Venezuelan Pastor Maldonado has amazingly topped the time sheets today at Circuit de Catalunya in Spain. The driver who is entering his second year in the sport, drove for 106 laps today, and that was more than enough to earn him top spot by nearly a full second. He also beat the previous fastest testing time (Held by Nico Hulkenberg) by 3-tenths of a second!
In 2nd place was Michael Schumacher. Schumi brought the MGP WO3 around in a lap time of 1.23.384 after 127 laps.
In 3rd place was Saubers Kamui Kobayashi. The Japanese driver completed 99 laps of the Circuit de Catalunya in which he set a fastest lap time of 1.23.582.
Jenson Button in the MP4-27 was fourth overall. The Brit who came 2nd in last years championship and is expected to be Vettels number one rival for this year, brought the car around in 1.23.918 and racked up 114 laps.
Toro Rosso’s rookie, Jean-Eric Vergne completed 78 laps during the day during which he set a best lap time of 1.24.433.
Mark Webber took over from team mate Sebastian Vettel today and came in 6th. The Aussie completed 97 laps of Catalunya, but suffered from a Gearbox problem for most of the day and failed to extract the full potential from the car. He achieved a best lap of 1.24.771.
Felipe Massa driving for Ferrari completed 84 laps and achieved exactly the same time as Mark Webber in 6th place – 1.24.771.
In 8th place, Paul Di Resta completed 83 laps with a fastest lap of 1.25.646. In 9th place was Timo Glock for Marussia who achieved a fastest time of 1.26.173 after 108 laps.
Russian Vitaly Petrov in the Caterham brought up the rear with 1.26.448 after 70 laps.
Lotus and Hispania did not compete in the tests. Lotus withdrew after a problem with their chassis and Hispania did not come to Catalunya because they have still not passed the FIA Crash tests.
Just a reminder, The testing times are not to be taken as a good guide to the teams. The teams are completing various tests and may be sandbagging to not give away their real pace.
Unofficial Thursday test times from Barcelona:
1. Pastor Maldonado, Williams, 1:22.391, 106 Laps
2. Michael Schumacher, Mercedes, 1:23.384, 127 Laps
3. Kamui Kobayashi, Sauber, 1:23.582, 99 Laps
4. Jenson Button, McLaren, 1:23.918, 114 Laps
5. Jean-Eric Vergne, Toro Rosso, 1:24.433, 78 Laps
6. Mark Webber, Red Bull, 1:24.771, 97 Laps
7. Felipe Masssa, Ferrari, 1:24.771, 84 Laps
8. Paul di Resta, Force India, 1:25.646, 83 Laps
9. Timo Glock, Marussia*, 1:26.173, 108 Laps
10. Vitaly Petrov, Caterham, 1:26.448, 70 Laps