Jerez day 1: Alonso sets early pace

There was an unusual name at the head of the timesheets as testing kicked off at Jerez in Southern Spain today (Thursday) as Fernando Alonso set the pace for Renault

Jerez day 1: Alonso sets early pace

Heavy overnight rain meant the four-day test kicked off on a damp track and surprisingly, given the sunny weather and 17-degree temperatures, wet patches remained on the circuit until late morning.

The track was dry in the afternoon, and the times came down accordingly, which allowed Alonso to set a best mark of 1m21.782s. The Spaniard was running Renault's unique new suspension system (see separate story), fitted to one of this year's R202 chassis.

McLaren tester driver Alex Wurz was next up, less than a tenth down on the Renault and only a thousandth up on Ralf Schumacher. The Williams driver was putting Michelin's tyres through their paces and was one of the session's busiest drivers, clocking up 81 laps of the former GP venue.

Only Jaguar's Antonio Pizzonia did more - 87 - as he racked up the miles for his new team. Team-mate Mark Webber was in the opposite boat as he once again experienced problems with Cosworth's new V10 engine.

"It was not a good day," the Australian admitted. "We had some problems, but not the same ones as we had at Barcelona. It's a shame because we really need mileage at the moment."

Webber brought out one of the day's two red flags when his R3C stopped on track. The other came when Wurz's McLaren was halted by a technical problem while on track.


Fernando Alonso Renault M 1m21.782s 71
Alex Wurz McLaren-Mercedes M 1m21.868s 48
Ralf Schumacher Williams-BMW M 1m21.872s 81
Kimi Raikkonen McLaren-Mercedes M 1m22.424s 44
Antonio Pizzonia Jaguar M 1m23.035s 87
Jarno Trulli Renault M 1m23.401s 46
Marc Gene Williams-BMW M 1m23.811s 60
Mark Webber Jaguar M 1m24.276s 24

M = Michelin
B = Bridgestone

shares
comments
Tobacco Ban Could Threaten European Races

Previous article

Tobacco Ban Could Threaten European Races

Next article

Ferrari Duo Quickest at Barcelona - Day Two

Ferrari Duo Quickest at Barcelona - Day Two
Load comments
How Ferrari has brought the best from F1’s smooth operator Plus

How Ferrari has brought the best from F1’s smooth operator

As a young boy, Carlos Sainz Jr was schooled by his father in the special folklore surrounding Ferrari in Formula 1. Now an established grand prix ace – and a Ferrari driver to boot – Sainz opens up to BEN ANDERSON about driving for the team of his childhood hero, and of his own boyhood dreams

How Hungarian GP thriller sounded alarm bell for F1 2022 cars Plus

How Hungarian GP thriller sounded alarm bell for F1 2022 cars

OPINION: The 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix may not have been a thrill-a-minute overtaking fest, but it's a race that will live long in the memory as one of the best of the current era of Formula 1. And as F1 moves to regulations in 2022 aimed at boosting overtaking, Hungary showed the balance it must strike with its new machinery as not to deny similarly tense spectacles

Was Hamilton's Hungary solo start a good or bad look for F1? Plus

Was Hamilton's Hungary solo start a good or bad look for F1?

OPINION: Different perspectives had Lewis Hamilton’s solo second standing start in Formula 1’s 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix as fabulous or farcical. But did it make the championship appear too silly for the sake of a moment of high-charged sporting drama?

Why unseen Hungary heroics could be the making of F1's most overlooked driver Plus

Why unseen Hungary heroics could be the making of F1's most overlooked driver

The chaotic start to the Hungarian GP set the scene for F1's less heralded drivers to make a name for themselves. Esteban Ocon did just that to win in fine style, but further down the order one driver was making his first visit to the points and - while the circumstances were fortunate - took full advantage of the chance presented to him

Formula 1
Aug 3, 2021
Hungarian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Hungarian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

This was race that showcased the best and worst of Formula 1, producing a first time winner and a memorable comeback to a podium finish. Avoiding trouble at the start and astute strategy calls were key to success, but where some drivers took full advantage, others made key errors that cost them dearly

Formula 1
Aug 2, 2021
The “heart-breaking” call that led to Ocon’s Hungarian GP triumph Plus

The “heart-breaking” call that led to Ocon’s Hungarian GP triumph

Set to restart the red-flagged Hungarian Grand Prix in second, Esteban Ocon had some doubts when he peeled into the pits to swap his intermediate tyres for slicks. But this "heart-breaking" call was vindicated in spectacular fashion as the Alpine driver staved off race-long pressure from Sebastian Vettel for a memorable maiden Formula 1 victory

Formula 1
Aug 2, 2021
The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career Plus

The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career

Emerson Fittipaldi’s decision to go racing with his brother led to him falling out of F1, but he bloomed again on the IndyCar scene. NIGEL ROEBUCK considers a career of two halves

Formula 1
Jul 31, 2021
Why Mercedes is pleased to be in the Hungary hunt at a 'Red Bull track' Plus

Why Mercedes is pleased to be in the Hungary hunt at a 'Red Bull track'

Mercedes ended Friday practice at the Hungaroring with a clear gap to Red Bull thanks to Valtteri Bottas’s pace in topping FP2. But there are other reasons why the Black Arrows squad feels satisfied with its progress so far at a track many Formula 1 observers reckon favours Red Bull overall

Formula 1
Jul 30, 2021