Honda has completed its second test with the new TC1-spec Civic with a four-day session in Barcelona ahead of the 2014 World Touring Car Championship season.
Gabriele Tarquini spent three days at the wheel of the car before handing over to team-mate Tiago Monteiro as the JAS Motorsport-run team put more miles on the car it will use to take the fight to Citroen during the year ahead.
“Thanks to the nice weather we were able to complete a few long runs over the race distance that were especially interesting for learning how to manage the tyres,” chief designer Andrea Adamo said. “On top of this, the warm temperatures of air and tarmac gave us valuable figures for the cooling of the car and the tyres.”
The Catalunya test marked the first real opportunity for Monteiro to get behind the wheel of the car with the initial running having been carried out by Tarquini, with the Portuguese racer impressed with his first taste of the new model.
“It's a beast of a machine!” he said. “I am so excited about this new regulations that make a brand new championship! It's a fresh start, with completely new cars and rules. It's so much fun to drive and more difficult to go to the limits. It's going to be very exciting. It's also a technical challenge as we have to go through a whole new range of setups and ideas.
“We fear nobody, but we have a huge respect for our competitors and we don't underestimate anyone. We all start from a new, blank sheet of paper. So anything can happen.
“Of course we expect Citroen to be a strong competitor. They have the budget and have been on track since many months now with the new car, so there is no doubt they have an advantage. But that's the game, and we will have to deal with it and give them and the others a good fight.”