Mixed emotions for Pedro de la Rosa on Ferrari debut

Pedro de la Rosa admitted that his Ferrari debut was a day of mixed emotions after fearing that he would not be able to do more than a few laps

Mixed emotions for Pedro de la Rosa on Ferrari debut

The 41-year-old's Ferrari F138 suffered a gearbox failure in the morning, which caused a small fire, and there were initially concerns that the damage might have prevented the car running again today.

But after a gearbox change, de la Rosa took to the track in the afternoon for his first serious laps.

"When I stepped out of the car on the installation lap after the gearbox broke, I was not feeling very happy because you wait for an opportunity like this for all your life, then suddenly after a few corners you have to step out of the car," said de la Rosa.

"I was very, very excited but then I had a low, then the mechanics did a fantastic job to turn the car around and we had a sensible afternoon, which is critical because of how expensive one day of testing is nowadays.

De la Rosa added that he was happy with his own performance despite his programme including data gathering runs and aerodynamic tests that prevented him setting an eye-catching time.

"I was very happy at the end to do quite competitive laps, for the conditions we were running in," he said.

"There is a scientific approach behind the test - it's not just 'throw Pedro in the car'."

AUTOSPORT says
F1 editor Edd Straw

It was very strange to see Pedro de la Rosa decked in the red of Ferrari and even the man himself was clearly delighted by the experience of driving one of Maranello's finest.

In a sport that is so often cold, clinical and cynical, to see a 41-year-old who knows in his heart that he has most probably started his final grand prix reveling in getting behind the wheel to do an important job for this great team, was a real feel-good moment.

The ex-Arrows, Jaguar, McLaren, Sauber and HRT racer has a vital role to play and no less a judge than Fernando Alonso recognised that de la Rosa was the perfect man to play the central role in development of Ferrari's simulator.

This was no charitable act from Ferrari, but a smart move that should help to close the gap in factory-based technologies that has played a part in it not winning a championship since the in-season testing ban.

And if it can give an affable, popular and very capable veteran an experience that he has waited for his whole career, and probably never thought was going to happen, then that can only be a good thing.

shares
comments
Jerez F1 testing: Raikkonen says feeling with car improving
Previous article

Jerez F1 testing: Raikkonen says feeling with car improving

Next article

Jerez test: The final trackside verdict

Jerez test: The final trackside verdict
The combination behind the Silverstone racing battles Hamilton called "F1 at its best" Plus

The combination behind the Silverstone racing battles Hamilton called "F1 at its best"

OPINION: The late battling in the British Grand Prix wowed Formula 1 fans and surely represents the best racing action of the season so far. And there was a cocktail of factors that created the action, from which Carlos Sainz emerged as a popular new winner

How Ferrari’s Monaco headache became its Silverstone migraine Plus

How Ferrari’s Monaco headache became its Silverstone migraine

OPINION: Ferrari won the British Grand Prix with Carlos Sainz, but it ultimately cost Charles Leclerc a chance to make a bigger dent in Max Verstappen's title lead by leaving the Monegasque out on old tyres towards the end. Like Monaco, indecision over strategy proved to be the Scuderia's biggest issue - and if the team doesn't reflect, the headache can only intensify

Formula 1
Jul 5, 2022
The five factors behind Sainz winning a British GP he’d twice lost Plus

The five factors behind Sainz winning a British GP he’d twice lost

Formula 1 has a newest race winner, in a grand prix the victor appeared to have lost twice, only to charge back to headline a sensational and dramatic British Grand Prix. From a massive start crash to a late sprint finish, here’s how five factors saw Carlos Sainz take his maiden grand prix win

Formula 1
Jul 4, 2022
Why there was no case to answer in Aston’s latest F1 copycat saga Plus

Why there was no case to answer in Aston’s latest F1 copycat saga

The appearance of a revised Aston Martin in Spain caused controversy but PAT SYMONDS explains why the FIA investigation found the Silverstone team had no case to answer

Formula 1
Jul 3, 2022
Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone Plus

Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone

After a slow start to Friday at Silverstone, all the Formula 1 teams had to effectively cram in a day’s worth of practice into one hour. But there was still plenty to learn and while Ferrari topped the times, a three-way battle is brewing ahead of the British Grand Prix

Formula 1
Jul 2, 2022
Why the future is bright for the British GP Plus

Why the future is bright for the British GP

It wasn’t so long ago the situation looked bleak at Silverstone with the future of the British Grand Prix under threat. But a transformation has seen it restored to one of the most important races on the Formula 1 calendar, with bigger and better to come

Formula 1
Jul 1, 2022
Could mixed fortunes for F1's leading Brits turn around at Silverstone? Plus

Could mixed fortunes for F1's leading Brits turn around at Silverstone?

For the first time in many years, none of the local racers starts among the favourites for the British Grand Prix. But George Russell, Lewis Hamilton and Lando Norris could have reasons for optimism

Formula 1
Jun 30, 2022
Verstappen exclusive: Why F1’s champion isn’t fazed by Silverstone return Plus

Verstappen exclusive: Why F1’s champion isn’t fazed by Silverstone return

Max Verstappen is the world’s number one racing driver… and he’s determined to keep it that way. Speaking exclusively to GP Racing's OLEG KARPOV, the Red Bull driver explains why he’s relishing the 2022 championship battle with Charles Leclerc – and why he’s not worried about returning to Silverstone, the scene of the biggest accident of his career last year

Formula 1
Jun 30, 2022