McLaren’s Fernando Alonso was fastest on the first day of the fourth two day test at Silverstone. The Spaniard was over a second faster than Mercedes driver Esteban Ocon and over four seconds faster than the Williams of Alex Lynn.
Alonso set his time during the morning session before the rain came during the lunch hour with many teams not running until mid-afternoon. The Spaniard was the most productive driver completing a 123 laps while setting the fastest lap.
Alonso posted on Instagram “105 laps. 618 km. best time of the day. 1.31,290 morning continues the work (Stoffel Vandoorne) will continue the work at the test and myself in the simulator. Non stop. Happy.”
Ocon was 1.5 seconds down in the Mercedes with Lynn 3.1 seconds down on Alonso’s fastest time. There was only one red flag which was caused by a wooden pole falling for the roof.
Manor’s Pascal Wehrlein was driving the 2014 Mercedes doing important tyre development work for Pirelli. However, the German didn’t run in the afternoon session. Like Wehrlein Russian Nikita Mazepin who was driving for Force India didn’t go out in the afternoon.
Red Bull test the Ferrari approved halo device but have announced they plans to vote against its introduction for 2017. Ferrari first ran the halo in pre-season testing, with an updated version debuted on Sebastian Vettel’s car in practice ahead of the British Grand Prix last Friday.
Team Principal Christian Horner told Autosport “It’s an inelegant solution to the problem it is trying to deal with. I would prefer there to be more research time taken to do the job properly rather than rushing something through that may have other consequences.
“I’m not a big fan of the halo and the limitations that it has. I certainly wouldn’t vote in favour at the moment.”
Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz was sixth fastest and the third most productive driver doing 91 laps ahead of Haas’s Santino Ferrucci, Wehrlein, Manor’s Rio Haryanto, Renault’s Sergey Sirokin and Red Bull’s Pierre Gasly.
The 20-year-old Frenchman only managed seven laps in the morning as Red Bull was forced to replace some cabling inside the car, but managed another 40 in the afternoon.
The afternoon running was wet, ensuring the times from the morning remained unbeaten.
Tomorrow changes will be Kimi Raikkonen will be testing for Ferrari, Jolyon Palmer for Renault, Jordan King for Manor with Williams not confirming who is running for them. Sauber are not running because of financial issues