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McLaren endure woeful day of testing

6 martie 2018 23:28

McLaren's outlook for the 2018 Formula One season appears bleak after a miserable day of testing on Tuesday which saw the car endure three mechanical failures.

Having battled some minor problems in the opening test, during which Fernando Alonso spun out, the team's follow-up outing in Barcelona began in even worse fashion.

Stoffel Vandoorne managed only 38 laps on day one as the car was halted three times, breaking down twice inside the first two hours with a battery problem and again in the afternoon after losing hydraulic pressure.

However, racing director Eric Boullier tried to put a brave face on things.

"We aren't overly concerned about the issues that we've faced," he said.

"It's obviously not the productive day we had planned, but the problems are the types of niggles that we almost hope and expect to face during testing, in order to prepare us properly for the season ahead.

"We are here to test, and today is what sometimes happens in testing. It's not ideal, and we would have liked more track time, but we're working on it, we're learning from it."

Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel was quickest on the day, the best of his 171 laps coming in at one minute 20.396 seconds.

Reigning champion Lewis Hamilton got 91 laps under his belt, with Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas proving slightly quicker in the stand-out lap of the 86 he completed. 

The Briton said: "It's been a good day. We've got through everything we needed and put good mileage on the car – it's been productive.

"The biggest challenge we faced was to get the tyres working properly on this new track surface. The medium tyre was difficult to get working; the soft tyre is better for warm-up, but suffered with degradation. But we are learning all the time.

"Overall it's been a good start to the second test although there is not a whole lot to say at this moment. We have not worked too much on fine-tuning the set-up as we're mostly still gathering information.

"In the next couple of days, once we get into the long-runs and some shorter qualifying-style runs, we will get a better idea of where the car is."

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