Webber fastest in rain-hit Barcelona test

2013 F1 season

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Mark Webber, Red Bull, Circuit de Catalunya, 2013Mark Webber was quickest for Red Bull as rain returned to the Circuit de Catalunya.

Persistent showers played havoc with teams’ plans as testing resumed in Spain.

Intermediate and wet-weather tyres were used throughout the morning on a track that started damp and was doused by fresh rain.

Romain Grosjean caused a red flag early in the day when he skidded off the slippery track on his fifth lap. Later Esteban Gutierrez caused another interruption when he went off at turn three.

Only in the second half of the afternoon session did the track dry sufficiently for slick tyres to be used.

With less than half an hour to go the red flag came out again when Felipe Massa stopped at Campsa. The Ferrari driver had covered over 100 laps during the test.

Webber traded fastest times with Lewis Hamilton in the final minutes but ended up ahead and increased his margin over the Mercedes driver to 1.6 seconds.

By the end of the test the track had dried enough that Webber was able to get within a second of the best time seen last week – Sergio Perez’s 1’21.848.

More rain is expected at the circuit tomorrow with most teams swapping their drivers overnight.

DriverCarBest timeLapsDifferenceTyres
1Mark WebberRed Bull-Renault RB91’22.69390Soft
2Lewis HamiltonMercedes W041’24.3481131.655Medium
3Jean-Eric VergneToro Rosso-Ferrari STR81’25.017592.324Medium
4Valtteri BottasWilliams-Renault FW351’26.458853.765Soft
5Sergio PerezMcLaren-Mercedes MP4-281’26.5381003.845Hard
6Esteban GutierrezSauber-Ferrari C321’26.574923.881Soft
7Paul di RestaForce India-Mercedes VJM061’27.107574.414Medium
8Felipe MassaFerrari F1381’27.5411124.848Medium
9Max ChiltonMarussia-Cosworth MR021’28.166785.473Medium
10Charles PicCaterham-Renault CT031’28.644835.951Medium
11Romain GrosjeanLotus-Renault E211’34.9285212.235Medium

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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36 comments on “Webber fastest in rain-hit Barcelona test”

  1. did hamilton raced for some odd 50 laps without pitting from lap 51 onward and setting some consistent lap times..??

    1. Yup, and on inters.

    2. Wasnt it set using inters?

    3. Seems the boys at Mercedes might be looking at a cold and wet race in China to add to their win tally!

    4. Lap71-72, lap90-91, he changed tyres twice.

  2. Webber set his time on a new set of soft tyres, whereas Hamilton was on mediums

    1. Aye, that could do with being pointed out in the article.

  3. @keithcollantine

    Webber traded fastest times with Lewis Hamilton in the final minutes but ended up ahead and increased his margin over the McLaren driver to 1.6 seconds.

    I think we all expected this to happen at some point this season… ;)

    1. LOL I’ve already done this a dozen times talking with friends….we’ll be hearing these slip ups all year :-)

    2. @bradley13 I knew someone would point it out before I did!

  4. It was nice to see Webber have a go at it in earnest at the end (also it was nice to actually SEE it), sure the time does not say anything, the track was not perfect and he was the only one out on the softs at that time. But it still gives us a better idea of their current form than anything we have seen before that.

    1. But it still gives us a better idea of their current form than anything we have seen before that.

      Err…. Does it?

      1. yes, because at least we know that he was out there to go as fast as possible, and not just doing a fixed lap time for example.

    2. @bascb, and what was the idea you got from seeing it ?

      1. Nothing surprising really, that they will be at the front

        1. So it actually looked good, thanks.

  5. Watched the Sky 3D coverage & it was as I was expecting.
    The head-on shots looked good but some of the panning shots as cars passed by a camera were less then impressive. Likewise while the higher shots worked well, the lower angles were not as good.

    The other thing that stood out to me was had bad some of the camera work was, Not sure what camera’s there using but they were really unsteady, Shaking about a lot & this caused them to lose focus ever so slightly when zooming/panning. This gave a bit of an amateur feel to it.

    They had a lap counter on the screen but it was kinda pointless as that was all they had, Didn’t give any gaps to the fastest lap, Didn’t tell you what position the driver was in & the lack of driver positions graphics made things hard to follow.

    Overall not something that interesting to watch but thats the nature of testing & isn’t a surprise having been at test’s in the past.

    1. Buxton tweeted that from the way they filmed it, he got the impression that it was the FOM crew manning the camera’s. Your take on that?

      1. It was a 100% sky effort with no FOM involvement (Hence why there was no F1 logo on screen as you see with all FOM footage).
        Having said that quite a few of the camera operators FOM use work freelance so not out of the question sky got them involved, However as I understood it they were planning to use there own people who have a lot of experience shooting in 3D.

        FOM have guys there getting footage but there working separately from the sky crew.

        As I said in my comment above, The camera work was a bit shakey so i’d be very surprised if they were using any Current/Ex-FOM camera operators.

        1. The thing is all camera operators use the same filming points on track, and it’s not hard for the Sky crew to analyse the FOM footage to see what they where doing with the cameras.

          But the images were a bit shaky. It needs some polishing from that point of view.

    2. Overall not something that interesting to watch but thats the nature of testing & isn’t a surprise having been at test’s in the past.

      to me the best (as in the only thing worth it) was actually hearing the cars doing some round and seeign something at least for the first time in the year.

      And I guess that when they have a dedicated channel available its the best way to bring up some interest in the coming season, get people to renew subscriptions, or take ones if they put up good package bundles etc. And maybe get the team up and running again after the winter break as well.
      And the interviews were pretty good too, although that too was in large part due to being the first F1 viewing of the season.

  6. Why is Kimi’s name not on the sheets?

    1. Same reason half the drivers aren’t on the sheets- there’s only a single car, so drivers typically do 2 of the 4 days.

    2. @aish – yep @matt90‘s correct: the teams are only allowed to run one car for cost reasons. Kimi’s in the car for the last two days.

      1. Oh ok thank you and to you too @matt90. I am not much conversant at how pre season practice works. Sorry for sounding stupid.

        1. @aish

          I am not much conversant at how pre season practice works. Sorry for sounding stupid.

          Not at all – I’m always happy to help! I would also warn you though that since you are not entirely sure of the workings of pre-season testing not to take the times seriously: we don’t know the fuel loads or the programme they are running to so times aren’t necessarily representative.

  7. I’m sorry to upset this whole “Hamilton’s not gonna perform well” thing, but the W04 really doesn’t look all that bad. The really useful Sky coverage provided me with something arguably more useful than the times; seeing the handling of the car on track. And with the exception of Hamilton’s spin on cold tyres, the W04 looked pretty planted. OK, there seems to be a lack of downforce, so Hamilton couldn’t carry Red Bull speeds through the corners, but it seems nicely balanced, so Mercedes seem to have cured their Jerez understeer issues. Also, the times look good and so do the tyres after his runs. Got a spare ten quid? I’d put it on Lewis to win the Chinese GP. Something else stood out to me, the Lotus is twitchy on exit. I know it was wet conditions, but the car looked somewhat rear limited, so whilst the nose tucked in nicely, there was a whole heap of oversteer on exit. And this is from a man that struck me as being able to put the power down nicely throughout 2012. The McLaren is odd. Sometimes it looks every bit as planted as the Red Bull, but sometimes the car can just randomly snap when loaded in a high speed corner. The F138 is far more consistent and seems to be a pretty bloody good car, however it just seems to have that little bit less downforce than the Red Bull. However I expect Alonso to make up the deficit there. Gary Anderson, are you watching because I’m going to have a stab at working out some kind of order based on actual observations, not just hunches…
    1. Red Bull RB9 – Clearly the car is epic
    2. Ferrari F138 – Well balanced and consistent
    3. Lotus E21 – RB quick, but twitchy and difficult to drive
    4. Mercedes W04 – lacking in downforce but well-balanced
    5. McLaren MP4-28 – they’ve done an F2012, gone too revolutionary and lost all understanding in the process. If they can figure the car out and reach the car’s sweet spot consistently they’ll have a good chance at the title, if not though they may come under pressure from Williams
    6. Williams FW35 – Clearly a step forward from the FW34
    7. Sauber C32 – Another step forward, but occasionally twitchy
    8. Force India VJ06/Toro Rosso SRT8 – Really can’t choose between them
    9. Marussia MR02 – Probably the best “category B” car we’ve seen so far
    10. Caterham CT03 – Not only is it stomach-churningly ugly, its poorly balanced and lacking downforce

    1. @william-brierty – I wouldn’t go as far as to suggest the RB9 is “epic” but I agree I expect it to be the quickest car: Webber looked very fast and we haven’t likely even seen the best of it for this test yet. The Ferrari does seem a very solid car too, but I think Lotus will give them a run for there money – the E21 looks very quick as you’ve said and I’m sure they’ll cure the balance issues. I think too McLaren have perhaps overstepped the bar and may find themselves struggling for the first part of the season, but by mid season I’d expect them to have a faster car than Mercedes at least.

      The Brackley-based team are looking good, perhaps good enough for a couple of wins, but are still visibly not as fast as the Bulls, so they are realistically not going to be title contenders. Williams are looking solid, but Sauber are confusing me. They seem slightly erratic – perhaps a consequence of the unique design of their car also. With Hulkenberg though I do expect them to stay ahead of Force India and Toro Rosso. As for Caterham and Marussia, they just seem to be trading times, so it’s still game on there I think.

      Overall though you pretty much mimic my thoughts!

      1. I’m a little more optimistic about Mercedes’ chances mainly because they’ve barely done any running on the soft tires, & they’ve not been too far from the top of the time sheets regardless. I agree that RBR & Ferrari are looking better… possibly Lotus too, but the Merc’s not looking bad at all. Hopefully it translates to a good start to the season for them.

      2. @vettel1 I disagree with your analysis of Merc GP. I think yet again it is pandering to the media that “we aren’t good, don’t pay attention to us we will be top mid field at best watch the regular top runners.” Last year they had a very real issue with people wanting to figure out the double DRS early on and that caught too much attention I believe, I think Brawn rather catch the boys napping like he did in 09 and that is why they have downplayed themselves. I think Brawn and company have always been a group to get it done in the first half of the season and coast the remainder, but the difference here is the other massive group of engineers on Ross Brawn level working with them, they may be called upon at the half point to keep the car alive and active. Thus when the season is over they finish up the W05. Am I saying they are gonna win the WCC or a WDC this year no, but should we count them out no as well, we should look at the constant ability to run what they want in testing it seems and add a second or more to what they really will do during FP3 and more so in Quali. Just like I didn’t believe the McLaren was crap the years we were told so, I don’t fully believe the BS coming from Merc GP. It is a mind game, for the fans, media and other teams so no one turns to that side of the garage and says let’s go see what they are “really” up to.

        Also I think one thing can be said right away, with Hamilton and the W04 in his hands I think we know what the best rain car is at this moment in time. But the mainly dry setting I think the car is fast. I think Williams are also faster than they are putting on as well.

    2. You’re missing a team, @william-brierty :P

      1. @estesark they are all there…unless you are making a joke about HRT. He has Force India and Toro Rosso tied for the same spot right now.

        1. @magillagorilla – right you are. I missed that. Usually when two teams are tied, the next one should skip a number, e.g. Force India and Toro Rosso joint 8th, Marussia 10th. But my fault for not spotting it!

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