Jenson Button led the way on the second day of pre-season testing in Jerez today.
Pirelli opted to take advantage of the overnight rain and moved their wet tyre test to today, sending a tractor and tanker out on track to sprinkle water on the surface. All teams except Toro Rosso and Caterham took to the track to test the wet compounds before the lunchtime break – as the afternoon session reverted to dry running.
Jenson Button, known for his excellence in wet conditions, took to the track almost immediately in order to make up the lost time that McLaren suffered due to mechanical issues on Tuesday. Button had a near flawless run and ended the day with a best lap time of 1.24.164, three seconds faster than Kimi Raikkonen’s timesheet-topping time on Tuesday.
Raikkonen was second down the order, seven tenths of a second behind Button’s best lap. Raikkonen too had a straight forward day with a brief trip across the gravel the only extracurricular activity for the Finn. Fernando Alonso will take the reigns of the prancing horse tomorrow.
Valtteri Bottas was third overall for Williams, recording a 1.25.344 best lap time. His 35 lap day went smoothly and the Finn raved about the FW36 – all good in the Williams camp, then. Nico Rosberg and Mercedes were also trying to make up for lost running following Hamilton’s crash on Tuesday, and completed a full race simulation. In total, he had a best lap of 1.25.588, which was two tenths slower than that of the Williams.
Sergio Perez was fifth for his new team, completing an average 37 laps and securing a time of 1.28.376 – some two tenths shy of Rosberg. Esteban Gutierrez set 53 laps, his running curtailed when he tried to run with the slicks on the wet track and slid into the gravel. Luckily he stopped just shy of the gravel but time was cost retrieving the car and analysing the C33.
Marcus Ericsson was back in the car for Caterham today, the Swede completely a mere 11 laps in the Renault power car. His CT-03 ground to a halt in the pitlane when he left his garage this morning as Renault were blighted with issues. He eventually got back out on track for some laps, albeit a short run, during which he set a 1.37.975 best time.
Sebastian Vettel had another poor day in Jerez, his Renault powered car also suffering problems. He completed three laps on Tuesday and a further eight laps today but was eventually forced to call it a day when his Energy recovery Systems faulted.
- Jenson Button – McLaren – 1.24.165 – 43 laps
- Kimi Raikkonen – Ferrari – 1.24.812 – 47 laps
- Valtteri Bottas – Williams – 1.25.344 – 35 laps
- Nico Rosberg – Mercedes – 1.25.588 – 97 laps
- Sergio Perez – Force India – 1.28.376 – 37 laps
- Esteban Gutierrez – Sauber – 1.33.270 – 53 laps
- Marcus Ericsson – Caterham – 1.37.975 – 11 laps
- Sebastian Vettel – Red Bull – 1.38.320 – 8 laps