Tag Archives: Circuit de Catalunya

DTM

dtm_2013-03-26-0052

MARCO WITTMANN ON TOP IN FINAL DAY OF TESTING –

Barcelona – Marco Wittmann made for the final fastest lap time the of the official four-day ITR tests at Barcelona. On Friday, in perfect weather conditions with temperatures of about 21.5° C, the DTM rookie hat was the quickest driver at the Circuit de Catalunya. He set his fastest time as early as in the morning session by crossing the line of the circuit’s 2.977-kilometre version with his BMW M3 DTM in 1:06.451 minutes.

Second position on the time sheets of day four was secured by Pascal Wehrlein, who is about to contest his first season on the grid of the most popular international touring-car series – just as Wittmann. With his DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé, 18-year old Wehrlein set a personal fastest lap time of 1:06.687 minutes and was the fastest in the afternoon session – but finished 0.235 seconds behind Wittmann, in the end. Christian Vietoris (Mercedes-Benz) came third, with his personal fastest lap time of1:06,706 minutes, followed by the best Audi driver, Timo Scheider. The fastest lap time Scheider achieved with his RS 5 DTM (1:06,844 minutes) was 0.393 seconds slower than the one of Wittmann.

Thanks to Wittmann, BMW also secured one of the fastest lap times on the Barcelona time sheets. On the previous three days, the fastest lap times were secured by the two Mercedes-Benz drivers Robert Wickens (Tuesday/1:06.735 minutes) and Gary Paffett (Wednesday/1:06.149) as well as Audi’s new signing Jamie Green (Thursday/1:07.171). So, Paffett also proved to be the quickest of the entire four days of testing. While the fastest man on Friday also was the busiest: Marco Wittmann completed 220 laps, representing a total mileage of 654.94 kilometres, on a single day of testing at Barcelona.

Prior to the season kick-off, held on 05th May at the Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg, the teams of Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz will have another four days of testing for their preparations for the coming season. From 09th to 12th April, Hockenheim will be the venue of the second and final ITR tests, with the 09th April also representing the official DTM Media Day.

On the four days of the first official ITR tests, the teams and drivers gathered a lot of – predominantly positive – experiences with two technical innovations. The one innovation were the new Hankook option tyres and the other the new Drag Reduction System, DRS, that allows the drivers to change the adjustment of the rear wing for a certain amount of time to temporarily increase their top speed.

Quotes after day four:

Timo Scheider (Audi): “Being back at the wheel of a racing car after such a long time was fantastic. First of all I had to familiarise myself with the DTM car but I succeeded in doing so very well. It may sound like a standard comment but we completed 90 percent of our scheduled programme. Nonetheless, it is extremely difficult to make reliable assessments. It was sunny at warm, at times, and then again overcast and colder. Therefore, the track conditions differed a lot. On Friday afternoon I covered my first kilometres with the option tyres – and they represented a huge positive surprise. Driving the DTM car on these tyres is truly big fun. Afterwards, you just don’t want to switch back to the standard tyres. And the DRS also makes an impact. I think it was time for making some changes. The fans want to see overtaking manoeuvres and both the DRS and the option tyres will be helpful to achieve this goal.”

Andy Priaulx (BMW): “Contesting such a test with your new team is really nice. We used the time to get to know one another better – and I quickly found a good rhythm. I definitely will leave Barcelona with a lot of positive experiences under my belt. The option tyre is quick and rather consistent. And when you go out again on the standard tyres after a stint on the options you have to re-adapt. That’s an interesting challenge.”

Christian Vietoris (Mercedes-Benz): “I had two rather positive days of testing. We had no technical problems whatsoever and consequently, we could make optimum use of the time by gaining a lot of important insights. And in this year, with the limited test time available to us, this is of particular importance. The crew also cooperated fantastically and did a great job. I’ve also got a very positive feeling regarding the DRS but at this point in time it’s difficult to say how big the advantage will be, in the end.”

GP3

Neiderhauser barca 2013

NEIDERHAUSER FASTEST ON FINAL BARCA TEST-

Jenzer Motorsport’s Patric Niederhauser fastest in second official pre-season test
 
Swiss driver Patric Niederhauser set a blistering laptime of 1:33.750 which was an impressive 4.2 seconds faster than the best GP3 lap set at the Circuit de Catalunya in 2012. It was another trouble-free test session in Barcelona with the second generation car as the full grid of 27 drivers fought with the mixed weather conditions. Aaro Vainio was quickest in the afternoon for Koiranen GP.
 
Melville McKee replaced Lewis Williamson at Bamboo Engineering which was the only change to the line-up for day two. The first hour of the test was frenetic as the drivers fed onto the track eager to make the most of dry running before the expected rain fell. Jenzer Motorsport made it a one-two with Niederhauser and Alex Fontana topping the timesheets early on with drivers unable to improve as the heavens opened.
 
Jack Harvey stopped on track in his ART Grand Prix car with technical gremlins whilst Nick Cassidy (Marussia Manor Racing) clipped the barrier which caused brief red flags. Carmen Jorda (Bamboo Engineering) and Emanuele Zonzini (Trident) spun off into the gravel trap as the rain pounded down which caused two short interruptions at the close of the morning session.
 
Niederhauser’s quickest time was almost half a second faster than his teammate Fontana with Tio Ellinas (Marussia Manor Racing), Cassidy, Giovanni Venturini (Trident), Daniil Kvyat (MW Arden), Harvey, Facu Regalia (ART Grand Prix), Dino Zamparelli (Marussia Manor Racing) and Conor Daly (ART Grand Prix) rounding out the top ten at the chequered flag.
 
Heavy rain hammered down and the temperature dropped as the afternoon session got underway as the drivers wrestled with the wet conditions. There were a number of red flags in the afternoon session which included Josh Webster, Regalia, Samin Gomez, Zonzini, McKee and Daly who had minor offs as the treacherous weather continued to cause drivers a headache. Daly held top spot in the standings with the Koiranen GP duo of Kevin Korjus and Aaro Vainio second and third as the drivers concentrated on wet weather set-up.
 
Carlos Sainz Jnr (MW Arden) went into the tyre barrier at turn three which had been problematic for a number of drivers, thus causing significant damage to his car which brought the red flag out. In the final part of the session Vainio shot to P1 with Harvey into P2.  Harvey ran off track at the end of the session which meant the session ended under red flag conditions. Therefore Vainio remained at the head of the timings in front of Harvey, Daly, Korjus, Eric Lichtenstein, Regalia, Venturini, Jimmy Eriksson (Status Grand Prix), Nick Yelloly (Carlin) and Zamparelli.
 
Patric Niederhauser commented: “I have so much fun driving the second generation car, it’s very challenging. The speed differential between the GP3/13 and GP3/10 car is immense and I feel there are still improvements to come within the car set-up as this is only the second test. Driver skill is really tested as you have to adapt your driving style to suit the needs and the power of the machine. Fast corners are much trickier to control. Tyre management is even more important this year and it’s the perfect preparation to learn and progress to GP2 and Formula 1.”
 
The final official pre-season test takes place at Silverstone on 03-04 April before the first round gets underway in May at Barcelona.

GP3

Conor Daly barca 2013

CONOR DALY ON TOP ON DAY ONE IN BARCA…

ART Grand Prix’s Conor Daly sets the pace on day one in Spain
 
The American Conor Daly recorded the quickest time of the day with a 1:34.578 which was 3.5 seconds faster than the best lap set in the GP3/10 car in 2012 as GP3 Series had another successful day with the second generation car with the full grid of 27 drivers continuing to learn in the new GP3 machine. Marussia Manor Racing’s Nick Cassidy topped the timesheets in the morning.
 
The Circuit de Catalunya hosted the second official pre-season test in damp conditions after rain had fallen overnight. After 20 minutes the drivers ventured onto the track on slicks and then the heavens opened with light rain. This was tricky for the drivers as it was too wet for slick Pirelli tyres but there was not enough water on track for use of wets, therefore Aaro Vainio (Koiranen GP), Daniil Kvyat (MW Arden), Samin Gomez (Jenzer Motorsport) and Carlos Sainz Jnr (MW Arden) were the only drivers to post a laptime. Kevin Korjus made it a Koiranen GP one-two after popping in the second fastest time, as the sunshine broke through and the track began to dry. There were two brief interruptions as David Fumanelli (Trident) stopped on circuit with technical gremlins.
 
Local favourite Sainz Jnr went top in the closing stages before Korjus reclaimed his position at the head of the standings. Soon after Cassidy set the best time of the morning in a 1:34.924.Korjus, Sainz Jnr, Alex Fontana (Jenzer Motorsport), Ellinas, Vainio, Lewis Williamson (Bamboo Engineering), Patric Niederhauser (Jenzer Motorsport), Adderly Fong (Status Grand Prix) and Facu Regalia (ART Grand Prix) completed the top ten at the chequered flag.
 
Following the two hour break, heavy clouds hung over the circuit threatening to downpour but the sun fought through. There were several stoppages in the afternoon session including Vainio spinning into the gravel and technical gremlins for Josh Webster (Status Grand Prix) Patrick Kujala (Koiranen GP), Giovanni Venturini (Trident) and Patric Niederhauser (Jenzer Motorsport).
 
ART Grand Prix teammates Regalia and Jack Harvey set the pace at the midway point of the session until Daniil Kvyat (MW Arden) shot to P1 with Nick Yelloly (Carlin) a mere 0.069s shy of the Russian. The final 30 minutes was like a qualifying session and was hotly contested as the drivers fed onto the track with new tyres.
 
Ellinas put in a flier with a 1:34.710 as the clock ticked down until American Conor Daly (ART Grand Prix) went a tenth quicker to finish the day fastest as Cassidy snuck into P3 as the chequered flag came out. Daly, Ellinas, Cassidy, Fontana, Yelloly, Regalia, Fumanelli, Kvyat, Sainz Jnr and Korjus rounded out the top ten.
 
Conor Daly (ART Grand Prix) commented: “We had a lot to figure out with the new GP3/13 car at the first test in Estoril and I believe now we have found a great set-up and a nice balance to achieve that one important hot lap. I am extremely happy and it was a nice surprise to be P1. I feel really positive about the second generation car, it’s much more fun to drive and certainly makes you question yourself before you add more power. I love having more speed!”
 
Tomorrow’s test session will run from 09.00 – 12.00 with a one hour break. The afternoon session will run from 13.00 – 16.00 CET.

GP2

Felipe Nasr testing barca 2013

STEFANO COLETTI ENDS ON TOP-
Rapax driver quickest on final pre-season test day in Barcelona
 
Less than two weeks before the 2013 GP2 Series season kicks off in Malaysia, Stefano Coletti confirmed his good form today: the Monegasque driver topped a dry testing day in Barcelona in the morning session with a laptime of 1:29.055. Felipe Nasr was fastest in the afternoon for Carlin.
 
A clear blue sky welcomed the GP2 drivers at the Circuit de Catalunya this morning for the final day of pre-season testing. As the pitlane opened, the track was still damp though pushing the majority of drivers to opt for wet weather tyres for the first half of the session. Stéphane Richelmi was the early pace setter, but his teammate Marcus Ericsson took control of the timesheets after one hour done and dusted in the session.
 
At the halfway mark and on a drying track, Riccardo Agostini was the first driver to test the hard compounds and to significantly improve on Ericsson’s best laptime. The rest of the field also switched to slicks and it was again Ericsson on soft tyres who set the best laptime in a 1:29.606 until a red flag was waved when Rene Binder spun and stopped at Turn 5. At the restart, most drivers opted for the Soft Pirelli compounds and Coletti found extra pace to set the best laptime of the session with a 1:29.055, one tenth clear from Ericsson. Richelmi, Jolyon Palmer, Sergio Canamasas, James Calado, and rookies Kevin Giovesi, Mitch Evans, Daniel Abt and Adrian Quaife-Hobbs rounded up the top ten.
 
The afternoon session opened one hour later on a dry track. Conor Daly replaced Riccardo Agostini at Hilmer Motorsport. Fabio Leimer set the early pace, but Coletti (on the hard compound) edged him out of the top spot. The Rapax driver remained in control of the timesheets until mid-session when Nasr on soft compounds set the fastest second and third sectors to claim top spot a shy 0.09s quicker than Coletti. In the closing stages, the Monegasque driver reduced the gap slightly to end three hundredths slower than Nasr. Taking advantage of a dry track after two days of wet weather, the drivers focused mainly on race simulations and pit-stop practice. Tom Dillmann finished third ahead of Leimer, Quaife-Hobbs, Robin Frijns, Calado, Giovesi, Evans and Daly.
 
This marked the end of the pre-season testing for GP2 Series. In two weeks time, the paddock will gather in Sepang, Malaysia, for the opening round of the eighth season of the category.
 
Morning results
Driver
Team
Laptime
Laps
1.
Stefano Coletti
Rapax
1:29.055
30
2.
Marcus Ericsson
DAMS
1:29.217
35
3.
Stéphane Richelmi
DAMS
1:29.453
39
4.
Jolyon Palmer
Carlin
1:29.467
28
5.
Sergio Canamasas
Caterham Racing
1:29.611
36
6.
James Calado
ART Grand Prix
1:29.624
33
7.
Kevin Giovesi
Venezuela GP Lazarus
1:29.812
32
8.
Mitch Evans
Arden International
1:29.902
34
9.
Daniel Abt
ART Grand Prix
1:29.994
30
10.
Adrian Quaife-Hobbs
MP Motorsport
1:30.012
23
11.
Daniel De Jong
MP Motorsport
1:30.037
26
12.
Robin Frijns
RUSSIAN TIME
1:30.168
24
13.
Fabio Leimer
Racing Engineering
1:30.244
22
14.
Pal Varhaug
Hilmer Motorsport
1:30.300
26
15.
Felipe Nasr
Carlin
1:30.459
27
16.
Rene Binder
Venezuela GP Lazarus
1:30.484
19
17.
Jake Rosenzweig
Barwa Addax Team
1:30.620
16
18.
Johnny Cecotto
Arden International
1:30.635
31
19.
Simon Trummer
Rapax
1:30.667
28
20.
Riccardo Agostini
Hilmer Motorsport
1:30.724
35
21.
Rio Haryanto
Barwa Addax Team
1:30.813
29
22.
Tom Dillmann
RUSSIAN TIME
1:30.855
27
23.
Rodolfo Gonzalez
Trident Racing
1:31.029
13
24.
Ma Qing Hua
Caterham Racing
1:31.035
32
25.
Julian Leal
Racing Engineering
1:31.220
14
Afternoon results
Driver
Team
Laptime
Laps
1.
Felipe Nasr
Carlin
1:29.381
46
2.
Stefano Coletti
Rapax
1:29.414
28
3.
Tom Dillmann
RUSSIAN TIME
1:29.843
37
4.
Fabio Leimer
Racing Engineering
1:29.862
30
5.
Adrian Quaife-Hobbs
MP Motorsport
1:29.914
39
6.
Robin Frijns
RUSSIAN TIME
1:30.053
29
7.
James Calado
ART Grand Prix
1:30.256
55
8.
Kevin Giovesi
Venezuela GP Lazarus
1:30.318
33
9.
Mitch Evans
Arden International
1:30.324
34
10.
Conor Daly
Hilmer Motorsport
1:30.417
37
11.
Daniel De Jong
MP Motorsport
1:30.441
29
12.
Rene Binder
Venezuela GP Lazarus
1:30.454
28
13.
Pal Varhaug
Hilmer Motorsport
1:30.554
41
14.
Julian Leal
Racing Engineering
1:30.601
36
15.
Stéphane Richelmi
DAMS
1:30.643
40
16.
Daniel Abt
ART Grand Prix
1:30.721
52
17.
Sergio Canamasas
Caterham racing
1:30.813
54
18.
Johnny Cecotto
Arden International
1:30.821
33
19.
Marcus Ericsson
DAMS
1:30.823
40
20.
Simon Trummer
Rapax
1:30.884
43
21.
Jolyon Palmer
Carlin
1:30.918
28
22.
Rio Haryanto
Barwa Addax Team
1:30.997
42
23.
Jake Rosenzweig
Barwa Addax Team
1:31.271
38
24.
Rodolfo Gonzalez
Trident Racing
1:31.368
37
25.
Ma Qing Hua
Caterham Racing
1:31.370
53

F1Weekly podcast # 618

2013 Official Photos

F1WEEKLY PODCAST NUMBER 618 CLARK AND NASIR DISCUSS JEREZ TESTING AND THE BRAZIER REPORT. AND THE WILLIAMS F1 TEAM LAUNCHES WILLIAMS RENAULT FW35

19 February 2013. Barcelona, Spain. The Williams F1 Team launched its 2013 race car the FW35, at the Circuit de Catalunya in Spain today. The latest Williams is a culmination of more than 12 months’ research and development by the team’s technical departments in Grove and features improvements in several key areas over last year’s race-winning FW34.

“Given the rule stability over the winter,” says Williams Technical Director Mike Coughlan, “I’m pleased with the gains that we’ve been able to make with this car. It’s a better, more refined Formula One car than the FW34 and I think everyone involved in the project can feel proud of the work they’ve done.”

Despite being an evolution of 2012’s car, more than 80 per cent of the FW35 is new. It has a new gearbox, new rear suspension, new radiators, a new floor, new exhausts, new bodywork, a new nose and a significant amount of weight has been saved as well.

With many new parts on the car, the team has carried out a lot of reliability work over the winter. The gearbox alone has already completed 3200kms on the dyno, a lot of which was conducted in the form of five straight Grand Prix weekends.

Today’s unveiling of the FW35, however, with its drivers Pastor Maldonado and Valtteri Bottas is only the beginning. From here the car will continue to be developed throughout the year, beginning with an aerodynamic upgrade in time for the first race. By season’s end it is expected that the FW35 will have made strong performance improvements and Coughlan is in no doubt over the main area of gain.

“The Coanda effect is going to be a big thing for us,” Coughlan says. “There’s been no rule clarification concerning this area of the car, so we’ll work closely with Renault to maximise the available gains. Use of the DRS is more restricted this year, so we’ll take some resource away from that and focus on other areas.”

Williams FW35 side

Frank Williams, Team Principal added: “A group of talented people with good imagination and plenty of courage have been working together to build the Williams Renault FW35.  We will have to wait until Australia to truly see what we have, but we believe it is step forward from last year’s car which was also a very competitive vehicle. Pastor is a delightful character who is a massively determined racer, whilst Valtteri is quieter but still waters run deep and he is a highly gifted driver.

“Williams has been at the top many times over the last 30 years. It’s the nature of the sport to have ups and downs, but when we are down we always fight our way back. I’m hoping that with the current team we have in place, our new FW35, the combined talent of Pastor, Valtteri and Susie, and the continued support from our partners; we will be in a position to challenge the very best.”

Pastor Maldonado: “Starting my third season with Williams is important for both myself and the team.  We’ve been working hard to develop the car and improve our performance. Last year we won a race and were competitive, but this season we must be even more competitive which I believe is possible. Consistency will be our aim to close the gap to the teams in front. There are a number of changes this season; I have a new Race Engineer and a new teammate in Valtteri, but there is a nice atmosphere right now as we are all competitive and know each other well. Being part of the Williams family is very special as a driver and I want to thank Frank for not only giving me the opportunity to drive for him, but also to deliver a win. My goal is to help take the team back to the top.”

Valtteri Bottas: “It feels great to now be promoted to race driver with Williams this season. It’s a big step and I’m really looking forward to it. I have been doing a lot of training, meeting with my engineers and working in the simulator in preparation; so I feel ready. We know we have improved our car from last season but I am looking forward to seeing how it compares on track. We have a busy test programme ahead but I’m really excited. The moment the start lights go out in Melbourne is a moment I have been building towards my whole career.”

Susie Wolff: “I’m incredibly proud and excited to have increased my role with Williams this year. It’s been a busy start for me as we awaited the arrival of the FW35 but I highly rate Mike Coughlan and his team and they have done a great job. Being the first to get behind the wheel of the FW35 at Idiada was a real honour. It was a special feeling to drive the FW35 out of the garage for the first time and successfully complete its first kilometres in front of many of the team who have put so much effort into the design and build.”

The team has eight days of on-track testing in Barcelona scheduled with the new car, prior to leaving for the Australian Grand Prix at the beginning of March.

[audio:http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/mp3.f1weekly.com/podcasts/02-19-13f1weekly618.mp3]

Motorsports Mondial

Photo: gp2media

James Calado storms to Barcelona pole

Englishman tops qualifying in style

James Calado claimed his maiden GP2 pole position with a controlled but aggressive lap in the opening minutes of this afternoon’s qualifying session at the Circuit de Catalunya, leaving his more experienced rivals in the shade as he took the top spot in the blazing heat ahead of Fabio Leimer and Stéphane Richelmi.

The Briton’s 1:30.655 lap gave him a two tenths cushion over his closest rivals, with the gap closing slightly late in the session when Leimer improved his time. Calado, along with most of the grid, chose to go out early on the soft compound tyre to take advantage of the F1 rubber on the circuit, and the only question after the first few laps was whether the gamble taken by the few remaining drivers would pay off.

This morning’s fastest driver Josef Kral took to the circuit as most of his rivals came back into the pits, but he was unable to match his earlier performance. Marcus Ericsson and Fabio Leimer also delayed using their single set of option: the Swiss driver was an impressive P4 on his first set, and while the Swede was unable to improve his times, Leimer pushed up two spots but was unable to match Calado’s best lap.

With little chance to improve, many drivers used the remainder of the session as a bonus practice session ahead of tomorrow’s feature race, which will see Max Chilton, Giedo van der Garde, Fabio Onidi, Davide Valsecchi, Stefano Coletti, Jolyon Palmer and Nathanaël Berthon line up behind the top three. With conditions forecast to be much the same as this afternoon’s session, the race promises to be a scorcher.