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Magnussen tops day one at Silverstone

17 July 2013

Kevin Magnussen topped the times for McLaren on the opening day of the Young Driver Test at Silverstone.

The young Dane – son of former McLaren driver Jan – was the busiest driver on track in warm conditions at the Northamptonshire circuit, wracking up 100 laps at the wheel of the much-maligned MP4-28.

Magnussen had been ninth quickest during the morning before improving his times during the afternoon, lowering the benchmark time for the day down to 1min 33.602secs.

That time, set in the closing half an hour of track time, saw Magnussen end up a tenth of a second quicker than Paul di Resta, who was one of two race drivers on track sampling the new tyres that will be used for the first time in the Hungarian Grand Prix in Budapest later this month.

“This is the first time I'd driven at Silverstone in a Formula 1 car, and it was a fantastic experience," Magnussen said. "We covered a lot of mileage – almost two race distances – and, given there isn't a great deal of testing these days, that opportunity was invaluable.

"The process of providing feedback to the engineers about the car, and testing new set-ups can only make me a stronger driver. I have to thank Vodafone McLaren Mercedes for giving me this opportunity, and I'm going to apply everything I've learned today.

"Getting a taste in the car only makes me more hungry to one day realise my ambition of racing in the highest level of motorsport. Without a doubt I learnt a great deal today."

Di Resta only ran during the afternoon session for Force India having taken over at lunchtime from GP2 front-runner James Calado.

The Briton had produced an impressive performance to lead the way during the morning before his time at the wheel of the VJM06 came to an end, and he would end the day with the fourth best time behind Antonio Felix Da Costa's Red Bull – the Portuguese racer finishing up third on the times having traded top spot for during the afternoon with di Resta.

“It was nice to get the full day's running, especially here,” da Costa said. “If there's a circuit where you really feel that you're in an F1 car it's here at Silverstone, with all these fast corners. It something completely different and something you have to get used to but it was a great day, a great feeling.

“In terms of the work, it was a good day. Obviously, it's not the first time for me in a Red Bull car, so everything is sort of familiar. It's an important test for the team and my job is simply to drive consistently and not make mistakes. I think we achieved the goal of being consistent and working through the programme.”

Despite losing time for bodywork repairs during the morning, Spaniard Daniel Juncadella was fifth quickest for Williams – half a second off the outright pace – while Johnny Cecotto rounded out the top six for Toro Rosso.

Robin Frijns was the final man to lap within a second of the quickest time in seventh, with the top ten being completed by Nicolas Prost, Davide Rigon and Alexander Rossi – the latter seeing his day ended slightly early by a hydraulics issue.

“It's been a productive day and I think we're all pleased we've completed such a good number of laps,” the American reflected, despite the problem. “Obviously for me today was another piece of the F1 jigsaw, adding more experience of the 2013 car on top of the Canadian GP FP1 session I did in June, but really my main priority was helping the team continue the push towards the cars ahead.

“After the installation lap we were straight into the program, running through a number of test items in both the morning and afternoon sessions that will help the team in the coming races. We didn't have any reliability issues until late in the day when we had a hydraulics problem and that unfortunately meant I didn't have a chance to put in a really quick lap, but we were still able to complete most of the day's plan and that's good, for the team and for me as it means we have both got pretty much everything we could from day one of the test.”

Marussia duo Tio Ellinas and Max Chilton then rounded out the times, the latter seeing his time on track shortened by a mechanical issue on his car.

To view testing times, CLICK HERE.


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