Gene buoyed by test progress

Williams-BMW test driver Marc Gene has said the team is well ahead of the point it was at this time 12 months ago, despite a hesitant start to its test programme with the new FW25 challenger in Spain this week

Gene buoyed by test progress

Gene has been tasked with racking up miles on BMW's new P83 engine and the shorter and lighter Williams gearbox on an interim car in recent weeks. He feels the team is on target to close to gap to chief rivals Ferrari.

"The hybrid car was ready earlier than it has ever been," he told autosport.com. "So I would say that today we are ahead of where we were at the same time last year. I have been concentrating on reliability running with the new engine and gearbox and I've been a very busy guy because it has gone so well."

Gene is unlikely to drive the FW25 until the final test before the team heads for the Melbourne season-opener, but says he would rather test between grands prix than drive on Friday's as teams such as Renault have decided to do.

"I'd rather do 100 days of testing in front of no one, like I do now, than 16 days in front of everyone," he said. "I want to do quality work, whereas on a Friday it will be a rush, just testing tyres and set-ups. The satisfaction is better when you get to drive for longer."

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