78 laps and P3 round up Max' Abu Dhabi test

Published on 26 November 2014 by Stefan Meens

Max Verstappen finished the second and final day of the collective Formula 1 test at the Yas Marina Circuit in third. Despite the good lap times, the two-day test session in Abu Dhabi was not about fastest laps but about valuable track time. With 78 laps completed on Wednesday, Max’ total tally after two days of driving comes to an impressive 133 laps and an equally useful 459 miles.

Max reflects: “We had a very good morning with a lot of running, which allowed us to test quite a few new things on the car in preparation for next year. We had the possibility to go through the intense programme that we had planned, to catch up from yesterday without delays or hitches. I really enjoyed spending four hours without getting out of the car; it was a great feeling.”

Max begins the second day of testing with several seven-lap runs. His fastest time set in one of the stints, a 1:45.222, tops the timing sheets for almost three hours. After completing 63 laps, the Dutchman heads into the afternoon break in second, with Mercedes’ Pascal Wehrlein taking over P1.

The afternoon session does not start well for the Toro Rosso. Its Renault engine calls it a day, accompanied by smoke and flames, ruling Max out for most of the session. Nevertheless, the Toro Rosso mechanics put in a momentous shift and the 17-year-old is able to hit the track for another 45 minutes at the end of the day.

Max: “Unfortunately in the afternoon we had a power unit issue which stopped us for quite a while, but we managed to fix the problem in time to go out again before the end of the session, getting some more useful driving time. I want to thank the team for everything they have done to make these two days a great start to the new season together.”

Max manages to improve on his morning lap time and with a 1:43.763, he finishes the day in third, behind GP2 winner and Ferrari protégé Raffaele Marciello and Silver Arrow Wehrlein.

Chief Race Engineer Phil Charles is also pleased with his team’s progress: “We had a very productive day, especially in the morning, when we ran continuously, even squeezing in an extra run before lunch. However, at the start of the afternoon, a technical problem kept the car in the garage for around three hours. The mechanics worked really well to get the car back out on track and we even woke up some of our nightshift guys to come and help!"

“Thanks to their efforts we managed to give Max a further three runs. He has really got stuck into his learning programme over these past two days, doing long and short runs and finding out a lot about tyre management. Overall, this has been a good end to our time on track in 2014”, concludes the Toro Rosso man.

Results Official FIA Formula 1 test – Abu Dhabi – Wednesday 26 November:

Pos Driver              Team                  Time              Laps
 1  Pascal Wehrlein     Mercedes              1:42.624   -        96
 2  Raffaele Marciello  Ferrari               1:43.208   0.584    91
 3  Max Verstappen      Toro Rosso/Renault    1:43.763   1.139    78
 4  Marcus Ericsson     Sauber/Ferrari        1:44.551   1.927   112
 5  Will Stevens        Caterham/Renault      1:44.888   2.264    76
 6  Richard Goddard     Force India/Mercedes  1:44.944   2.320    89
 7  Daniel Ricciardo    Red Bull/Renault      1:45.151   2.527    88
 8  Felipe Nasr         Williams/Mercedes     1:45.937   3.313    83
 9  Alex Lynn           Lotus/Renault         1:46.168   3.544    52
10  Esteban Ocon        Lotus/Renault         1:47.013   4.389    34
11  Stoffel Vandoorne   McLaren/Honda         -          -         2

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