McLaren’s Heikki Kovalainen and Toyota’s Jarno Trulli have topped the unofficial timesheet on the second day of Silverstone testing, in the face of an unusually subdued performance from Ferrari.
Kovalainen was quickest around the Silverstone circuit with a fastest time of 1:20.015, comfortably faster than Massa’s timesheet topping performance on the prevous day, with Trulli around two-tenths of a second behind him.
Third was Nico Rosberg for Williams, fourth Nelson A Piquet for Renault and fifth Sebastian Vettel for Toro Rosso, experiencing a considerably more effective day than he had on Tuesday, when his car failed leaving him unable to complete more than 10 laps.
He had taken over from Sebastien Bourdais in the car for the second day’s testing in order to learn a circuit that was unfamiliar to him. Bourdais is expected to return for the final day.
The final driver to break the 1:21 barrier was BMW’s Robert Kubica in sixth place. Ferrari, Red Bull, Honda and Force India all posted times within a second at the bottom of the sheet.
A gusty, showery day saw the session interrupted several times by red flags and those teams including Ferrari that were testing aero packages did not always have a smooth ride of it.
McLaren confirmed that it had completed 72 laps and covered 370km during the day’s testing, part of a total of 162 laps run at Silverstone so far.
Its programme was based on the set-up and evaluation of a new-spec front wing and development of mechanical parts. This is set to continue with Lewis Hamilton at the wheel of the MP4-23 for the final day of the test.
At Red Bull, where Mark Webber was in the car for the second day pending David Coulthard’s arrival for the final test outing, a hard-to-identify electrical problem cost the team valuable track time.
The team said: “After an installation lap the RB4 developed a misfire which was diagnosed and fixed. But it later returned, eventually requiring an engine change, even if the cause of the problem was not the engine itself.
“This meant Mark only managed four laps in the morning. In the afternoon, the programme centred on race preparation for the British Grand Prix but unfortunately it was interrupted by red flags.
“Despite only completing limited mileage Mark was happy with his set-up work and hands over driving duties to David Coulthard for tomorrow’s session.”
At Honda Jenson Button put in a heroic 106 laps – by far the largest total of any team testing at Silverstone.
This should have provided the team, which pronounced itself mystified with the loss of performance it experienced at the Canadian Grand Prix and the lack of improvement in France, with valuable data.
However Honda appears to be currently struggling to lift itself from the bottom of this test’s unofficial timesheet.
Timesheet for day two:
- Heikki Kovalainen, McLaren: 1:20.015 (72 laps)
- Jarno Trulli, Toyota: 1:20.391 (95 laps)
- Nico Rosberg, Williams: 1:20.624 (74 laps)
- Nelson A. Piquet, Renault: 1:20.787 (87 laps)
- Sebastian Vettel, Toro Rosso: 1:20.795 (84 laps)
- Robert Kubica, BMW Sauber: 1:20.982 (67 laps)
- Felipe Massa, Ferrari: 1:21.069 (69 laps)
- Mark Webber, Red Bull: 1:21.170 (39 laps)
- Jenson Button, Honda: 1:21.445 (106 laps)
- Giancarlo Fisichella, Force India: 1:21.583 (52 laps)