Scuderia Ferrari has completed the first three days of pre-season testing at Spain’s Barcelona-Catalunya Circuit. The F1-75 completed a total of 439 laps, or 2052 kilometres, the most of any of the cars on track, with Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz both driving on all days.
Morning. Charles got the ball rolling on the final day and, as on the previous ones, he ran the C2 and C3 compound tyres. The work involved evaluating the handling of the car in different set-up configurations. This morning’s four hours of track time was red flagged no fewer than five times when cars stopped out on track. The Monegasque completed 44 laps, equivalent to 206 kilometres and so over three days, Leclerc did 203 laps (949 km).
Afternoon. Carlos took over after the lunch break. The Spaniard ran wet and intermediate tyres, as the track had been artificially watered. Once the track dried, he then switched to the C2, C3 and C4 dry tyres. He did 92 laps, or 430 kilometres, which brought his three day total to 236 laps (1103 km).
Next stop Bahrain. The Scuderia now returns to Maranello to assess the large amount of data it has acquired in order to prepare for the second and last pre-season test at the Sakhir circuit, from 10 to 12 March. The following week, things start to get serious, when the same venue hosts the opening round of the 2022 season, the Bahrain Grand Prix.
Laurent Mekies Racing Director
Overall, this has been a solid test session for us as we completed many laps. We got through most of our programme, which was based around three key elements: firstly to get an initial read on reliability, hence our primary focus on the number of laps completed; secondly to map several parameters of our car, from aero performance to tyre performance, to vehicle dynamics performance. We have a long list of scans to work through and we got through a fair number of them over these three days.
Last but not least, it was important to give our drivers sufficient laps to familiarise themselves with what is a completely new car. It calls for a different driving style and a different approach to the various racing conditions. We did this with both drivers, sharing the workload across the three days. It was also good for the race team to be back at the track. For them, it was a useful warm-up before what will be a long and intense season, getting used to procedures such as the pit stops and, for the various crews that make up the team, to all be back working together again and interacting well with our drivers.
We still have a lot of work ahead of us and we can expect an intense fight, so everyone has many items on their job list now. Our thanks must go to everyone back at the factory, who have worked so hard over the past few months to ensure we arrived at the race track well prepared. It’s only the first step of a long year, when we intend to push very hard, working all together.