Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen led the opening day of season’s first test at Jerez. The Finn clocked his F14 T around Circuit de Jerez in 1:27.104 to head to the top of the timesheets.
It was a quiet day with 91 laps completed in total and only five drivers managing to set a timed lap. Raikkonen himself stopped on his very first lap as a precautionary measure, bringing out the red flags on an otherwise empty track. He later returned to the track and did more laps than anybody(31), as he makes a return to the Italian squad.
"The biggest challenge is just getting all the things working as we want. Everyone wants to see more laps and obviously we want to do more laps, but it is pretty normal with such a big change. It will take time before we can all go at 100 percent," said the 34 year old.
"Lap times don't mean anything right now. We are just trying to get the car working as well as we can." he added.
Meanwhile, Lewis Hamilton crashed his Mercedes heavily on turn 1 due to a front wing failure. With no spare parts available, the team’s day came to an immature end. Nevertheless, the Brit was upbeat after setting the second fastest time of the day.
"The car feels quite good, especially considering it's so early in our programme. Overall it's been a positive day."
Defending world champion Sebastian Vettel had his own ‘silly problems’ which prevented him from running until the last 15 minutes of the test. He completed a total of three installation laps.
McLaren’s problems were even worse and MP4-29 didn’t emerge from the pits all day. They are expected to take their car for a round around the Spanish circuit tomorrow. However, that doesn’t apply for Marussia who are unlikely to give their 2014 challenger a shot before Friday.
Williams and Caterham had no time for official launch ceremonies. They straight away got their cars rolling after getting them ready by the afternoon. Williams' Valtteri Bottas was third fastest while Marcus Erricson in the Caterham failed to set a timed lap.
Lotus, as announced earlier, didn’t take part in the Jerez test.
Kimi Raikkonen, 1m27.104s, 31 laps
Lewis Hamilton, 1m27.820s, 18 laps
Valtteri Bottas, 1m30.082s, 7 laps
Sergio Perez, 1m33.161s, 11 laps
Jean-Eric Vergne, 1m36.530s, 15 laps
Esteban Gutierrez, 1m42.257s, 7 laps
Sebastian Vettel, no time, 3 laps
Marcus Ericsson, no time, 1 lap
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