Alex Completes Final Pre-Season Test Running in the RB16
Alex and Max completing a cumulative 307 laps of the famous Montmeló track on Week 2 of Pre-Season Testing for Aston Martin Red Bull Racing in the new RB16.
As is usually the case with pre-season testing – however many test days and weeks are scheduled – there was a subtle change of emphasis in this second half of the programme, with work shifting out of the basic getting-to-know-you phase, and into more performance-based running.
Wednesday – day one of test two, saw Alex complete 29 laps in the morning and Max do 84 in the afternoon. Alex’s morning started late after a problem with the rear suspension. Very minor, and something that won’t trouble the Team again, but tricky to get to, requiring the gearbox to be taken off. Alex missed the first couple of hours of the day.
“We had a small issue with the suspension and lost a bit of time, so this morning was a little frustrating – but we did so many laps last week we’re still on a good footing and haven’t really fallen behind our plan. Even though we didn’t get as many laps as expected, the car was feeling pretty good and already an improvement on how it was last week.”
Alex had the better conditions in the afternoon of Day 2 and completed 61 laps but the blustery wind – often a problem on the exposed hilltop above Montmeló – still made for difficulties.
“This afternoon was a little bit disrupted, mostly because of the wind, which was tricky, and it was hard to get a good read on balance, but otherwise it wasn’t too bad today.
Everything’s going well, but of course we need to look at the data as it was not so easy to do direct comparisons today [but] we have done a lot of running and I think the positive thing is that we know the direction we’re happy with. We have got a good base heading into the start of the season.”
Alex evaluated his winter testing experiment as “solid and smooth,” He completed 59 laps in the morning of the final day of testing, before a trip through the gravel curtailed his running a little ahead of the lunchtime switchover.
“We’ve pushed the mileage and completed a lot of laps, testing and experimenting with a lot of development parts and everything is looking good. We have a lot of data to look through, but we now have more of an understanding of the car."
With pre-season testing completed, Alex looks ahead to the first race of the season forthe Australian Grand Prix at Melbourne - the start of his season season in Formula One.