Date:Monday March 5 2012
The second test in Barcelona ended over the weekend and with it the final true days of testing for the teams.
The likes of Marussia have done some testing today (Monday) at Silverstone, while who knows what HRT have planned, but the chequered flag has waved on the official winter testing programmes.
So what have we learned? Well pretty much nothing, other than what the cars actually look like.
If the time sheets are to be believed Kimi Raikkonen and Lotus will be going head-to-head with Sergio Perez and Sauber for the 2012 Formula One World Championship as they were the two drivers to head the combined times after four days of testing.
Without Marussia and HRT in Barcelona, who would be the slowest over the four days? Oh that will be defending double F1 World Champion Sebastian Vettel in the Red Bull, completing 108 laps or 310 miles around the Catalunya circuit.
He was a full 1.331 seconds slower than Raikkonen's Lotus, but its likely that Vettel was completing long heavy fuel load stints, while Raikkonen may well have been doing testing to set up qualifying settings.
Overall it was a pretty mixed bag, Jenson Button's McLaren was third quickest, while Fernando Alonso's Ferrari was fifth, with Mark Webber in the quickest Red Bull in fourteenth and the Mercedes' of Rosberg and Schumacher sixteenth and seventeenth.
So what if anything have we learned?
Despite what the time sheets say, Ferrari were pretty pessimistic about their performance, highlighting just how worthless the time sheets actually are!
They have already stated that they are unlikely to be competitive enough to challenge for the podium in Australia and will be testing new parts, during the opening race of the F1 season.
'I am disappointed by our performance level at the moment, I think we've got a lot of work to do.' Ferrari technical chief Pat Fry told Autosport Magazine.
'The change we made last week to the exhaust position has put us a little bit on the back foot and we're trying to optimise to that. We've obviously still got a lot of work going on at the factory and we'll have new bits to test in Melbourne.'
There have been mixed messages coming out of Red Bull Racing. Obviously billed as the team to beat, Vettel has been quoted as not being completely happy with how things have gone for the team.
They've already ran an updated package, which was introduced over this final test, but reliability issues with the gear box, prevented them from completing the amount of runs that their rivals could achieve.
But that doesn't appear to be much of concern for Red Bull Racing boss Christian Horner: 'I think it has been constructive. Looking back to 12 months ago when we were faced with a lot of KERS issues and so on, I think it has been a positive winter testing period.
'I don't think there is anything too different from the last couple of years. Certainly last year was tougher because KERS was a bigger issue and we ended up not running at the first race, but 12 months on KERS has hardly been mentioned this year.'
Mercedes team boss Ross Brawn was another happy team principal after testing, believing that the latest Mercedes was indeed an improvement on its predecessor: Some of the fundamentals are good, the cooling is good, the systems are working well and it means that all of our engineers can focus on finding performance from the very beginning.
'Whereas last year there was a lot of resource soaked up fixing problems with the car, so we have certainly moved a long way in 12 months.
But perhaps it was McLaren who left Barcelona the happiest? Their car has ran well throughout testing and over the final few days, like Red Bull, they introduced a new upgrade package in the form of aerodynamic upgrades.
But just like Red Bull, McLaren were not immune to technical issues and a hydraulic problem prevented Jenson Button from completing his full running programme.
'Immediately when we put the upgrades on it felt much better. There were some areas where we were lacking in the car, but we knew it would become better when we put the updates on.' Button said at the end of his testing stint on Saturday, 'It's great the upgrade we got today, but we weren't able to progress with it and get a perfect set-up. Hopefully tomorrow Lewis can have a nice, clean day and we can progress with it because there's still more to come. The feeling is positive though.'
Hamilton went on to complete 115 laps on Sunday and while he may have only sat sixth on the time sheets, he was completing race simulations and some analysts like Jamie O'Leary of Autosport Magazine, believes that Hamilton's laps were looking very strong overall.
So while others may have stolen the headlines, it looks like McLaren could be looking good heading into the final couple of weeks of the winter before the lights go out in Australia.
Date:Monday March 5 2012
2015 - Russian GP - FP2 (Friday October 9 2015)
2015 - Russian GP - FP1 (Friday October 9 2015)
Blog: Sochi Preview (Thursday October 8 2015)
Ecclestone expects F1 to be sold (Wednesday October 7 2015)
Can Mercedes wrap up constructors title in Russia? (Tuesday October 6 2015)
Blog: How reliability reduces F1ís records (Monday October 5 2015)
2015 Formula One Prediction Competition - Round 15 (Monday October 5 2015)
Who will win in Russia? (Monday October 5 2015)
F1 teams pushing to dump Pirelli for Michelin? (Friday October 2 2015)
Dennis hits out at McLaren Honda critics (Friday October 2 2015)
Manor secure Mercedes power for 2016 (Thursday October 1 2015)
Button to stay at McLaren in 2016 (Thursday October 1 2015)
Grosjean to join Haas in 2016 (Thursday October 1 2015)
Letter of intent signed for Lotus buy-out (Tuesday September 29 2015)
Where were Mercedes in Japan? (Monday September 28 2015)
Blog: Japanese GP Report (Sunday September 27 2015)
2015 - Japan GP - Race (Sunday September 27 2015)
Blog: Suzuka Qualifying (Saturday September 26 2015)
2015 - Japan GP - Qualifying (Saturday September 26 2015)
2015 - Japan GP- FP3 (Saturday September 26 2015)
2015 - Japan GP - FP2 (Friday September 25 2015)
2015 - Japan GP - FP1 (Friday September 25 2015)
Perez to stay with Force India (Thursday September 24 2015)
Blog: Suzuka Preview (Thursday September 24 2015)
McLaren ready for financial shortfall (Wednesday September 23 2015)
Button expected to announce retirement (Wednesday September 23 2015)
It's Ferrari or Bust for Red Bull Racing (Wednesday September 23 2015)
Maldonado to stay, Grosjean to leave? (Tuesday September 22 2015)
2015 Formula One Prediction Competition - Round 14 (Monday September 21 2015)
Who will win in Japan? (Monday September 21 2015)
Blog: Singapore GP Report (Monday September 21 2015)
2015 - Singapore GP - Race (Sunday September 20 2015)
Blog: Singapore Qualifying (Sunday September 20 2015)
2015 - Singapore GP - Qualifying (Sunday September 20 2015)
2015- Singapore GP - FP3 (Sunday September 20 2015)
2015 - Singapore - FP2 (Friday September 18 2015)
2015 - Singapore GP - FP1 (Friday September 18 2015)
Rosberg will keep believing (Friday September 18 2015)
Merhi & Rossi to share Manor Marussia seat (Thursday September 17 2015)
Another new deal for Melbourne (Thursday September 17 2015)
It's over says Renault (Thursday September 17 2015)
Blog: Singapore Preview (Wednesday September 16 2015)
2015 Formula One Prediction Competition - Round 13 (Wednesday September 16 2015)
Who will win in Singpore? (Wednesday September 16 2015)
Williams may not take Mercedes upgrade (Tuesday September 15 2015)
Lotus to drop into administration on Friday? (Monday September 14 2015)
Big hopes for Ferrari in 2016 (Friday September 11 2015)
Button's wait nearly over? (Thursday September 10 2015)
Webber slams pay drivers (Wednesday September 9 2015)
Mercedes board reject supplying Red Bull engines (Tuesday September 8 2015)
Blog: Italian GP Report (Tuesday September 8 2015)
Disqualifying Merc would have been the easy call (Monday September 7 2015)
Mercedes cleared - Italian GP result stands (Sunday September 6 2015)
Mercedes under investigation following Italian GP (Sunday September 6 2015)
2015 - Italian Grand Prix - Race (Sunday September 6 2015)
Blog: Monza Qualifying (Sunday September 6 2015)
2015 - Italian Grand Prix - Qualifying (Saturday September 5 2015)
2015 - Italian Grand Prix - FP3 (Saturday September 5 2015)
2015 - Italian Grand Prix - FP2 (Friday September 4 2015)
2015 - Italian Grand Prix - FP1 (Friday September 4 2015)
Mercedes split on Red Bull deal (Friday September 4 2015)
Rosberg targets Monza pole (Thursday September 3 2015)
Formula One is on the edge (Thursday September 3 2015)
Will Maldonado join Hulkenberg at Force India? (Thursday September 3 2015)
Renault to rescue Lotus team? (Thursday September 3 2015)
Blog: Monza Preview (Wednesday September 2 2015)
Formula One Prediction Competition - Round 12 (Tuesday September 1 2015)
Who will win the Italian Grand Prix? (Tuesday September 1 2015)
McLaren drivers getting frustrated? (Friday August 28 2015)
Ferrari do not want fight with Pirelli (Thursday August 27 2015)
Hamilton delight at qualifying form (Wednesday August 26 2015)
Vettel launches foul-mouthed attack on Pirelli (Wednesday August 26 2015)
Former British F1 driver Wilson killed in crash (Tuesday August 25 2015)
Blog: Belgian GP Report (Monday August 24 2015)
2015 - Belgian GP- Race (Sunday August 23 2015)
2015 - Belgian GP - Qualifying (Sunday August 23 2015)
2015 - Belgian GP - FP3 (Sunday August 23 2015)
2015 - Belgian GP - FP2 (Friday August 21 2015)
2015 - Belgian GP - FP1 (Friday August 21 2015)
Ten drivers in contention for Haas 2016 seats (Friday August 21 2015)
Mercedes to take the fight to their rivals (Thursday August 20 2015)
Raikkonen retains seat at Ferrari (Thursday August 20 2015)
Blog: Spa Preview (Wednesday August 19 2015)
Who will win the Belgium Grand Prix? (Tuesday August 18 2015)
Blog: Why Honda might still get it right (Monday August 17 2015)
Formula One Prediction Competition - Round 11 (Monday August 17 2015)
Stevens pleased with Manor season (Friday August 14 2015)
Toro Rosso takeover talks over (Thursday August 13 2015)
Lack of simulator running will hurt Sauber (Wednesday August 12 2015)
Lotus expect great things from Maldonado (Tuesday August 11 2015)
Toro Rosso should push on (Monday August 10 2015)
Money means nothing to Ricciardo (Friday August 7 2015)
Honda to spend tokens (Thursday August 6 2015)
Force India investigate failures (Wednesday August 5 2015)
McLaren oppose testing plans (Tuesday August 4 2015)
Ferrari speculation affecting Bottas (Monday August 3 2015)
Does Ferrari's Raikkonen option expire today? (Friday July 31 2015)
Double podium for Red Bull Racing (Thursday July 30 2015)
Vettel dedicates victory to Bianchi (Wednesday July 29 2015)
Vital talking point: Hungary - Merc stalling? (Tuesday July 28 2015)
|7.||Push The Button||465|