The German believes Force India is in good shape ahead of the first round of the year in Australia. He completed 74 laps on the final day of testing, less than expected thanks to a component failure which ended his day early, and set the fourth fastest time.
His running concluded a very positive pre-season test programme for the Silverstone-based outfit. The next time he will drive the VJM07 will be in first practice for the Australian Grand Prix.
“The final day of testing went pretty well,” he admitted. “In the end we didn’t do the race simulation, but we did some long runs and signed off a lot of other things on the job list. We didn’t do as many laps as yesterday, but we still made progress and learned some new things.
“So it’s been two good days for me and I’m feeling pretty satisfied. You always want more time to prepare, but I think we’re in good shape. The car has come a long way since the first Jerez test and we have made progress every day.”
Technical director Andrew Green explained the cause for the team’s early end to testing: “The final day in Bahrain saw a continuation of yesterday’s work improving the car balance, collecting tyre data, and some long runs. Our programme ended slightly early with a suspected component failure, which was a result of high mileage, and so we didn’t manage to complete our target number of laps. Nonetheless our time in Bahrain has gone largely to plan with the mileage achieved during the previous three days leaving us in good shape going into Melbourne.”
He added: “We’re feeling positive about our reliability and have explored some encouraging directions for improving car performance. The other focus has been on our race readiness and we’ve done a great deal of homework to prepare the drivers for the challenge that awaits them in Melbourne.”
Image courtesy of Sahara Force India F1 Team