Nico Rosberg’s running on the opening day of the third and final pre-season test was cut short due to a number of minor problems with the new Mercedes W05.
The German admitted that the Brackley-based outfit was “pushing everything to the limit” on Thursday as they trialled new updates and completed set-up and race procedure work, as well as managing some long runs. He lapped the Bahrain International Circuit 89 times and set the fourth fastest lap.
“That was not a fantastic day for us,” said the 28-year-old. “We tried some new parts on the car and you find out a lot through doing that. But unfortunately we did not only discover good things today. I managed to do a couple of good laps before lunch but in the afternoon we had a few small problems which ended my running a bit earlier than planned.
“This shows that we are pushing everything to the limit and we still have a massive challenge in front of us during the last three days of testing. We need to maximise our time here to be prepared for Melbourne. But after a difficult day overall we are on the right path.”
Mercedes AMG Petronas executive director (technical) Paddy Lowe added: “We’ve re-grouped after last week’s test and come back with the intention of running as close as possible to our Melbourne race specification with the F1 W05. In addition to completing our final preparations from the reliability and performance perspectives, we have also brought a number of aerodynamic updates to the car for evaluation throughout the week.
“This first day got off to a slightly hesitant start, with a few minor issues on our side combined with a number of red flags interrupting proceedings. Once we got going, however, Nico got straight into some relatively long runs on the medium tyre; commencing each with race start procedures, ending with practice pit stops and evaluating a few setup variations in between.
“By lunchtime and into the early part of afternoon, however, a number of problems with the car began to emerge which hindered Nico’s progress and eventually brought our running to a halt an hour ahead of schedule. We understand what went wrong and will be reviewing it overnight with the aim of having a better day tomorrow.”
Image courtesy of Mercedes AMG Petronas