Alex Ends Pre-Season Testing 2nd Fastest with 118 Laps
Alexander Albon completed his final day of testing in the Scuderia Toro Rosso STR14 with 118 laps and a fastest time of 1:16.882s, setting the 2nd fastest time of Formula One Pre-Season Testing so far.
Alex finished his pre-season testing programme with a flourish at the Circuit de Catalunya, competing another century of laps in the STR14, as he finishes his familiarisation with F1 machinery, ready for his debut at the Australian Grand Prix.
The Thai talent put in a busy morning of work for the team - completing 75 laps on a mixture of long and short runs, where he set his best time of the test on the C5 tyres. Alex posted a 1:16.882s lap time, putting him 2nd on the timing screen - with also the second fastest time of F1 testing so far.
Alex completed a further 43 laps in the afternoon session, ending the day 2nd fastest overall - bringing his time at testing to an end, as teammate Danil Kvyat will run in the final day of testing tomorrow for Toro Rosso.
Over the course of testing, Alex has completed 489 laps - a total of 2276km of running in the STR14 Formula One car.
Alex will now head into his debut weekend as a Formula One driver at the 2019 Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne, on the 15th-17th March.
Alexander Albon (Car 23):
"I'm quite happy with how winter testing went as I was able to do a lot of laps and maximize my time in the car. It's still early days and we won't know until Melbourne what everyone else has been working on, but I think we can be satisfied with how everything turned out the past four days.
We managed to have another day cracking the 100-lap mark, so that's a testament to the team's hard work and the reliability from Honda. Coming into testing you always want to get the most mileage as possible and we've done that, so it's been a lot of learning and getting comfortable with the car – something I wouldn't have been able to do if we weren't reliable.
Overall, we're in a good position with the car and there's been no nasty surprises. There's still a few things we need to tick off tomorrow before we finish testing, but it's been a successful pre-season test as we were able to trial many things to see what works well for us.
It was a great job by the team to get a good baseline for the car so that we could build on it throughout the two weeks."
Jody Egginton (Deputy Technical Director):
"As this is the final day of winter testing for Alex, the programme was focused towards qualifying and race simulations whilst also making best use of the remaining time for further background and aero test items.
As one would expect given his approach so far in testing, Alex made good progress in the qualifying simulation, adapting well to each compound and circuit evolution.
The afternoon race simulation, although not fully completed due to a red flag, included the use of the C1 compound. Alex could therefore achieve further experience of long run tyre optimisation and this demonstrated his increasing confidence with the car. It also provided some very useful tyre data for the engineers to review and act on for the final day of testing.
In terms of pace we are reasonably satisfied, even if tyre wear and graining has been a topic and something we expect to be a challenge for all teams at some events in 2019, hence we have taken the opportunity to work on minimising its effects here."