Barcelona Day 2: Vettel fastest again

Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB7 practices a pit stop. Formula One Testing, Day 2, Barcelona, Spain,  Saturday 19 February 2011.

Sebastian Vettel and his Red Bull Racing crew practice a pit stop

Feb.19 (PVM) Sebastian Vettel in the Red Bull Racing RB7 was quickest of all at the end of the second day of testing at Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona.

Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB7. Formula One Testing, Day 2, Barcelona, Spain,  Saturday 19 February 2011.

Sebastian Vettel was again the fastest in Barcelona in the Red Bull Racing RB7

The reigning world champion had a busy day running qualifying style flying laps early on, followed by longer stints later in the day and also gave his crew pitstop practice The team attempted a race distance which was interrupted by a red flag, and thereafter lost some time in the pit garage.

Nevertheless Vettel racked up 104 laps during the course of the day and his time of 1 minute 23.315 seconds was over a second faster than his best a day earlier.  His performance over the past few days will no doubt have impacted on his rivals. Red Bull are very serious contenders again.

Jaime Alguersuari (ESP) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR6. Formula One Testing, Day 2, Barcelona, Spain,  Saturday 19 February 2011.

Jaime Alguersuari ended the day second fastest

It was a good day for the energy drinks backed teams as local hero Jaime Alguersuari continued to show impressive pace in the Toro Rosso STR6, ending the day second fastest and best Ferrari powered driver. He managed 96 laps and his best lap time was only fractionally off Vettel’s best.

Ferrari had one of their most problem packed day since the birth of the F150th Italia with Fernando Alonso at the wheel. The Maranello squad less mileage than in previous sessions due to a number of electrical and mechanical niggles which started early in the day and caused the first stoppage half an hour into the day’s session.

The Ferrari F150th Italia of Fernando Alonso (ESP) is recovered to the pits. Formula One Testing, Day 2, Barcelona, Spain,  Saturday 19 February 2011.

Fernando Alonso's Ferrari is recovered to the pits

The team admitted not completing their planned programme for the day, although the Spaniard did have 90 laps to his credit and the third best time of the day, over a half a second off Vettel’s best which he set in a late flurry of fast laps.

In contrast to his former team, Rubens Barrichello racked up 117 laps and ended the day fourth fastest in what must be the team’s most hassle free day since testing began.

After a troubled opening day, with time consuming KERS issues, Renault managed to do some meaningful mileage with the R31 in the hands of both Nick Heidfeld and Vitaly Petrov.

Vitaly Petrov (RUS) Lotus Renault GP R31. Formula One Testing, Day 2, Barcelona, Spain,  Saturday 19 February 2011.

Vitaly Petrov was given extra time in the Renault R31

The Russian was given time in the morning, to compensate for lost running the previous day, with Heidfeld in the cockpit in the afternoon. Heidfeld ended fifth fastest with 41 laps credited, with Petrov managing 61 tours and the 11th best time.

Kamui Kobayashi began his day with long stints in the Sauber C30, followed by some quick runs in the afternoon which saw him set the sixth best time and rack up 125 problem free laps.

Also starting his day with long runs was Nico Rosberg in the Mercedes MGPW02 which showed good consistency and did 131 laps in the process. But unless the German was sandbagging outright pace seems to be lacking in the Silver Arrow. Rosberg was seventh best and fastest of the Mercedes powered brigade.

Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-26. Formula One Testing, Day 2, Barcelona, Spain,  Saturday 19 February 2011.

Jenson Button had a troubled day in the McLaren Mercedes MP4-26

McLaren’s lacklustre start to the season continues prompting the question: Has the late launch of the MP4-26 come back to haunt the Woking squad? During the course of the second day Jenson Button only managed 54 laps on route to setting the eighth best time after losing substantial track time in the morning due to hydraulic problems.

Paul di Resta ran strongly throughout the morning but had an off in the afternoon which saw him lose track time. He ended ninth best with 80 laps counted.

Lotus ran Heikki Kovalainen for most of the day, the Finn ending 10th fastest with 58 laps on the lap chart before handing over to Angolan driver Ricardo Teixeira. He was given an hour to impress the powers that be but was by far the slowest of all.

Vitantonio Liuzzi (ITA) Hispania Racing Team HRT F111. Formula One Testing, Day 2, Barcelona, Spain,  Saturday 19 February 2011.

Vitantonio Liuzzi was back in an F1 cockpit this time with HRT

Also being “watched” was Vitantonio Liuzzi who was given time in the HRT and is reportedly one of the prime candidates for the seat alongside Narain Karthikeyan. The former Force India driver ended 12th fastest with 70 laps to his name.

Slowest of the regulars was Timo Glock in the Virgin VR-02 who spent most of the early morning doing very short runs as the team waited for spares to get their day going in earnest. The German only managed 26 laps during the eight hours.

Barcelona Day 2 – Best Lap Times

P Drivers Teams Times Diff L
1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull RB7 1.23.315 104
2 Jaime Alguersuari Toro Rosso STR6 1.23.519 +0.204 96
3 Fernando Alonso Ferrari F150th 1:23.978 +0.663 90
4 Rubens Barrichello Williams FW33 1.24.008 +0.693 117
5 Nick Heidfeld Renault R31 1.24.242 +0.927 41
6 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber C30 1:24.243 +0.928 125
7 Nico Rosberg Mercedes MGPW02 1.24.730 +1.415 131
8 Jenson Button McLaren MP4-25 1.24.923 +1.608 54
9 Paul Di Resta Force India VJM04 1.25.194 +1.879 80
10 Heikki Kovalainen Team Lotus T128 1.26.421 +3.106 58
11 Vitaly Petrov Renault R31 1.26.884 +3.569 61
12 Vitantonio Liuzzi HRT F1 1:27.044 +3.729 70
13 Timo Glock Virgin MVR-01 1.27.242 +3.927 66
14 Ricardo Teixeira Team Lotus T128 1.31.584 +8.269 26