Valtteri Bottas Tops First Pre-Season Test

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Valtteri Bottas has topped the last day of the first pre-season test at the Circuit de Catalunya, Barcelona on a day which saw three teams encounter trouble. 

Bottas set a stunning lap time of 1m 15.732 midway through the morning session on the C5 compound, which wasn’t bettered throughout the remainder of the day as Mercedes teammate – Lewis Hamilton got closest with a 1m 16.516 on the same compound.

Renault’s Esteban Ocon was a further 0.486s behind Hamilton and 0.236s clear of Racing Point’s Lance Stroll in fourth, who bettered his teammate – Sergio Perez’s best lap time from yesterday by 0.009s with a 1m 17.338 .

Daniil Kvyat rounded out the top five in his Alpha Tauri ahead of Alfa Romeo’s Antonio Giovinazzi, who was ahead of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and Alex Albon. 

McLaren meanwhile focused on their own individual programmes for both Carlos Sainz and Lando Norris, who ended the day in 11th and 14th respectively.


Red Flag Woes

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Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel brought out the first red flag of the day when he stopped at Turn 12 mid-morning with an electrical issue, which necessitated a power unit change ahead of further investigations at Maranello and no further running until after lunch. 

Nicholas Latifi then brought out a second red flag just a hour after the session resumed, pulling over on the start-finish straight with a power unit issue in his Williams car, which meant that he missed the majority of afternoon running as the power unit was replaced.

Haas enjoyed a solid morning of running with Romain Grosjean before handing over to Kevin Magnussen, who spun at Turn Seven after picking up a right rear puncture to curtail his afternoon running after just four laps. 

Daniel Ricciardo brought out the final red flag of the first test with 75 minutes left when he made a precautionary stop at Turn Eight with a power unit issue, before getting back out after quick work back in the garage. 

Teams now take a four day break to analyse data and make any necessary improvements, before the second three day test begins on Wednesday ahead of the season opener in Melbourne across the weekend of 13-15 March.


Full Results for Day Three of 2020 F1 Pre-Season Testing:

  1. Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes) – 1m 15.732 (65 laps)
  2. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) – 1m 16.516 (73 laps)
  3. Esteban Ocon (Renault) – 1m 17.102 (76 laps)
  4. Lance Stroll (Racing Point) – 1m 17.338 (116 laps)
  5. Daniil Kvyat (Alpha Tauri) – 1m 17.427 (62 laps)
  6. Antonio Giovinazzi (Alfa Romeo) – 1m 17.469 (152 laps)
  7. Daniel Ricciardo (Renault) – 1m 17.574 (93 laps)
  8. Max Verstappen (Red Bull) – 1m 17.636 (86 laps)
  9. Pierre Gasly (Alpha Tauri) – 1m 17.783 (59 laps)
  10. Alex Albon (Red Bull) – 1m 18.154 (83 laps)
  11. Carlos Sainz (McLaren) – 1m 18.274 (76 laps)
  12. Romain Grosjean – 1m 18.380 (48 laps)
  13. Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari) – 1m 18.384 (100 laps)
  14. Lando Norris (McLaren) – 1m 18.477 (49 laps)
  15. Nicholas Latifi (Williams) – 1m 19.004 (72 laps)
  16. Kevin Magnussen (Haas) – 1m 19.709 (4 laps) 

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