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Jerez Test Day 3: Ferrari Show Their Potential as Massa lets rip
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Posted By: Matt Meadows  |  07 Feb 2013   |  7:09 pm GMT  |  147 comments

Felipe Massa underlined Ferrari’s statement of intent by topping the times on the penultimate day of testing, in Jerez. He set the two fastest times of the week to end the day around a second clear of Nico Rosberg and Sebastian Vettel. After two difficult days of unreliability for Mercedes, Rosberg managed to make up for lost time with 148 laps, or 655km of running; more than two race distances in one day.

Ferrari have been one of the first teams to start bringing development parts to the car after starting tests on Tuesday with a fairly standard launch car.

After spending much of yesterday concentrating on constant speed runs for aerodynamic measurement, fitting a different exhaust configuration and a new floor, he was able to let loose in the F138 today during a series of short runs on the soft tyre this morning. He lowered Romain Grosjean’s benchmark from Wednesday and became the only driver to dip in to the 1m:17s. He did this twice during the day.

He did the time on the first lap of a six lap run, which means he will have had around 20 kilos of fuel on board, so there is another six tenths of a second there for a low fuel time.

The Ferrari looks consistent on the longer runs too, the degradation looks well managed and the drop off in performance not as severe as McLaren and Mercedes’ long runs at this stage.

Ferrari found the same issues on the softer compound tyres that other teams have during the week. Although temperatures have been considerably lower than we can expect to see later in the year, Pirelli have admitted that the Jerez circuits abrasive surface prohibited teams from attacking over a a series of laps, with driver’s having to adopt a one-lap-on one-lap-off strategy.


So far this week Red Bull have been able to lap most consistently and quickly over a longer run. With Sebastian Vettel behind the wheel of the RB9 for the first time today they were able to complete an eleven lap run on the medium tyre with an average lap time of 1:21.7s – a pace which any other team is yet to show of a run of similar length. As a comparison to the changes in lap times over the course of the week, Jenson Button averaged 1:24.1s over an eight lap stint on the medium tyre, on Monday.

“It is an evolution of last year’s car and we have tried to keep the strengths and address some of the weaknesses. Obviously with relatively stable regulations the car is an evolution as are some of the others,” Christian Horner said today.

Red Bull has now done 1,222 kilometres of running on the new car. Vettel was one of three drivers to complete more than one hundred laps today, alongside Esteban Gutierrez and Nico Rosberg. Mercedes were in need of a faultless day, and after completing 148 laps they will be looking to Lewis Hamilton for some short, light fuelled runs when he returns to the car tomorrow.

Rosberg and Vettel ended the day in second and third places, both around a second off Massa’s pace.

Rosberg’s time was set on the first lap of a 16 lap run in the Mercedes. He will have had 60 kilos of fuel on board at the time, which is 40 kilos more (equivalent to around 1.1 seconds of lap time) than Massa’s fastest timed lap. However the Mercedes lap times tail off steeply towards the end of the run. This is worth keeping an eye on in the next two tests when the teams will do race distance runs and we will get a clear picture of which cars are looking after their tyres the best.

At this early stage it looks positive for Ferrari.

Kimi Raikkonen had his first day in the Lotus E21 and spent much of the morning getting himself comfortable and conducting constant speed aero tests. A series of short runs this afternoon brought him to within 2/10ths of Vettel.

Raikkonen was closely followed by Jean-Eric Vergne, in his first outing in Toro Rosso’s STR8, and James Rossiter in the Force India. Vergne continued Toro Rosso’s promising pace this week as he completed a number of short runs and he too ended the day within 2/10ths of Vettel.

Rossiter had a troubled morning after striking his front-jack man. The mechanic has been checked and given the OK, but Force India were hit by exhaust troubles later in the afternoon when Paul Di Resta took over.

After topping the times on Monday, Jenson Button ended the day in seventh. McLaren chose to concentrate of long, fuel laden runs in the afternoon with Button completing eighty-three laps in the process.

[Additional Technical Analysis - Mark Gillan]

JEREZ TEST DAY 3
1. Felipe Massa – Ferrari 1m17.879s 85 Laps
2. Nico Rosberg – Mercedes 1m18.766s +0.887 148
3. Sebastian Vettel Red Bull 1m19.052s +1.173 102
4. Kimi Raikkonen – Lotus 1m19.200s +1.321 40
5. Jean-Eric Vergne – Toro Rosso 1m19.247s +1.368 85
6. James Rossiter – Force India 1m19.303s +1.424 42
7. Jenson Button – McLaren 1m19.603s +1.724 83
8. Esteban Gutierrez – Sauber 1m19.934s +2.055 110
9. Max Chilton – Marussia 1m21.269s +3.390 78
10. Valtteri Bottas – Williams 1m21.575s +3.696 86
11. Charles Pic – Caterham 1m22.352s +4.473 57
12. Paul di Resta – Force India 1m23.729s +5.850 7

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147 Comments
  1. Anthony Riley says:

    James,
    What have your heard re. Rory Byrne working on the 2014 Ferrari? I have only seen reports in the Italian press. Nothing in English.

    1. James Allen says:

      I saw a quote in italian from him on this but haven’t followed up on it yet

      1. Enzo says:

        I’ve read this article in Italian media, the quote is basically all he says.
        “It’s a nice car, but it’s all child’s play compared to what awaits us in 2014″ he says about the F138, and then admits he’s working full steam on the 2014 car.

      2. JCA says:

        James, he was out of the game an awfully long time, trying to build electric cars here in RSA and working on the Enzo replacement. Do you think he’d be effective hands-on, or would it be more of a advisory role?

      3. Tank says:

        wasn’t it Gordon Murray that was building an electric car? Greets from fellow South African!

      4. JCA says:

        Yes, looks like I was wrong Tank, I seem to recalled something about him designing a car called Juelle.

    2. Anne says:

      This what I know. The day Ferrari launch the car Rory Byrne was present at the cremony. At some point he gave an interview to German magazine Auto Motor und Sport where he confirmed he has been and is working in the 2014 car. Also a few British and Spanish websites run a translation of the interviewin their respective languages. That´s how I found out about it. Just go to Google, type Rory Byrne and you´ll find something there

      1. Miha Bevc says:

        He said that 2013 car is “kid’s play” compared to what they are doing for 2014.

    3. zerof50 says:

      I read somewhere (cant remember where) that Mr. Byrne was playing an adviser role.

    4. raikkes says:

      Kimi did 40 laps and clocked a 1.19.2 Vettel did 120 laps and clocked a 1.19 flat that lotus looks fast.

  2. Joel says:

    Read somewhere that Button’s fastest on day one was a result of him cutting across a chicane.
    Does anyone know whether it is true?

    1. david nelson says:

      Sorry, I don’t, but as timing is unofficial, of he did it might explain why he got away with it….if it happened.

      Anyone know what happened to Button’s car right at the end of the day?

    2. Bob says:

      It wasn’t, that was a joke he made

    3. Seán Craddock says:

      They’re all unofficial times. Does it really matter?

    4. Quade says:

      Button himself said that. However, cutting a chicane would only add a tenth or two at most. It was a genuinely quick time.
      What needs to be seen though, is if that speed gap is maintained in the last two tests (when all teams begin to work on raw speed). The first two tests are basically to ensure that the car remains seated on the wheels and generally goes forwards.

    5. AuraF1 says:

      The other drivers seem to have accepted its a solid time.

      I think it’s worth mentioning that button managed that time on hard tyres on a dirty, cold track.

      As much as I’m a mclaren fan I’d love to see Ferrari taking it to red bull too (I just like the idea of a close battle with all the top teams) but I think even massa pointed out that he couldn’t have topped buttons time on the same tyres on the first day.

      1. Paul Watson says:

        Massa actually said he could have put the car at that sort of time if he needed too.

      2. Brad says:

        He was referring to Webber’s time, which was 2nd best

      3. KRB says:

        Massa said that was a fast time on the first day. And it was.

      4. AlexD says:

        I read from Massa that he would not be able to do it…

  3. Spyros says:

    Thanks for the detailed report!

    I hope Mercedes has another long run tomorrow.

  4. Dren says:

    James,

    Rosberg did a 12 lap run with an average time of 1.21.778. His worst lap was a 23.48, which was also his last lap. His best lap in that run was a 20.756, which was his second lap.

    It is still tough to figure out who is running what fuel, though.

  5. Seán Craddock says:

    I don’t understand how the times are still slower than last year. Most of the cars are said to be evolutions of last years cars and a car at the end of the season should be faster than the pre season. Why is there such a big difference? The weather can’t be that much different can it?

    1. grat says:

      DRS is no longer allowed whenever the driver wants it. I believe they designated the two straights for DRS, and the rest of the time the driver has to live with full downforce.

    2. SupraF1 says:

      Perhaps because DRS use is now only for straights?

    3. KRB says:

      No DRS anywhere u like could account for it.

    4. Tim says:

      I think the tyres are different this season – no doubt someone will correct me if I am wrong – that can make huge differences.

      1. Noble says:

        But according to Pirelli, this year’s tyres are suppose to 0.5 seconds faster than last year’s

    5. Glennb says:

      Possibly the track temperature / condition is different this year. Also the tyres are a little different now. It doesn’t take much ;) I wouldn’t read too much into any of the times during testing. You get the odd ‘glory’ lap but most teams are working towards debugging, aero tweaks etc. Don’t expect the biggies to show there hand just yet. The best indication you will get will be on saturday during the Melbourne GP ;) That will be the first real indication that teams will get to see how they stack up. Even then, things change radically in the first few GP. JB is a good example. He started out brilliantly and ended up in ‘set-up hell’ later in the year.
      Fascinating sport.

  6. Gordon says:

    Hi James how do you feel the ‘backmarkers’ are progressing? They never really get any airtime or mentions in reports, so as a Marussia fan it is hard to find a journalist opinion. Thanks

    1. James Allen says:

      I’ll have something on that tomorrow

      1. Gordon says:

        Thanks in advance

  7. goferet says:

    So as it stands, the top teams have begun stamping their authority over the winter championship.

    We have had Mclaren, Lotus and now Ferrari top the first couple of days. Only waiting for Mercedes to top Friday to confirm we shall be having a five team bonanza pushing for the 2013 honours.

    Okay, regards Red Bull long run pace could that be a little misleading. What I mean is during some 2012 free practice sessions, we saw Red Bull having incredible long run pace only for the race to come around and it wouldn’t translate >>> Just a thought

    Either way, Horner already said it will be a mighty close season dictated by track characteristics favouring different teams so I guess I shouldn’t worry about anybody running away with it.

    Also it was pretty encouraging seeing Rosberg putting in consistent times for Mercedes on the soft rubber considering their tyre woes last season.

    Now the fact Massa is impressed by Jenson’s time from Tuesday, seeing as Ferrari begun with a pretty standard car, maybe this would explain why Massa couldn’t come close to that mark.

    It’s either that, if not, then Ferrari may still struggle with their qualifying pace in relation to the competition.

    Last but not least, good effort by Max Chilton, he finished the day ahead of some nearest competition, all this by a rookie.

  8. Karol296 says:

    James,
    Is it true, that McLaren has 3 wind tunnels (2 F1 grade and 1 automotive grade)? I found this information here:
    http://tnij.org/t92v

  9. P.Beenkens says:

    James some (german) internet sites are not sure Ferrari isn’t worried about the current performance of their car.How do you see their form at the moment ? Have you heard anything from the Ferrari engineers or mechanics about the performance of the car , if it’s dlivering the performance they expected from it ?

    1. Baba says:

      Which sites?
      Many Thanks.

    2. AlexD says:

      Have you actually read the report from James? He said that it is looking good for Ferrari as this stage and explained why.

    3. db4tim says:

      They are German sites….

    4. Glennb says:

      We wont really know how the Ferrari is traveling until Alonso sits his derriere in the seat. Not taking anything away from Felipe but hey, lets face it, the car isn’t exactly build around him…

  10. Quade says:

    The 3rd test was most interesting with the revealation that Pirelli have flunked this years soft tyres. It seems they can only do one fast lap before heating up, so drivers now do one hot lap followed by a slow one to cool them down.

    It a big fail.

    Its easy to see Pirelli moving back to last years rubber. I don’t even see why they think they must play a part in the excitement of F1, all they need do is provide reliable tyres and let the drivers and technical trickery do the rest. Afterall, its the drivers and their teams that are the spectacle of F1.

    1. graham says:

      “so drivers now do one hot lap followed by a slow one to cool them down.” This was the normal thing to do last year. Blame bernie for the pirelli influence on results, I personal enjoyed the start of last season but found it a bit suspect! It is easy for pirelli to insert a super tyre to the team/driver of there choice.

      1. Carlo_Carrera says:

        Bernie has nothing to do with the Pirelli tires. The FIA controls what Pirelli does. Blame them not Bernie.

    2. Carlo_Carrera says:

      Pirelli was told to make the tires this way by the FIA. Blame them, not Pirelli.

    3. hero_was_senna says:

      1) All I have read is that Pirelli don’t think Jerez is a suitable test venue anymore because of how abrasive the track surface is.

      2) The FIA and the teams have asked Pirelli since day 1 to provide tyres that did not last a race distance, to increase the spectacle.

      1. Kay says:

        With regards to your point 2, although that’s what reported in the press, I never believed a word in that. I’ve always thought when Pirelli came back, they weren’t so confident in making a F1 spec tyre so had to play it safe, but wanted to ‘gift wrap’ it for the sake of their company’s image, so it looks as if teams + FIA asked for this.

        Anyway, I agree with Quade’s comments that Pirelli should just make tyres and stop trying to have any input into making different tyres every year. It’s too damn confusing as it is with 5 to 6 compounds and have to remember what different colour codes stand for. I was happy with how Bridgestone went about the business back then with only 2 dry compounds.

      2. Cos says:

        deffinitely agree with you about the variety of compounds…I’m half expecting to see a bloke from Kwik-Fit next time a car rolls into the pits for a tyre change!!

      3. Elie says:

        Kay- sorry but that’s just wrong. Regardless of what Pirelli say in the press dont you think the FIA, teams and the rights holders have a say in how the sport is run??
        Im no fan of Pirelli or this tyre derived engineering game- but at the end of the day if the controlling parties didn’t want it- it wouldn’t happen.

        I don’t think any tyre manufacturer wants to spend millions to change the compounds every year- it would be much easier for them to just use the 2012 again in 2013- don’t you think- same for the teams. But somebody else make that decision and it sure as hell ain’t Paul Hembry.

      4. Kay says:

        Just to add to my previous post:

        Back in 2009 / 10, Pirelli said they wanted 18″ rims if FIA / teams / Bernie want to select them as F1 tyre supplier and made it part of the agenda. Last week Pirelli came out saying teams have to request for 18″.

        Just shows how Pirelli can simply play with and bend the facts and words they said. Hence I don’t trust Pirelli or Paul Hembery about the stuff they say to the media. So linking that to tyre spectacle, excitement and stuff, I call that a load of bulls and they just seem to me incompetent in making a durable tyre.

      5. Martin says:

        You’re obviously giving Pirelli no credit whatsoever. Which is your choice. Considering Bridgestone and Michelin were able to enter F1 and be competitive immediately, to suggest Pirelli that could not make tyres a decade later that dealt with cars with less power and marginally more downforce last without failure in a non competitive situation as a sole supplier is a left field engineering judgement.

        The 18 inch wheels would be a major change for the teams. The suspension would have to do much more work rather than the tyres. This change would impact on how the floor interacts with the track surface. The probably larger diameter of the tyres would increase drag and have an aerodynamic effect on wing design and also brake cooling if the brakes stayed the same diameter. The FIA may be unwilling to increase the brake size given the rotor thickness is already limited.

      6. Kay says:

        Martin, I’ll give credits where it’s due, and Pirelli don’t deserve any in my honest opinion, unless Pirelli can prove otherwise.

        You stated the changes 18″ wheels would make, which are pretty obvious. However, you still failed to explain the way Pirelli just bend the facts and stuff they said as they wished. This alone clearly makes the untrustworthy in the things they said about they want ‘excitement’ or ‘spectacle’. It’s just too easy for them to give a false story for the media to publish to hide their true inability in making good tyres.

      7. Quade says:

        Its hard to see what credit is due to Pirelli. The FIA didn’t caution them for producing the more stable tyres that led to the thrilling climax that the second half of the 2012 season turned out to be, so why are they pushing the envelope?

        Indeed, the damage this witches brew of tyres is doing to F1 fairly jumps at you if we compare the first and second halves of the 2012 season. While the tyre durability in the second half provided edge of the seat racing, the first half threw grossly affected the quality of F1 by throwing up one-trick ponies. A great example is Perez, magnificent at tyre whispering, but who can barely overtake a stationery car without crashing or flying off the road. The deception of the first half of 2012, even deceived a crack engineering outfit like McLaren into hiring Perez (despite Ferarri turning their nose up at him). The tyre situation has produced an event thats as weird as if McLaren had employed the likes of Takuma Sato. But thats todays F1, thanks to Pirelli.

        Outside some Alice in Wonderland style fable, it would be a real stretch for anyone to claim to have won a race by being the slowest and dullest racer. Except I’m missing something, races are meant to throw up the fastest and most talented drivers. We want to see those who can overtake on a twopence or lap a second faster than everyone else… But Pirelli has to interfere to seem relevant or remind us that they exist, as if we don’t already acknowledge the obvious fact.

        I’m really convinced that they are doing F1 a disservice on many levels.

    4. JCA says:

      Some truly high deg tyres would be welcome at Monaco.

    5. KRB says:

      I just don’t want to see an abundance of marbles off-line, which inhibits any following driver attempting to pass. Surely we don’t want that. And also don’t like how the tires will degrade far faster for a close-following car. We want cars to attack, not hang back.

    6. Simple says:

      If you read the article, it explains the softs are suffering because Jerez has a very abrasive surface.. Paul Hembry has been quoted elsewhere that if its not resurfaced by next year, there’s no point testing there because you can’t gather any data on the tyres that will have application on a normal race track.

      1. James Allen says:

        He says that the macro roughness (the large stone content) is not representative of the other tracks in F1, so for that reason it is not a useful test venue.

        That’s the point really

  11. DLC says:

    A glimpse into the terrible, terrible future.

    2013:
    1)Ferrari has the fastest car.
    2)But unexpectedly, Alonso struggles and Massa outperforms him.
    3)Vettel(in a good car)&Massa(in the fastest car) fight for the title. In the meantime, Alonso is torn apart by Italian papers.
    4) The last race of 2013. Vettel crashes, but somehow miraculously takes his fourth WDC(because obviously he’s sold his soul to the devil).
    5)Giving in to Italian papers’ pressure, thanks to a contract clause(about Alonso having to win a WDC for Ferrari within 4 years), Ferrari kicks him out.
    6)With a huge scandal,Vettel leaves Red Bull and his red dream finally comes true.

    Year 2025 – There’s a new statue of a giant finger at Maranello. And a number 10 on it.

    No joke. You heard it here first.

    1. graham says:

      more likely perez wins chapionship but has problems with button and mr.Dennis. Year 2025 – There’s a new statue of a giant sombrero mexicano at Maranello.

    2. Mon Pen says:

      Er. Yes ok. *Backs slowly out of room* Some people need to send less time locked in weird fantasies and more time going out.

    3. Nick Hipkin says:

      oh dear….

    4. Joe_Miami says:

      I have another version.

      2013:
      1) Ferrari has again the 3rd or 4th fastest car.
      2) Alnso still manages to be on top of the ranks until the last few races.
      3) Alonso keeps outperforming Massa by 0.3 to 0.6 seconds on average (depending on the ciurcuit)

      2035 After papers are declassified, a miracle happens and someone finally answers the question no one has ever had the guts to talk about on a British site: why did the TR leave almost 20 seconds of gap after the SC was deployed on the last 2012 race???

      THAT would be a miracle my friend. A real one.

    5. Richard says:

      Where exactly did you read this about Alonso having to win a WDC within four years of running with Ferrari? Even if he won’t win it this year, I doubt Ferrari will kick him out, it wasn’t his fault to lose two titles in the past three years.

      1. gotardo says:

        Well….. in 2010 Alonso may have looked to lose the WDC at the last race because of that ridiculous strategic call, yet all the points made or lost on every race in the season matter equal.
        Alonso did at least 3 costly mistakes during the season, which lost him at least 30 points.
        Jumping the start at the Chinese GP was one of them, for example.

      2. Aditya says:

        Ya, and Vettel was spic-and-span the whole season wasn’t he? obviously, he gifted his front wing to Webber in silverstone, and Mark crashed into him in Turkey, and Jenson in Spa, right?
        IMO, he was at most the third most deserving driver to win the WDC in ’10

    6. Carlo_Carrera says:

      LOL, that is good.

    7. Simmo says:

      Seriously?

    8. Random 79 says:

      It’s true, but what he doesn’t tell you is that in 2097 Alonso’s cyborg descendents send a machine back in time to 1988 on a do or die mission to terminate Vettel’s mother, Sarah Vettel, in the process spawning two excellent movies and two not so good sequels.

      Is joke. You cringed here first.

      1. Basil says:

        lol Good one!

      2. Brad says:

        lol Random!

      3. Wade Parmino says:

        Legend.

      4. Angelina says:

        @Random 79
        Vettel’s mother is called Heiki Vettel and not Sarah. Sarah Sprater is Seb Vettel’s his to be mom in law (Seb’s gf’s mom).

        Btw Seb’s mom has 4 kids, 2 daughters, 2 sons.
        Seb oldest sister is a doctor, 2nd sis is not impressive, Seb is 3rd and I don’t think Seb’s younger bro will be impressive.
        So I liked ur analogy “the process spawning two excellent movies and two not so good sequels”

      5. Random 79 says:

        @Angelina

        Glad to see that you liked the analogy, but Sarah Vettel was a reference to Sarah Connor. I had no idea what Seb’s Mum’s name was and I had no inclination to find out.

        As a wise man once said, never let the facts get in the way of a good story.

      6. Enzo says:

        @Angelina,
        “2nd sis is not impressive, Seb is 3rd and I don’t think Seb’s younger bro will be impressive”

        ??????? do tell.

    9. Ahmed says:

      Massa is primed to have one of his best years ever. He has his confidence back, the car seems to his liking, and he will give Alonso a good run this year. The only thing that will let him down, is Ferrari’s blatent strategy calls which always sacrifice Massa’s race for the glory of Alonso.
      Either making him stay out way too long to cover off rivals, or pitting him early, or breaking gear box seals to improve Alonso’s grid position. Let him race, and if he’s way off the points, then maybe use him as Ferrari’s sacrificial lamb.
      Everyone knows Massa is a confidence driver, he ended last year on a high, outperforming Alonso in the last 4 races of the year, and has started this years testing off on the front foot.
      Ferrari, dont ruin it…

      1. Random 79 says:

        I don’t know whether or not Massa will be faster than Alonso this year, but if he is I guarantee fireworks.

        By rights, if Massa does happen to end up leading the championship then they’ll have to support him – anything else would be blatant hypocrisy – but if I were Ferrari I’d be more than a little nervous about how Alonso might react.

        For the record I’m not anti-Alonso; I wish them both well, but I would love to see Massa win.

      2. Tim says:

        By rights, if Massa does happen to end up leading the championship then they’ll have to support him – anything else would be blatant hypocrisy…..
        You are right it would be hypocritical.
        However, Ferrari have previous history in such matters. Remember when MSC broke his leg which left Eddie Irvine as team leader. The last race of the season and Eddie still in with a shout of WDC – it didn’t appear (from an outside observers view) that Ferrari were trying as hard as they could to secure the WDC. Certainly not the sort of ‘moving mountains’ effort that would have been evident had it been MSC fighting for the title.

        I wouldn’t hold your breath!

      3. Random 79 says:

        Believe me Tim, I’m not…

      4. Mocho_Pikuain says:

        Ferrari always start the season giving Massa and Alonso equal treatment, the thing is Alonso alwatys destroys Massa, and by mid season he is in the hunt while massa is nowhere.

        And please people, stop that rubish about Massa outperforming Alonso at the end of 2012, Alonso’s car setups with new pieces were the problem, not Alonso himself, that said by Pat Fry.

      5. Anne says:

        Massa had his chances. 2007 and 2008. In 2007 he couldn´t beat his team mate and in 2008 he wasn´t capable win enough points to go with confortable lead to the Brazil race. Some people said that Timo Glock decided the outcome of that race.To some degree it could be true but the fact remains that Hamilton also went to Brazil with chances of his own.Alonso didn´t play a role in Ferrari at that time.

        Now Ferrari´s challenge is to beat RB and Vettel. I don´t think Massa is the best man to accomplish that

      6. KT says:

        @Ahmed I agree, hopefully Massa will keep up the form he showed at the end of last season, but as a Massa fan, I worry that Ferrari won’t let him race Alonso and will hinder his races to benefit Alonso. I really hope they don’t as his confidence is just starting to increase again and he’s starting to perform like he did in 2008 again. They should let him race Alonso at the start of the season before they screw him over and ruin his confidence just because Alonso can’t handle the pressure of his teammate being competitive and potentially beating him.

    10. KRB says:

      You ruined it with the “no joke” bit at the end!! A giant finger amusement ride at Ferrari World in Abu Dhabi as well.

    11. Joe says:

      Impossible. If by 2025 Vettel has 10 championships with Ferrari after starting in 2014 with 4xWDC it means he only got 6xWDC in 11 years with Ferrari. Not possible, Vettel was fired from Ferrari too before 2025.

      Massa struggling against Alonso and therefore causing “fireworks” at Ferrari has been the lost dream of many since 2009. It is not going to happen, sorry.

      1. Angelina says:

        @Joe
        Vettel might have chosen to quit F1 b4 2025.

      2. Random 79 says:

        You’re probably right, but time will tell.

      3. Random 79 says:

        Angelina’s right:

        DLC said that in 2025 the would be a giant finger in Maranello. That doesn’t mean that Vettel drove for Ferrari until 2024, it means that Vettel drove for them for six years before retiring at the end of 2019. After that it took them four and a half years to build the finger, and then another six months to paint the 10 on it.

      4. Joe says:

        If so, it is not clear why it would take so much time to build.

        I guess building it on top of one of Neweys tallest sky scrapers at Maranello will make things that complicated

      5. Random 79 says:

        It’s quite clear:

        Early estimates put the construction time at eight months and amazingly they finished on target, but Vettel wasn’t happy with the result.

        In the end they had to go back to the drawing board six or seven times in order to get the giant finger *just* right.

        Sounds silly, but then again you don’t argue with a ten times consecutive world champion.

    12. Kay says:

      I think Hollywood needs you.

      Otherwise, I’m happy to watch how the F1 cirus progress as they go along.

    13. Random 79 says:

      Bad new DLC:

      Vettel has just been told that Ferrari don’t want him.

      http://www.formula1.com/news/interviews/2013/2/14259.html, third to last photo.

      (Yes, I made that up, couldn’t resist :))

  12. Tov says:

    I was wondering what Kimi was doing all day. He mostly stayed in pits.
    Any insight on that?

    1. Chris Normal says:

      As far as I can tell they were working on his seat fitment. Could be similar to Monaco practice when he didn’t go out because he didn’t like the steering system.

    2. BlueRacer says:

      Don’t worry, “he knows what he is doing” :D

      Jokes aside, I wondered about that too. Forty laps in a day look a bit too few but the article didn’t say anything specific about it.

      1. Sasidharan says:

        James, I think this website needs a [Like] button near the [Reply] link
        :)

    3. Jonathan Lodge says:

      it must have been the unexpected consequence of his new “mute” button…

    4. AlexD says:

      he enjoyed his icecream

      1. Tov says:

        Well in that case everything is clear :D

    5. Antti says:

      Lotus were testing different exhaust packages, and changing them takes time.

      1. Ohm says:

        Do you have a source for this?

      2. Ohm says:

        Ahh cheers Antti :)

    6. Kay says:

      Leave him alone, he knows what he’s doing.

      :P

    7. Elie says:

      Lotus had some adjustments to the seats and seat belt repositioning for Kimi.They also had some minor electrical issues to check out . There was some talk about clutch also, but I think all this stuff is just regular 1st test shake down business.

  13. graham says:

    The Ferrari looked good today and good for them , hamilton will find that easy to beat though. Cant help but think that there is a big story behind Alonso not being there. Last yaer the team had some bonding in Lanzarote(my home) and this year he hides away on his own, not wanting to drive and help improve his car. Could you imagine Vettel doing thht?

    1. grat says:

      Jerez is basically a shakedown for the cars– run the cars and see what breaks. Massa and Pedro de la Rosa can do that. The surface is (apparently) abysmal, and the Jerez times mean very little.

      So Alonso went off training. Not completely unreasonable for someone who really, really, really can’t stand the fact that Vettel’s got more championships than he does. ;)

    2. KRB says:

      Yeah, neither Vettel nor Hamilton could do that w/o coming off as arrogant.

    3. Kay says:

      Looks like it’s only you making a big story out of it.

      As mentioned by various readers in James’ articles, the first test or two are only for checking whether things are working correctly. It’s only the later tests that count. Massa can handle that task alright.

      1. James Allen says:

        It looks to me like they have done the right thing this week.

        Massa usually does the first runs, if you look back. Alonso is interested in the direction for the season, when new stuff comes on in later tests, but this week Ferrari has been able to put development parts on from as early as Day 2. That is positive

      2. Rockie says:

        Ok so James does that infer Alonso does not send the team in the right direction by being at the first test or am I missing something?

      3. James Allen says:

        No, you can’t draw such absolute conclusions

        He clearly feels he wants his six days in the car weighted towards the later tests when evaluation of definitive specs is the key task

        There are 8 days left of testing and ALO will FI six of them

  14. Goob says:

    That’s one funny headline…

    Massa lets rip… LOL.

    Too many beans and a tight harness, eh?

    1. Random 79 says:

      Tomorrows headline:

      ‘Teams protest Ferrari’s secret blown diffuser’

      1. IP says:

        champagne comedy

      2. Jordan says:

        Breaking news, Pedro de La Rosa’s rear in flames.

      3. Random 79 says:

        I read that one too. Apparently he made the mistake of choosing the chili beans.

  15. Lee Gilbert says:

    James – you said:

    “Rosberg’s time was set on the first lap of a 16 lap run in the Mercedes. He will have had 60 kilos of fuel on board at the time, which is 40 kilos more (equivalent to around 1.1 seconds of lap time) than Massa’s fastest timed lap.”

    So that means the Merc is very fast on single lap / short distances then. 0.1 secs faster than the Ferrari (Long runs aside)

    1. JCA says:

      Massa had at least 20kg, and Rosberg at least 60kg. Important distinction.

  16. Thomas Conway says:

    James, Mercedes ran their new FW today, is there any news on the “second generation Coanda exhaust” that Ross Brawn was referring to earlier this week?

  17. Onko says:

    Mr Allen,Sir I thank you for presenting the insight from the front of the F1 grid to the rear.However I noted some contributers on J.A
    site, like the first reply of yesterday,it seems he has not realise as yet that the only
    site worth reading is J.A F1 the rest is just ordinary, Sir, could you please enlight if you
    could I understand Ferrari is running the electrical system ( TAG 120 )that would be the standard euipment on all two seater from 2014
    was wondering is McLaren System no longer applicable.The Perfectionist( Pat Fry )said he
    will sleep better only when he has the quickest
    car on the grid.
    Do you feel he is at the point in achieving that,needless of me to say I am an very much
    addmirer of a great man Enzo Ferrari through his philosophy in life help me achieve a comfortable living lately.

      1. Random 79 says:

        Two seaters in 2014? Hmmm…

        Maybe it will be like the WRC. All the drivers will have co-drivers saying things like ‘easy left…straight on for a bit…hard left…watch out for the squirrel…well done mate…easy right…’

        Well, all the drivers except for Raikkonen.

        He knows what he’s doing.

    1. Basil says:

      Good comment!

  18. zerof50 says:

    WOOOO HOOOO FLY LITTLE FILIPE FLY….

  19. Chrisg says:

    James

    Love you articles on testing, but would it be possible to have a little more detail on the little teams, Caterham and Marussia hardly get a mention, but they are part of the news

    Cheers for the good work though

  20. Darren W says:

    Loving these extra bits of technical analysis by Mark. They really add a whole new level of insight and enjoyment of the testing process.

  21. Random 79 says:

    Now being serious:

    I know it’s only a test and the times don’t really mean anything, but it’s still damn good to see Massa on top all the same. I really hope he can keep the form he has rediscovered for the rest of the year and even win a race or two.

    1. Kay says:

      +1

      Not a fan of Massa here but yes, it is very good to see him back on top of his game! :)

  22. Horno says:

    Hahaha, I truely feel the desire to say:
    “Told ya so..”

    Everybody is talking about the McLaren, pffff..

    1. Horno says:

      Ps.
      Ferrari is building a ramp exhaust system like Red Bull..
      Step by step, the only difference is that the F138 is much smaller in the rear, with potentialy more room to collect air under the ramp..

    2. tom in adelaide says:

      Right. We’d best hand out the trophies now then huh?

      1. Horno says:

        No, of course not.. but everybody was talking over the Mclaren..
        James Allen did nog even mention Ferrari after the first practice..

  23. Tornillo Amarillo says:

    So Mercedes today was fast & reliably, but with a severe drop off in performance as McLaren in the long runs at this stage…

    Nice article.

    1. James Allen says:

      Early days, but in terms of looking for some patterns to watch more closely in later tests.

  24. Alberto Martínez says:

    James,

    When you said Massa did his run with arond 20 kilos and Rosberg with 60 of fuel onboard, I suppose that you´re assuming these amounts as the minimun weight (in theory nobody knows the amounts of fuel each team load). Am I right?

    1. James Allen says:

      No, but that is what is common practice for runs of that sort.

      1. Allwyn says:

        I think what Alberto means is, Massa and Rosberg would have carried a ‘minimum’ of 20 and 60 kgs respectively.

      2. Alberto Martínez says:

        In that case, the Mercedes with Medium tyre would be slightly faster than the Ferrari with Soft tyre. So the W04 with soft tyre would be around 1s faster the Ferrari and I don´t think that could be possible.

        My impression is that Ferrari had to run quite more than 20 kilos, otherwise the Mercedes is going to be a really fast car.

  25. Yak says:

    Any word of Lotus actually running their passive DRS (or whatever one might want to call it) yet?

  26. Chris NZ says:

    Thanks for your work James.

    Going to be a close season again I reckon.

    Does anyone have a good link to a breakdown of the 2014 regulations changes quite detailed? Is the FIA the best place to check it out

    1. James Allen says:

      Yes, go to FIA website, click Regulations, then F1 World Championship, then Tech Regs or Sporting Regs

  27. Vipin says:

    I believe Ferrari can come back as they had their glorious years in F1.

    And win many championships with Fernando Alonso.

  28. Anup Kadam says:

    Hi James,
    Any updates on Ferrari wind tunnel issue. Is the track data matching the wind tunnel of Toyota Cologne…

    1. James Allen says:

      Sounds like correlation is good.

      Positive noises from Ferrari this week

  29. Val from montreal says:

    So many hearts will be broken this year , again …. Too much Ferrari talk … Too much Mercedes talk …. Not enough Reb Bull talk …..Not enough Sebastian Vettel talk … Just finished watching the “Red Bull 2005-2012 Story” and I’m confident more championships are on their way ….Go Vettel your the best !!

  30. Elie says:

    Much to my dislike- I think the Ferrari will definitely be the car to watch this year. I think the end of last year saw the car come on strong and they have a full year under their belt on the pull rod front suspension whereas Mclaren are starting this year with it. With better aero balance at the rear Ferrari will have a very refined and reliable package that is starting relatively quick already.Im still wanting Lotus to win and Mercedes to do very well and there is small matter of a finger boy in a fizzy drinks car as well as that other Mercedes powered car..

  31. RHUAIRI MACLEOD says:

    [mod]
    Dear James – To quote from a thread from 2011 -Best wishes, Rhuairi MacLeod

    – cosito106-27-2011, 09:25 AM
    I have not kept track of the number of times that Massa’s pit stops have been compromised . I get the feeling that the number of errors on Felipe’s pit stops are far more than Alonso’s and Kimi ‘s . It has been postulated in the past that Ferrari “wears down drivers ” by giving better cars to the the their “favorite ” drivers and to err on pit stops on the non performing drivers . It is perhaps a way to apply emotional pressure. I like the opinion of the members of this forum . thank you

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