Kimi Raikkonen of Ferrari set the pace on the final session of Formula One preseason testing Friday, while Mercedes ran the most laps over the eight days at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya. Kimi’s lap of 1 minute, 17.221 seconds came within 0.039 seconds of the unofficial track record set by his teammate Sebastian Vettel the previous day. Both times were set on the fast ”hypersoft” tires introduced this season. The track was also resurfaced in January, hindering comparisons to previous times. Times set in testing are not considered official.
The Finnish driver rattled off 157 laps, the best of them in 1’17”221, as Scuderia Ferrari’s programme included set-up work and a race simulation, running different types of tyre and fuel loads. This was the hottest day of the entire two weeks of testing, with temperatures over 20° and the track around the 37 mark.
“Overall, I feel we have a good package.” – was Kimi’s assessment. – “For sure the weather at the start of testing wasn’t ideal, but we have finished with a couple of pretty good days. The car gives me a good feeling and, even if there are still a lot of things to improve, its reasonably easy to drive and it reacts to the various set-up changes. However, no one can say where we really are, compared to our rivals. We’ll have a better idea in a couple of weeks in Melbourne and then, in general, after the first few races of the season. I like racing and I can’t wait to start.” – the Finnish driver concluded.
Over the two test sessions, the Scuderia Ferrari drivers covered a total of 929 laps (286 for Kimi Raikkonen and 643 for Sebastian Vettel), which is the equivalent to 4324 kilometres.