Daily Archives: March 9, 2011

Barcelona Day 6: Vettel keeps Red Bull on top

Vettel kept Red Bull on top

Vettel kept Red Bull on top

Red Bull continued to lead the testing at Barcelona today, as Sebastian Vettel led the rest of the field.

A time of 1.21.865 was the quickest yet of testing this year, and the world champion was half a second ahead of Sebastien Buemi, who completed an impressive 120 laps today, despite causing a red flag and stopping for several pit stop practice sessions.

Vitaly Petrov was another to cause a red flag. Still replacing the ill Nick Heidfeld, a 4-lap run ensured him 3rd place. It was a very difficult day for McLaren, as two exhaust failures and a hydraulic leak delayed Lewis Hamilton, although a single one-lap run got him up to 4th.

A new exhaust system was being tested by Massa in the Ferrari, and his longer run pace suggested he was keeping up well with the Red Bulls. However his short-fuel runs were less impressive, leaving him 5th.

Another red flag was caused by a fuel pressure problem for Paul di Resta, who was 6th, leading Kamui Kobayashi. Bodywork and exhaust changes did not improve Mercedes’ pace, as Nico Rosberg was down in 8th, and 3.9 seconds off the pace.

Jarno Trulli put his Lotus in 9th place. KERS issues severely hampered Williams’ day, limiting Pastor Maldonado to 29 laps all day. He only managed to get out of the garage after disconnecting the KERS unit. Jerome D’Ambrosio was again well off the pace, and headed up the back of the field.

Times from Barcelona Day 6:

Pos  Driver             Team                  Time       Gap    Laps
 1.  Sebastian Vettel   Red Bull-Renault      1.21.865          112
 2.  Sebastien Buemi    Toro Rosso-Ferrari    1.22.396   0.531  120
 3.  Vitaly Petrov      Renault               1.22.670   0.805  116
 4.  Lewis Hamilton     McLaren-Mercedes      1.22.888   1.023  57
 5.  Felipe Massa       Ferrari               1.23.324   1.459  101
 6.  Paul di Resta      Force India-Mercedes  1.24.334   2.469  118
 7.  Kamui Kobayashi    Sauber-Ferrari        1.24.436   2.571  107
 8.  Nico Rosberg       Mercedes              1.25.807   3.942  100
 9.  Jarno Trulli       Lotus-Renault         1.26.090   4.225  98
10.  Pastor Maldonado   Williams-Cosworth     1.26.989   5.124  29
11.  Jerome D'Ambrosio  Virgin-Cosworth       1.28.982   7.117  64

Liuzzi confirmed at Hispania for 2011

Liuzzi is the last of the 24 drivers to be announced for 2011

Liuzzi is the last of the 24 drivers to be announced for 2011

Vitantonio Liuzzi has been announced as Hispania Racing’s second driver for the 2011 season.

He is the final driver to take his place on the grid, and he will race alongside Narain Karthikeyan this year.

Christian Klien was also in the running for the final slot, but Liuzzi was confirmed by the team today. Team principal Colin Kolles stated:

"Tonio is a very professional driver who will bring a lot of benefits to the team.

I have known Tonio for many years as he raced with me in lower categories.

I am convinced about his skills to develop a car and his speed. He has shown this in 
the past having contributed to a large extend developing and moving a back grid car 
to the front. I had the pleasure of working with him and I am very happy and proud 
to have him racing with Hispania Racing.”

Vitantonio lost his race seat at Force India early this year, despite having a contract to race with them this year. He has said that he had “never lost hope” fighting to stay in F1:

“I am really happy to have signed this agreement with Hispania Racing.

I never lost hope to be in Formula One as I knew I have the experience and the 
right attributes for a young and ambitious team. I face a new challenge now and 
this excites me.

I also face a lot of hard work in guiding Hispania Racing through the development 
of our new car. I am extremely grateful to José Ramon Carabante and to Colin 
Kolles for giving me such an opportunity.”

In a separate announcement, HRT have stated that they will present their 2011 car and drivers on Friday afternoon in Barcelona.