Bahrain f1 testing f1 2024 ferrari

Bahrain F1 Testing Review: Driver & Team Quotes

Bahrain f1 testing f1 2024 ferrari

Preseason testing for the 2024 Formula 1 World Championship is over, ten teams and their 20 drivers put their new cars through their paces at Bahrain Internationa Circuit for three days this past week.

Three days of bullet-proof reliability and a perception that all the teams made substantial gains over the winter however but at first glance, reigning F1 World Champions Red Bull is again the team to beat, the team to chase and the team that set the benchmark yet again, this time with the RB20.

Here is what drivers and their team representatives had to say at the end of Bahrain F1 Testing:

Ferrari: The car is reacting the way that we wanted it to

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Team Report: The three days of testing prior to the Bahrain Grand Prix, the opening round of the 2024 Formula 1 World Championship, ended under floodlights this evening at the Bahrain International Circuit. Scuderia Ferrari’s numbers for the three days are 423 laps, equivalent to 2,257 kilometres, the equivalent of over seven Grands Prix, 149 laps (806.4 km) from today.

Charles Leclerc: “We’ve wrapped up our third day of testing, having put in a solid number of laps and completed a lot of different tests, which is positive. The car is reacting the way that we wanted it to, but it is still difficult to assess its level of competitiveness right now. The feeling is better than the base we started from last year. Now, it’s full focus on the race and I can’t wait to be back on track next week.”

Carlos Sainz: One last push here in Sakhir, maximising these final laps before we move on with the proper Bahrain GP next week. Overall, it has been a good day, despite the red flag that disrupted the running a bit but I enjoyed every single lap in the car today. We tested a lot of different configurations to collect as much data as possible.
The car seems to be in a decent place and I’m proud of the work that the team has done to complete such a solid test programme.

Red Bull: The feeling is very positive

Checo Perez out on track with Hard tyres on during Bahrain testing.

Max Verstappen: “Overall it was a very good Friday. We focused on the long running to get more of an understanding of the car and it was good to see the performance of the car was very strong. We made the plan to not focus on pure lap time and tried different compounds, so I am happy with the laps that we did. As we head into the race weekend it is all about fine tuning the car and also seeing what the race throws at you when you push the car to the limit. We now need to look into the data a bit more and try to come up with a plan for the week ahead. We’ve had a really positive test and we have learned a lot from everything we changed, so we are looking forward to next week.”

Sergio Perez: “It has been a good start to the year for the Team, we have got plenty of mileage over the last few days. The run programme that we put together was very good and meant we really made the most out of the days. Now it is time to look forward to the race next weekend, I have a good feeling in the car, so let’s see once we get to race it, but the feeling is very positive.”

Mercedes: We’re in a much better position than 12 months ago

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George Russell: “We’ve had a solid three days here in Bahrain. We managed to get through all of our planned programme, despite the stoppages. The car has been handling well and correlates to the feeling we had on the simulator ahead of coming here. We’ve got a very good base to build from. We’re aware that there’s a lot more lap time to find. We knew that would be the case ahead of the test, and Red Bull are looking very strong once again. Nevertheless, I’m confident that we’re in a much better place than we were 12 months ago. The team at Brackley and Brixworth have done a great job to get us into this position and with a car that is a step in the right direction. We now need to focus on firstly getting the most out of the package we have and secondly, adding more downforce and trying to close that gap.

Lewis Hamilton: Overall, it’s been a really good test. I’m really proud of everyone trackside and those back at the factory. Every single woman and man has been working tirelessly, both at Brackley, Brixworth, and here in Bahrain. It’s massively encouraging and great to see everyone working so well together. The focus, determination, and communication is the best I’ve ever seen. We know we’ve got work to do and we’re not yet where we want to be. We knew that would be the case coming into the test though. We’ve got a great platform to build on. We’ll go away and work hard over the next couple of days to go through all the data from the test. I’m excited for the start of the season next week and we’ll be heading into it in good shape.”

Andrew Shovlin, Trackside Engineering Director: “We’ve had three useful days here in Bahrain and managed to make good progress understanding the W15. Compared to last year’s car, the feedback from the drivers is very different and more positive, which is encouraging. The team has worked hard to iron out the handling flaws that were integral to the W14, and it’s great that we seem to have put a number of those problems behind us. Over the course of the test we’ve made good steps on our understanding of the car. The task of the next few days is to pick through the results and put together the best package to take into the race weekend. It’s never easy to make predictions on pace from testing, as all teams are quite effective at hiding their pace when they want to. It’s clear that we are in a much better position than 12 months ago though. We’ve got a busy few days ahead now making our final preparations for the season-opener, and we’re already looking forward to the race weekend and the season ahead.”

McLaren: We will find out where we are in qualifying

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Lando Norris: “Final day of testing done. I’m happy with what we’ve achieved over the last three days and feeling ready for the start of the season. We encountered one or two setbacks here and there, but that is to be expected during pre-season testing. The important thing is we have a good understanding of the car now, we have plenty of data to go over and will come back stronger for the race next weekend. Overall, positive signs and we have a better understanding of the work we have to do. Bring on race week!”

Oscar Piastri: “That’s the end of testing. We had a smooth, fun session today and got plenty of laps on the board, which was good. We’re in decent shape and more or less where we expected to be, but we still have some work to do. It was useful to get some race sim work done today, we rarely get to practice doing races in testing, so it was nice to have that opportunity. We’ll see what everybody’s got next week and that will give much more of an indication as to where we are. I’m excited and ready for the first race.”

Andrea Stella, Team Principal: “Over the last two seasons, winter testing has been inconsistent with several reliability issues, and we didn’t feel we approached the first race very prepared. This year the situation is much improved, we approached pre-season testing more prepared and this confirms the positive journey of the team. Having said that, we couldn’t do all of the laps that we had planned due to red flags, a fuel system problem yesterday and another problem today. We can improve further, but it’s been a positive few days overall.

“Going into the Bahrain Grand Prix we have to be prudent because some teams seem to have made a good step over the winter and Bahrain is not the ideal track layout for our car. We will find out where we are in qualifying next Saturday. I would like to thank the entire team trackside, back in Woking, and our colleagues at HPP for their strong efforts and work throughout the test and in getting us to this point. It’s been a long few days but we now take the time to rest, reset and review everything ahead of the first race next week.”

Aston Martin: We have taken a step forward over the winter

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Fernando Alonso: “We have tried to learn as much as possible during this test and focused on ourselves. It would be nice to have the predictions and knowledge of where everyone is but that is not the case in testing. The AMR24 is a step forward from last year and we just have to see how big of a step forward we have taken compared to everybody else. We will know more next week after Qualifying. It was good to get a number of laps on the board over the three days and I feel fit and ready to go for the start of the new season.”

Lance Stroll: “It’s great to be out in Bahrain for testing – I’m especially pleased to be here after missing last year’s pre-season test. Time in the car is so valuable for all of us: we’re gathering data and learning about the AMR24 with every lap we complete. We’ve made good use of these days to run a lot of parts and set-ups – the car feels better every day – and we’ve not had any reliability issues. It’s still too early to make any big predictions, but I’m looking forward to first race of the year next week.”

Mike Krack, Team Principal: “A successful test from our perspective. We have focused on our programme and gradually worked through the usual system checks and test items. The AMR24 has run reliably and we have a good understanding of how the car is working. We have validated that we have taken a step forward over the winter – delivering gains and performance in key areas. It is a long season ahead and we have multiple projects in development – some of which are very promising. We respect the competition, and this test has demonstrated that the whole grid will be incredibly close this season – but we are excited for what is ahead. I want to thank the test team at the track and everyone back at the AMRTC for getting us fully prepared for the start of the season. Everyone is looking forward to going racing next weekend.”

Alpine: We know where we stand

alpine testing f1 bahrain

Esteban Ocon: “Overall, it was a productive three-day test for us, probably one of the strongest during my time at the team. Since I jumped in the car, from Day 1 everything has been faultless and strong from an operational standpoint. The car has been working reliably and we managed to complete our testing programme. We improved the car and made progress from the first day to the last day. But we have a lot of work to do and it’s going to be interesting now to go through all the data and understand where we can make improvements. Three days of testing is short for a new car, so there’s still a lot to learn and extract from our package. Thanks to everyone at the team here, at Enstone and Viry for the long hours over the winter. Now it’s time to go racing.”

Pierre Gasly: “We did a lot of testing this week and now we have an important week coming up where we will go through all the data and continue our understanding of this new car concept. It’s vital to learn all about the entire package and understanding how we can optimise it. On my side, it’s been quite tricky at times especially as we missed out on some running both yesterday and today. The red flag was unfortunate on Day 2, then this afternoon we had the wheel brow coming loose from the car and that meant we missed a couple of laps at the end. Still, it’s been a productive test for the team across the last three days and that is most important. I’m definitely excited for the first race.”

Bruno Famin, Team Principal: “It’s been a solid three-day test for the team where we’ve focused on ourselves and committed to a comprehensive and important test programme. We have been operationally strong all week and demonstrated great teamwork between both factories and the trackside team, which has been good to see. Our reliability has been good and that has enabled us to complete our test plan as expected. Now is the time to work through the data and concentrate on optimising the package we have in our hands ahead of next week’s first Grand Prix. We know where we stand. We are expecting a challenging start to the year as we continue to learn more and more about our A524 to develop it across the season.”

VCARB: We focused our efforts on quality testing

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Yuki Tsunoda: “Testing went fairly smooth. We didn’t exactly follow our run programme as there were some issues with the track, but we responded well to them. I felt the car has made a good step forward compared to last year, so I’m happy with it so far. The balance has improved, and especially the front felt strong. We still have to find more with the rear, but it’s moving in the right direction. I completed many laps over the last couple of days and it was a good experience that allowed us to collect good data and help find the limit of the car. Looking at the timesheet, we’re not last, but it’s difficult to know where we are compared to the rest of the field, so I’m excited to start racing again next week.”

Daniel Ricciardo: “I think testing has been good and we’ve definitely developed the car from last year. I completed plenty of laps and feel pretty fit. Unfortunately, there were some issues on track with the drain, and we were worried we wouldn’t get our race run in, but luckily, we did. I did some short runs on Day 1 and 2 and race simulation this morning. In terms of performance, I think we’re where we expected to be. We’re aiming to fight in the midfield group and we’ll try to make the most of what we got. Overall, it was a smooth test, so I don’t think we leave here with any concerns. We made some gains and know where we are, but if we want to make sure to fight for Q3 and points consistently, there’s certainly a bit more we need to find.”

Peter Bayer, CEO: “It was great to see the Visa Cash App RB come alive in all its beauty and for the team to come back together, fully motivated and happy to push with the new identity. We’re also happy to see the positive reaction of our fans, whom we thank for their continuous support. Now, after a very productive three-day test, we have lots of data to analyse, and I think that’ll help us be well-prepared for next week’s first race of the season here in Bahrain.”

Laurent Mekies, Team Principal: “It’s been a great moment to see the Visa Cash App RB team officially hitting the track for the first time. We have a fantastic group of people from the factories in Faenza, Bicester and also from our PU partner Honda, and it has been a privilege to work alongside them for the first time at the racetrack. Of course, we have a long path ahead to build and develop our team to the level of competitiveness we want to target. However, we have started in a positive manner in Bahrain this week and executed a solid programme which will be key to our in-season development. There’s no doubt that Race 1 will jump at us very quickly now, and we certainly have a lot of work to do to be prepared at the level we want to be at. Finally, I would like to thank Daniel, Yuki, and everyone from our factories for the hard work and the fantastic spirit shown so far. We can’t wait to be back next week and start racing!”

Alan Permane, Racing Director: “It’s definitely been a positive three days for us. The car has run very reliably all week, and we’ve gathered a huge amount of data. We focused our efforts on quality testing, taking time to do setup changes and understanding the car. We’ve mixed that with some long runs and did a full race distance with Daniel today, which went faultlessly. We’ll now use the upcoming days to analyse the data we’ve collected and learn from it, to take not only into the Bahrain race weekend but of course, the upcoming races. I’m super happy to be here and really looking forward to this season. I’ve found an analytical team that I feel uses what we’ve gathered to move the car and team forward. Everyone here at Visa Cash App RB is very excited about the upcoming season, and we look forward to finding out more about the pecking order after next weekend’s race.”

Haas: Feels like we’ve made a step in the right direction

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Team Report: With the start of the 2024 FIA Formula 1 World Championship just over one week away, MoneyGram Haas F1 Team rounded out pre-season testing with another productive day at the Bahrain International Circuit. Kevin Magnussen and Nico Hulkenberg strengthened the team’s lap tally by an additional 169 tours on Friday to make a final total of 441 laps – 2,386.70 kilometers (1483.03 miles) recorded across the three days prior to the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix February 29 – March 2.

Ayao Komatsu, Team Principal: “We completed our first qualifying sim, looking at the low-fuel car balance, and then we completed two race simulations – one with Kevin, one with Nico. We successfully achieved all of this, despite the track issues today. It’s been a very, very good day basically. Our race simulations show that yes, we’ve got lots more work to do, but at the same time we’ve got a base car that we can actually race. Considering the qualifying performance – we haven’t worked on it at all, today was our first time looking at it, but again, it was decent. We’ve had a very good start to the season with all this preparation in testing. I’m very happy and my thanks to everyone on the team.”

Kevin Magnussen: “You never get all the answers you need and you always want more time, as three days of testing – and splitting those days with two drivers – is limiting. Given the limited time, I think we’ve done a lot, got some good impressions of the car and the focus is trying to be good on Sunday. We’ve been doing a lot of high-fuel race running, trying to address that issue, and I think we’re going somewhere. We haven’t fixed the issue completely but hopefully it’s enough to make a difference on Sunday. I expect it to be very close between all teams again this year.”

Nico Hulkenberg: “Today we got through the program and did what we wanted to do, so that was good. We completed a race run as well – I haven’t seen it compared to anyone else’s – but now we’ve got lots of impressions after three days of testing, lots of data and things to analyze. We’ve been able to do some experiments like most, as that’s what you do in testing, and it’s been good, positive. I have no idea where we stand, or what it’s worth, but we’ll get that answer in a week. It’s early days, but from in the car, from where I sit, if I compare the car to last year, it does feel better and like we’ve made a step in the right direction.”

Williams: A solid start and have a good foundation to build on

albon williams f1 test

Dave Robson, Head of Vehicle Performance: We had a good day to complete the pre-season test. We did another 120 laps and this time without any car issues. Alex was able to build on the work done by Logan yesterday and continued to evolve the FW46. Across a range of fuel loads, the car was behaving well, and Alex was able to complete a decent race simulation using two of the tyre compounds that will be available next week. Inevitably at this time of year, there is a lot of scope to push the FW46 harder and to develop it quickly. We have a few days to analyse the data from this week and decide how we build the cars for FP1 and how we look to introduce the first round of car updates. There is a lot to do but we have made a solid start and have a good foundation to build on.

Alex Albon: Firstly, we’ve got a decent car to go racing with. I do think we struggled a little bit with the car across day one and two with just how different it is, struggling to rebalance it, but we made some big headway in making the car more driveable. With the changing car characteristics, we shifted some of our historical problems to different areas. Still, we’ve been able to fix some of these but unfortunately in the process, we’ve picked up a few things we didn’t like. Despite this, we did a bit of a radical set-up today and this worked out for the better. Looking at the rest of the grid, the midfield has closed up a lot with everyone making a big jump from last year, so it’s all quite equal throughout the field. This year is going to be all about the fine details and potential tracks that better suit others, so there are going to be lots of interesting battles.

Sauber: The feeling at the end of testing is positive

stake f1 testing

Team Report: Stake F1 Team Kick Sauber completed the final day of pre-season testing with a busy day at the Bahrain International Circuit. Zhou Guanyu and Valtteri Bottas’s 113 laps brought the team’s tally to 380 laps for three days of testing, amounting to 2,056.56 kilometres in total. The data collected throughout the three days will now be thoroughly analysed by the team, as part of the final preparations ahead of next week’s season opener, the 2024 Bahrain Grand Prix.

James Key, Technical Director: “We have learned a lot throughout these three days of testing. We had a very logical approach; much like every other team we came with a list of items we wanted to tick off, and many new bits we wanted to get to know better. I believe we managed to go through them all. The C44 ran as it should, completing about 380 laps across three days – a testament to the good job done by the team back home in Hinwil during the winter. Everything seemed to be running as expected – there were no surprises in the garage, and despite having to cut Valtteri’s session short earlier today due to the red flag and to run some precautionary checks, we still managed to achieve all that we had planned for the day. Overall, it’s been three productive days full of learnings for our team, and all the data gathered will provide a solid foundation to work on ahead of the first race of the season. Of course, there’s no point talking about lap times, as each team had its own priorities during testing, and we will surely learn more about each other’s performance next week. Still, the feeling at the end of testing is positive, and we’ll be aiming to move forward in this direction throughout the season.”

Valtteri Bottas: “Today was a bit more challenging as the red flag cost us quite some running time. Ending the session with some precautionary checks resulted in a few missed test items and laps, but we still managed to get through our planned priorities. We were able to learn more about the C44 and we feel reasonably prepared for next week’s race. It’s still quite difficult to evaluate the true performance and the competitive field, but we are confident in the data we collected. Now, it’s all about analysing, learning and improving ahead of the race weekend.”

Zhou Guanyu: “We had another good day where we focused a lot on our long runs and managed to complete a second full race distance. We got through our programme and experimented with various setups and configurations to draw our conclusions. It’s challenging to evaluate the full potential, especially with a completely new car, and we’ll continue working and making strides over the next few days to be ready for the upcoming weekend. However, the true performance and how we rank compared to the other teams is yet to be seen until the first qualifying and race. We feel good and will use the remaining days to learn and find margins for improvement.”