Despite Sebastian Vettel topping the final day of the young driver test it was Williams development driver Susie Wolff who was dominating the headlines. Wolff – who was the only female driver to take part in the Silverstone test – completed a strong day of running with the Grove based squad and finished a respectable ninth on the time sheets.
The Scottish racer spent most of the day completing aero runs and also got in some pit stop practice as well. She completed 89 laps at the wheel of the FW35 – a car that she was the first to drive at a straight line test in February.
Speaking about her day driving the car, she said in a statement: “It was fantastic today. The team did a great job getting me through the day, talking me through everything step by step. In hindsight it would have been good to run the new tyres later in the day after I’d had more time in the car as I don’t think I got the best out of the medium tyres.”
She also revealed that it was challenging physically to lap the circuit almost 90 times but she was prepared for it and it was manageable: “Physically it wasn’t easy, but it was what I was expecting. I was well prepared so it was completely manageable. My only problem was my seat as I was moving around a little. Doing the pitstops this afternoon was also really beneficial as there is a lot to think about coming into the stops.”
Summing up the day as a whole she said: “It was a fantastic experience.”
Xevi Pujolar, Chief Engineer at the Williams F1 Team, said on the days running: “Susie did a great job for us today. We did some aero tests this morning while she familiarised herself with the car and then we moved onto some performance and development work with her. In the afternoon we combined some general running with live pitstop practice, which is an area we are keen to improve ahead of the next race. We made some good progress and Susie was good at stopping on the mark every time.”
He concluded saying: “Overall we have had a successful test, gathering lots of data to take back to the wind tunnel and have some experience to know what to expect from the tyres in Budapest.”
Image courtesy of Octane Photographic