Sebastian Vettel set the fastest time of the 5thday of 2020 pre-season Formula 1 testing while defending champions Lewis Hamilton’s session ended early due to a suspected engine issue.
Vettel jumped to the top order in the morning with a time of 1:16.841 set on C5 compound Pirelli tires, and the Ferrari driver’s effort remained the benchmark until the end of running. AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly took second place with a late lap on the same compound with just 15 minutes left in the session to finish 0.225s behind Vettel. Racing Point’s Lance Stroll took third place with a lap of 1:17.118 on C3 tires from the morning session.
It was a tough day for Hamilton, however. Having taken over from team-mate Valtteri Bottas for the afternoon session, after the Finn had posted 47 laps of the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, Hamilton stayed put in the Mercedes garage for the first hour of the afternoon. The champion eventually took the track and set about the long run but that ended after 12 laps when he ground to a halt on the run to Turn 7.
Hamilton did not reappear again after that as Mercedes revealed the issue had been caused by an oil pressure problem.
With Stroll third, fourth place went to Williams’ Nicholas Latifi, with McLaren’s Lando Norris fifth. That left the sixth place to Max Verstappen. With the track damp after overnight rain, the Red Bull sat out the first hour of running and when he did go out on track he seemed to find the damp track and the strong winds tricky as he spun twice, the second bringing out the red flags midway through the morning.
With no damage sustained he returned to the action but only managed a total of 31 laps. Things went better for team-mate Alex Albon in the afternoon and the Thai driver was able to add 61 laps to the team’s total on his way to P10.
Bottas took seventh place with his morning best of 1:17.985 and that was a good enough to put him clear of Renault’s Esteban Ocon and ninth-placed Kevin Magnussen of Haas
2020 Formula 1 Pre-Season Test 2, Day 1
1 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:16.841s
2 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri 1:17.066s +0.225
3 Lance Stroll Racing Point 1:17.118s
4 Nicholas Latifi Williams 1:17.313s
5 Lando Norris McLaren 1:17.573s
6 Max Verstappen Red Bull 1:17.738s
7 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 1:17.985s
8 Esteban Ocon Renault 1:18.013s
9 Kevin Magnussen Haas 1:18.225s
10 Alex Albon Red Bull 1:18.393s
11 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 1:18.395s
12 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo 1:19.670s
13 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:22.425s