The first Formula 1 test of 2017 came to a conclusion on Thursday and in our latest post F1 Top 10 looks at who impressed and who has work to do ahead of the second test!
Mercedes: It may only be testing but the World Champions proved why they are exactly that!
From the very first day Mercedes were straight on the pace and more importantly their new challenger the W08 was issue free apart from an electrical fault on Thursday morning.
Mercedes completed the most mileage at the circuit de Catalunya completing a staggering 558 laps giving the team valuable data.
New signing, Valtteri Bottas, who replaced 2016 World Champion Nico Rosberg set the fastest time over the four days with a 1:19.705.
While times don’t necessarily indicate speed at this early stage of the season it’s better to be at the top than the bottom.
Ferrari: After enduring a difficult 2016, Ferrari look to have answered their critics after an impressive first test in Barcelona.
The Scuderia competed 456 laps which puts them second behind Mercedes in terms of laps completed.
The Italian marque’s new challenger, the SF070H, was very reliable with not a single issue in the first four days.
Sebastian Vettel set Ferrari’s best time with a 1:19.952 on the soft tyres which was just over 0.2 seconds slower than Mercedes’ fastest time which was set on the faster ultrasoft tyres.
However, don’t read to much into their times. After all, they did top three out of the four days, in the first test in 2016 but failed to win a single race last season.
McLaren Honda: A partnership that was once unbeatable now looks unrecognisable.
McLaren had a woeful first test almost as bad as Jerez 2015.
More issues with the reliability of the Honda engine and what must Fernando Alonso be thinking!
McLaren only completed 208 laps in the four day test with only Toro Rosso doing less on 183 laps.
Even when McLaren were able to go on-track, it was clear that there’s a lack of pace.
Stoffel Vandoorne’s fastest lap for the team which was a 1:22.576 was the second slowest on the timesheets and to put that into context, it was 0.8 seconds slower than Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson despite Sauber having a year old Ferrari engine!
It appears to be one step forward for McLaren and two steps back. One thing’s for sure, the only way is up for the Woking based outfit.
Lance Stroll: It’s a tough business being a rookie in F1 any year let alone with the new regulation changes that’ve been made for 2017.
Stroll’s first week as a Williams F1 driver has been a tough one for the Canadian.
Two spins and a crash into the barrier in the space of two days have meant valuable testing time has been lost for Williams.
Stroll’s confidence will undoubtedly be dented as we head into the second week of testing.
At only 18, the Canadian, has faced many critics similar to when Max Verstappen got the Toro Rosso seat in 2015 with many pundits asking the question: “Is he to young to be in F1?”
Stroll will be hoping to answer those critics next week when the second test gets underway!