Massa finished the first day of 2010 testing on top
Ferrari’s Felipe Massa finished the first day of 2010 testing at the top of the timesheets, rounding off a successful return to the current F1 machienary after a six-month lay-off from competitive action. The Brazilian was giving the F10 its track debut and completed an impressive 102 laps over the course of the day, the quickest in 1m12.574s.
Weather conditions at the Spanish venue were dry and sunny all day, although temperatures remained relatively low throughout, rising to an ambient high of just 15°C, while the track temperature peaked at 20°C. Nevertheless, the stable conditions allowed teams to run their programmes without interruption.
Joining Ferrari on-track were BMW Sauber, Mercedes, McLaren, Williams, Toro Rosso and Renault, all giving their 2010 challengers their official track debuts. Although most teams had largely trouble-free days, Toro Rosso’s Sébastien Buemi could complete just 18 laps due to a lengthy stoppage to fix a gearbox problem.
Despite the plethora of new cars hitting the track for the first time, there was only one red flag stoppage. Rubens Barrichello stopped on-track near the end of the session at turn 4, causing a 20-minute suspension in running as his car was recovered.
Over at Mercedes, Michael Schumacher returned got his first taste of the 2010 Mercedes when he took over from team-mate Nico Rosberg in the afternoon, completing 40 laps and outpacing Nico by six tenths of a second. Along with Nico and Michael, Pedro de la Rosa (BMW Sauber), Rubens Barrichello (Williams) and Robert Kubica (Renault) all made their track debuts for their new teams. Gary Paffett (McLaren) and Sébastien Buemi (Toro Rosso) completed the day’s line-up.
Testing continues in Cheste, Valencia tomorrow.
Unofficial times from Cheste (01/02/2010):
1. Felipe Massa (Ferrari) – 1:12.574, 102 laps
2. Pedro de la Rosa (BMW Sauber-Ferrari) – 1:12.784, 74 laps
3. Michael Schumacher (Mercedes) – 1:12.947, 40 laps
4. Nico Rosberg (Mercedes) – 1:13.543, 39 laps
5. Gary Paffett (McLaren-Mercedes) – 1:13.846, 86 laps
6. Rubens Barrichello (Williams-Cosworth) – 1:14.449, 75 laps
7. Sébastien Buemi (Toro Rosso-Ferrari) – 1:14.762, 18 laps
8. Robert Kubica (Renault) – 1:15.000, 69 laps