9 March 2012
Teams set for first race in Sepang
"For sure I am going into Malaysia confident," he said. "Of course it is a different story at a race weekend with only half an hour practice, but I have driven there once before and it's quite a nice track. It'll be very hot, but I am ready, let's get it on."
Technical director Humphrey Corbett was a little more cautious in his reading of the pre-season testing. "It is so hard to tell what people are doing with fuel and tyres during testing, so I think Malaysia will be a great leveller. Both drivers know the circuit and I am really looking forward to getting out there!"
Over at iSport, team principal Paul Jackson said that he and his team were looking forward to the first race at Sepang with guarded optimism.
"The team have had a good test in Barcelona and worked through a comprehensive programme, trying many options and understanding the tyre characteristics," he went on. "Both drivers had some impressive race simulations and have worked well together and are proving to be closely matched."
Although Jolyon Palmer and Marcus Ericsson didn't pick up any fastest times during the six days of testing in total, they both proved competitive on pace throughout and generally one or both of the drivers was to be found in the top ten by the end of a session.
Scuderia Coloni could say much the same of their own driver line-up, consisting of Stefano Coletti and Fabio Onidi.
"We leave Barcelona with the feeling that we really did a good job, trying many different things and getting the answers we were expecting in most of the cases," said team boss Paolo Coloni. "Looking at the six days of testing we did here and in Jerez, we were always in the high part of the timesheets."
From the point of view of the driver's seat, Coletti said that he too was happy with what they'd achieved, especially after setting the second fastest time on the final afternoon when concentrating on race distance set-ups and simulations. "We did not specifically seek the performance but I am happy anyway on setting the second fastest time," he said.
"We completed the scheduled work without problems; data and results confirmed what was already seen last week in Jerez," he continued. "Overall, the six pre-championship testing days have been really fruitful and allowed us to lay the foundations of a good result in Malaysia in two weeks time."
Racing Engineering similarly said that their drivers, Fabio Leimer and Nathanaël Berthon, were similarly focused on gathering data that would be analysed in depth before Sepang, rather than about going after fastest times.
"We didn't simulate qualifying when the track here was at its quickest, as the others did," pointed out Berthon. "We waited for the track to be as hot as possible. For sure we still need a bit more performance, but I think it will be okay in Malaysia."
Giedo van der Garde
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