Mark Webber says he is not taking anything for granted ahead of the new Formula 1 season after the Red Bull driver set a new benchmark time of 1m19.299s time in testing at Jerez on Friday
The Australian revealed after his proper consistently dry day of running that he believed the new RB6 to be a 'good car' but that it was too early to say how it compares to that of his McLaren and Ferrari rivals.
"Today was pretty good, next week might be different," he said. "We need to keep an eye on things as they progress in the early part of the championship.
"I promise you that in Malaysia we won't be talking about the second test in Jerez, things change fast in F1."
Both of the tests at Jerez have been beset by poor weather conditions and Friday proved the first day where the teams could really begin to work through development programmes.
"It wasn't too bad today, it was good to get some dry running in," said Webber. "We tried a mixture of very high and other different fuel loads. It's got to be done because every dry lap is pretty important these days so this is a lot better than we expected today.
"Also tomorrow looks half decent. It's a good baseline for us to work on next week as well in terms of consistent testing. This is the first time we have had a consistent track, so hopefully next week we can start to hone in on a few more specific things."
The 33-year-old Australian added that he believed the RB6 to be a fundamental improvement over its race-winning predecessor but said that direct comparisons were difficult to make because of the new fuel regulations and tyres introduced for 2010.
"When the car is very heavy, it's a different ball game," he said. "Plus the tyres... it's like Roger Federer with a tennis racket... the tyres are crucial for us. The tyres are that different it's so hard to compare.
"But the basics of the car are very good - we have a good car. We still have more learning to do and there is a lot of hard work to be done."
Vel’s Parnelli Jones Racing was briefly one of the biggest names on the US motorsports scene, but its ambition outstripped its resources. STUART CODLING relates the story of a Formula 1 campaign cut off in its prime
As the 2021 Formula 1 title battle winds towards its climax, the United States GP added another thrilling act in the Lewis Hamilton-Max Verstappen battle. Although Hamilton aced the start, Verstappen and Red Bull took the initiative with strategy and were richly rewarded, despite Mercedes' best efforts as the race went down to the wire
On a baking hot afternoon at the returning Circuit of the Americas, Formula 1 drivers were tested to their limits. As the pressure on the title contending squads reaches an ever-greater level of intensity, the foremost challengers again showed their class, but were outshone by a standout drive from the upper midfield
Three years on from Kimi Raikkonen's last Grand Prix victory at Austin, he is now six races away from ending the longest Formula 1 career in history. His friend and former Ice1 Racing rally team PR man ANTHONY PEACOCK explains why there’s nobody quite like the 2007 world champion and why F1 will miss him (but he won’t miss it)
It's 50 years since Jo Siffert was killed in his prime at Brands Hatch. The Swiss scored just two world championship wins in a Formula 1 career spent largely with privateer teams, but showed on numerous occasions in single-seaters and in sportscars with Porsche that he could beat any of the best drivers of his era given the right equipment
As Red Bull and Honda go all-out for victory in the Japanese engine manufacturer’s last season of its latest Formula 1 dalliance, Max Verstappen finds himself thrust into a compelling title fight with Lewis Hamilton. He told OLEG KARPOV about his evolution into a world championship contender and why Red Bull's no compromise ethos suits him down to the ground
Mercedes has been on a roll of late in the ultra-tight fight to win the 2021 Formula 1 world championship. It started off well in practice at Austin for this weekend’s US Grand Prix, but Red Bull got closer as Friday unfolded and even seemed to find an edge in one critical area of what seems set to be another close contest
The 2021 Formula 1 title battle is finely poised with six races remaining, as just six points separate championship leader Max Verstappen from seven-time champion Lewis Hamilton. In such a closely-fought season, the outcome could hinge on several small factors playing the way of Red Bull or Mercedes