Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas says the team are getting a better handle on how best to set up their new W10 after a productive second day of testing.
Both Mercedes drivers were in action in Barcelona on Tuesday, sharing driving duties. Reigning Champion Lewis Hamilton drove the morning session, with Valtteri Bottas taking over for the afternoon.
It was the Finn who ended up with the quicker laptime by the day’s end, by 0.4 seconds over Hamilton. Bottas put in a 1:19.535 on the C3 tyre, Hamilton a 1:19.928 on the same compound. Their mileage counts were quite similar, with Bottas clocking up 89 laps; Hamilton 74.
“We did a lot of laps today and again managed to complete our run plan.” said Bottas after the session.
Mercedes appear to be taking slightly longer than Ferrari to understand how best to set up their new car, and Bottas says the team are learning with every minute they’re on the track: “We’re learning a lot about the W10 with each run and we’re building a better understanding of the set-up. The car was better balanced than yesterday, but there’s still a bit of room for improvement. As you can tell from the lap times, we’ve been focusing on long-run work. I’ll be in the car tomorrow morning, so it will be a busy evening for me, taking in all the learnings from today. It’s been a pretty normal test so far; fortunately, the car has been very reliable, so that’s good news.”
Hamilton was also pleased with the team’s work on Tuesday, saying: “It’s been a good day overall. It was quite cold in the morning, so switching the tyres on was a little bit tricky, but it seemed like a few people had similar issues. We were focusing on working through our run plan and we got through everything we wanted. It’s good that we’re getting in a lot of mileage and we will try to increase that over the next days as we continue to discover the characteristics of this car.”