Red Bull’s rocky start to the 2014 pre-season has continued after another stop-start day plagued with technical issues.
Despite getting 32 laps in early on in the day, engineers spent the best part of the afternoon attempting to fix an on-board overheating problem. Daniel Ricciardo did eventually get out on the track again but only managed three laps in total before having to return to the garage.
Finally as the day was drawing to a close Red Bull managed to get the car out on the track again, but this time only four laps could be completed, and Ricciardo’s best time was well over two and a half seconds behind the pace setters. This meant that Red Bull had only completed 39 laps in total all day, resulting in further frustration for the team looking for their fifth victory in a row in the Constructors’ Championship.
Elsewhere, topping the time sheets on the first day was Force India’s Sergio Perez, with Nico Rosberg in the much fancied Williams in fourth. Nikko Raikonnen’s Ferrari performed surprisingly well despite a similarly testing day to that of the Red Bull’s, finishing the day with the 3rd fastest time, as Ferrari trialled a new front wing ahead of the season opener in Australia three weeks from now.
It is hard to put too much stock in the results of pre-season testing, but the general trends that insiders had been expecting have been largely followed, with Williams living up to their favourites tag and Red Bull, as predicted, struggling for pace.