The Brit’s running on the final day of pre-season testing was delayed by a gearbox issue and the team’s mechanics worked throughout the morning to get the car out on track just prior to the 30-minute lunch break.
He had a much more productive afternoon and set the fastest time of the day – narrowly missing out on the quickest time of the third test. He completed 70 laps overall on Sunday and is looking forward to seeing where the W05 sits in the pecking order at the first round in Australia.
“This has definitely been the most challenging winter I’ve experienced and the car is still very much a work in progress, but we’ve learnt a lot over the course of these last few weeks and overall it’s been a good winter of testing for us,” he admitted.
“There’s been an incredible amount of work put in by the team back at the two factories and on track. I have to say a special thanks to the crew here today who had a tough task in front of them but never lost their cool. It was a tough start to the day but they managed to get the car turned around for me to complete some good laps in the afternoon, which was a fantastic effort.
“There’s so much to learn with these new cars; it’s just mind-blowing and I don’t think anybody can be fully ready for the challenge of this season. But I feel as ready as I can be and I’m looking forward to seeing where we are in Melbourne.”
The Brackley-based outfit’s executive director (technical) Paddy Lowe added: “It seems far longer than a month ago that we first rolled the car out on a cold, wet filming day at Silverstone for some very delicate running.
“It’s been a long road to get to the stage we’re at today, running reasonably reliably and showing potential in terms of pace, so all credit once again to everyone involved. There’s still a lot to do before we get to Melbourne but we look forward to the challenge.”
Image courtesy of Mercedes AMG Petronas