Daniel Ricciardo returned to the cockpit of the RB13 today for the third day of testing at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
While the Australian racer had a productive morning, completing 48 laps of the circuit as the team conducted aerodynamic tests, the afternoon session was more difficult, as an exhaust issue meant the team was only able to boost the day’s total by a further 22 laps. Despite the problems, Daniel’s work in the morning yielded the day’s third fastest time as he used the soft compound tyre to post a lap of 1:21.153.
“Day two in the car for me and we got a few more laps in, which was good,” said Daniel. “I definitely learned more about the car and the tyres today and really started to feel the downforce. For example, Turns 3 and 9 are now pretty impressive. I think when we start doing 60 laps in the heat you’re going to see some physical limits being pushed for us drivers.”
“This afternoon we found a problem with the exhaust. We had to check it, which took some time, but before that we had a pretty good run of nearly 20 laps, which was important for understanding the tyres. For now, we haven’t got too involved in performance runs. Hopefully next week we can push it a bit more and then see what we’ve got.”
Commenting on the day’s running, Head of Race Engineering Guillaume Rocquelin said: “It’s obviously not ideal when you encounter the kind of issues we had today and on Monday, but that’s the nature of testing. This afternoon we had an exhaust issue that hampered progress and it meant another tricky day for Daniel.”
“It’s unfortunate for him, as these issues manifested themselves on the days he was in the car, but he understands the nature of testing and he’s actually pretty upbeat about how the car feels and how it’s behaving.”
“Ultimately it’s about what you learn from the laps you do get on the board rather than just running for the sake of it and so we’ve learned a lot so far. Tomorrow we’ll learn even more as the track will be artificially wet, so there’s plenty of work still to do before we head back to the factory.”