Ferrari's Raffaele Marciello said he pushed “really hard” throughout his day testing for Ferrari in Abu Dhabi because he felt he had to for Jules Bianchi.
Marciello made his Ferrari F1 debut at the Yas Marina Circuit
at the end of his first season in GP2, but the opportunity to test arose following Jules Bianchi's accident at Suzuka in October. With Bianchi having tested for Ferrari earlier this year and likely to have done so again in Abu Dhabi, Marciello said he felt he had to push as a result.
“I'm here because Jules is not here, actually, but he always did his best and always tried hard,” Marciello said. “So I wanted to push really hard for him and I think if someone would push really hard but is not here and not able to then you have to do the same.”
Reflecting on his first day in the car, Marciello said it had been “like a dream” to finally drive for Ferrari in F1.
“I enjoyed a lot driving a Formula One car. I did a lot of kilometres also so I'm really happy about that because when you are out there you want to do a lot. I did everything like quite long runs so I'm really happy I did everything I could.
“It was really emotional in the morning; for an Italian guy to drive a Ferrari is like a dream so I was really happy.”
And Marciello said it had been a relatively trouble-free day for Ferrari on Wednesday despite testing being interrupted by five red flags.
“I'm quite tall so luckily it was quite comfortable. I did a lot of kilometres, almost 100 laps without any problems and the car was really good to drive. We didn't have any problems in the car and we did all the program we wanted to.”