ends Jerez test quickest for Ferrari

2012 F1 testing

Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Jerez, 2012

Fernando Alonso, Ferrari, Jerez, 2012

Fernando Alonso was quickest on the final day of testing at Jerez.

His lap of 1’18.877 served as a timely response to questions over the performance of the Ferrari F2012.

Alonso set the lap early in the running before spending much of the day conducting aerodynamic tests in the new Ferrari.

Behind him the times were close – Jean-Eric Vergne, Sebastian Vettel, Lewis Hamilton and Kamui Kobayashi all lapped within two-tenths of a second of each other.

The world champion had a quiet start to the day as the team had to fix an electrical fault on the RB8.

Another driver to hit trouble was Bruno Senna, who caused two red flags when his Williams stopped on track. Nonetheless Senna completed another busy programme, logging 124 laps in his FW34, one fewer than he did yesterday.

Kamui Kobayashi lost a significant amount of time after an hydraulic leak in his Sauber C31 caused him to stop on the track. But was able to return to the circuit before the end of the session.

Having missed out on yesterday’s running, Nico Hulkenberg had his first taste of the Force India VJM05.

Jarno Trulli got behind the wheel of the Caterham CT01 for the first time. Having struggled with the power steering in last year’s car, he quickly reported back that the new model seemed to be an improvement in that area. However he was two seconds off the best time of the next-slowest car.

The next test will begin on 21st February at the Circuit de Catalunya.

Jerez test times

Driver Car Best time Laps Difference
1 Fernando Alonso Ferrari F2012 1’18.877 39
2 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Ferrari STR7 1’19.597 80 0.720
3 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault RB8 1’19.606 49 0.729
4 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes MP4-27 1’19.640 86 0.763
5 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault E20 1’19.729 95 0.852
6 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari C31 1’19.834 76 0.957
7 Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes VJM05 1’19.977 90 1.100
8 Bruno Senna Williams-Renault FW34 1’20.132 124 1.255
9 Jarno Trulli Caterham-Renault CT01 1’22.198 117 3.321

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63 comments on Alonso ends Jerez test quickest for Ferrari

  1. AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 10th February 2012, 21:23

    It’s good to see Ferrari at the top of the table but makes me wonder, if there problems are as big as Pat Fry (and everyone else) makes out, what did they sacrifice to be so fast today?

    • Robbie (@robbie) said on 11th February 2012, 14:59

      I don’t see it that way…firstly, I don’t believe they have ‘big problems’…I think they don’t know yet what their ‘problems’ are other than that they need more time with the car…nothing new or surprising to see here…they are just working to understand the car which is different enough from last year that they need to work it out. They are just concerned with the shortage of testing time and I’m sure other teams would love to have more too…Merc’s amount of testing time with their new car will be even less, but they told us quite a while ago that their decision was to skip the first test with the new car. They should be hoping they don’t have many growing pains with what I would assume should be a departure from last year too, unless they want to be a distant 4th still…

      Secondly, why did Ferrari have to ‘sacrifice’ something to be ‘so fast?’ Perhaps FA is a good driver, the car suits him better than FM, and they have already begun narrowing down some setups that have started to head them in the right direction…perhaps thanks to some of FM’s work as they strive to understand this car.

      Of course there is a chance the car is problematic, that they didn’t nail it, and that they will be struggling all season…but I see nothing in this first session to suggest anything anywhere near that. Odds are much greater that by race one they will have a much better understanding of any problems that will have consistantly arisen, and then they will know what to do about. It’s too soon imho to expect them to know everything about this car yet, but they have a first session under their belt and will no doubt be well prepared with a concise plan for the next session.

  2. Jake (@jleigh) said on 10th February 2012, 21:28

    More crazy journalism from Andrew Benson today in order to back up his view that Red Bull are fastest. Today he came up with this gem:

    But perhaps Hamilton’s most revealing remark was this: “You never know what fuel loads people are on. I think we’ve been quite aggressive with our fuel loads.”

    A translation of which seems to be that McLaren are running with less fuel on board than they might normally be expected to – which will make their lap times look more impressive….

    In summary, then, Red Bull again look like the team to beat, and there is a mixed picture from McLaren and Ferrari.

    So what he’s done he is taken a very ambiguous quote, one which has been taken by many to show the complete opposite, and twisted it to support his view, even if it goes against the evidence of the time-sheets.

    In fact, when we look at the times, Hamilton did a 13 lap run that started with a 1.19.866. This run was stopped because of a red flag so may have been longer. I am going to make an assumption here but I think it’s a safe one; I’m pretty sure Mclaren were not just running enough fuel to get that run done, probably a decent amount more.

    Considering that, if we then look at Williams, Senna did a 1.20.106 at the beginning of a 14 lap run. This was the final stint of a race simulation, and Bruno stopped on track at the end of that run, possibly running the tank dry? (another assumption I know, but at least a logical one).

    Therefore, Mclaren’s 1.19.8 at the beginning of a 13 lap run, on which it can be assumed they weren’t running on empty towards the end of it, seems to me like quite an impressive pace. In fact, looking at all the other teams it is the quickest time posted at the beginning of a decent length stint. RB have the next quickest time on a longer stint, with a 1.19.606 on an 8 lap stint.

    But hey, testing times mean nothing!

    • Bleeps_and_Tweaks (@bleeps_and_tweaks) said on 11th February 2012, 12:16

      @Jake Yeah I’ve found some of his summaries in the live commentary quite bewildering to be honest; and when I read his analysis of that quote from Hamilton it was pretty much the cherry on the top! How on earth does he know that Hamilton didn’t mean Mclaren were being ‘aggressive’ by running HIGH fuel loads?!?! Which is what I think you were commenting on above, where Hamilton’s quickest time was the first lap of a 13+ lap stint!

      I’ve also been very disappointed by the technical analysis of Gary Anderson; in a video interview with Jake Humphrey he basically wrote of the MP4-27 at the launch…before it had even turned a wheel!

      I know I’m biased as I’m a lifelong Mclaren fan, but some more objective analysis from a media corporation that is supposed to be balanced would be very much appreciated.

    • Bleeps_and_Tweaks (@bleeps_and_tweaks) said on 11th February 2012, 12:19

      @jleigh or maybe that’ll work…

  3. matthewf1 (@) said on 11th February 2012, 0:19

    I think Red Bull are the quickest by far, I mean if anyone will be doing some serious sandbagging it’s them, yet they already seem to be the quickest over significant runs, and that’s without showing their hand.

    The order I would guess they may be in at the mo would be:
    Red Bull
    Toro Rosso

    • matthewf1 (@) said on 11th February 2012, 0:25

      Red Bull
      Force India
      Toro Rosso

    • Todfod (@todfod) said on 11th February 2012, 8:04

      Check out this site to get an accurate picture of the lap times in long stints.

      Ferrari didn’t get a proper run all day today.. so its kind of hard to place them yet. And although its a known fact not to read too deep into pre season testing time, it still makes for an intersting comparison

  4. remengo said on 11th February 2012, 11:11

    It seems that someone here is already feared of a fast ferrari hehehe…already given classifications….unfounded hopes?
    Will see soon….

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