F1: Jerez and Portimao test reports 16/12/08

By LJ Hutchins

CalendarWednesday, December 17th, 2008

 
 

We’re not saying it’s quite time to recall the processional days of Michael Schumacher – but we’re handing out no prizes for guessing who topped the timesheets at Jerez yet again yesterday…

Come to think of it, what does the Swiss national anthem actually sound like?

Man of the month Sebastien Buemi, in his regular role as a Red Bull tester, held the team’s established wunderkind Sebastian Vettel off the top spot on the unofficial timesheet on a cold day at the southern Spanish track with a fastest lap of 1:17.029 – while filling in for the injured Mark Webber. The German was some three tenths of a second behind him.

In third place, nearly two seconds slower, was BMW’s Nick Heidfeld with his colleague Robert Kubica the first driver to fail to break the 1:20 barrier. In last place was Williams’ Kazuki Nakajima with a fastest lap time of 1:20.332 after taking over from tester Nico Hulkenberg.

Meanwhile, at Portimao, Pedro de la Rosa spurred his McLaren to a recorded fastest lap of 1:30.080 while Ferrari testers Luca Badoer and Marc Gene followed him with times of 1:31.320 and 1:33.076 respectively.

McLaren said: “Pedro took over from Gary Paffett and spent the whole day in the MP4-23K KERS car. Despite initial issues with grip caused by the low-speed circuit configuration, green track surface and cold December weather, Pedro quickly adapted to the new Portimao circuit.

“Alongside the KERS programme, he was also able to complete some 2009 aero testing, using an ’09-spec front wing and moveable flick-ups.”

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