Felipe Massa says Ferrari has been working hard at Maranello to ensure the new F2012 runs more reliably at this week’s test at Barcelona than was the case at the opening pre-season sessions in Jerez.
The Italian team completed fewer laps with its new car than any team that was in action for three or more days in southern Spain two weeks ago, racking up just 270 laps in comparison to Lotus’s benchmark total of 404. The F2012 suffered from hydraulics trouble at various points of the week, while Fernando Alonso explained that the fact the new machine features so many different concepts to recent designs, set-up tweaks were taking longer than normal to complete.
Massa, who will drive on days three and four at Barcelona, says increased mileage is therefore top of the team’s agenda this week, with Ferrari’s position on the the timesheet again largely irrelevant at this stage.
“It will be important to do a lot of kilometres, because we have many ideas we want to try out and it’s essential we don’t have any problems: I know that on this front too, the team has worked assiduously to ensure that me and Fernando can do a lot of laps,” he told the Ferrari website. “I’ll say it before we even start: again this coming session, we won’t be looking at the stopwatch, especially as you can never know what your rivals are running. The truth will only begin to emerge in Melbourne.”
The Brazilian driver prepared for this week’s running by spending two days in the Ferrari simulator driving both Jerez and the Circuit de Catalunya at Maranello and remains optimistic over the F2012’s development curve: “There’s a lot of work to do to fine tune the F2012 but, as both Fernando and I said last week, I think this car has plenty of potential.”