Kimi Räikkönen had his first taste of the E21 on track during the third day of testing in Jerez, Spain, ending the day with the 4th fastest time after a programme of aerodynamic assessment.
A crisp morning gave way to glorious blue skies as the team ran through a variety of exhaust evaluations. Running for Kimi ended early due to a clutch issue. Kimi Räikkönen will take the wheel of the E21 for final day of the Jerez test tomorrow.
Track: Jerez, Spain, 4.4km
Weather: Sunny, ambient 5-18°C, track 7-26°C
Programme: System checks, temperature monitoring, data correlation, evaluation of the performance of the car with its initial aerodynamic package.
Laps Completed: 40
Classification: P4, 1:19.200
Interruptions: Running curtailed early (clutch).
Kimi Räikkönen: “It was good to get behind the wheel of a Formula 1 car again. The E21 feels quite good so far, even if the balance isn’t quite to my liking yet. That didn’t stop us going through the programme we wanted to do which had a lot of aero runs in it. We know the car can go faster, we were just running through what we needed to achieve. It’s a shame that we had a clutch issue at the end of the day, but that’s why we come testing so we can find these problems and fix them.”
Raikkonen : Lotus pace encouraging
“It feels better than last year at this time. I think we have a good car, but how good it is this year we will only see it during the races and during the season. But it is not a bad start. The changes are not massive but it feels better,” he said. “We are missing some parts but there is no bad point on it. It is a normal first day. We did one change and used only the hard tyres. We still don’t have all the parts that we will run in the races and we had last year, so it only can get better. It is not too bad. We did some work on the seat, like is normal for the first test. You make the seat at the factory and then it feels OK, but you can only tell when you drive. It is OK now for tomorrow and we can start the day properly.”
Alan Permane, Trackside Operations Director: “Although we haven’t covered as many laps as we have on the previous two days we have still have been very productive. We spent much of the morning testing various exhaust exit specifications for our Coandă system. The car isn’t yet fully to Kimi’s liking, but we improved this through the day. We still have work to do with the balance, which is something we’ll work on tomorrow. Running ended early for us with a clutch failure which we’re investigating, but overall we’ve had a productive day of aero and exhaust testing.”
Q: How would you assess the first three days of running with the E21?
AP: Everything we’ve seen so far has been positive. Romain had two days in the car and was quickly up to pace and giving positive feedback. We were able to get a good idea of the performance of the 2013 tyres from the second day’s running. We’ve had Kimi in the car for a day now and been able to evaluate several of the different exhaust packages we have and also work on getting him happy with setup.
Q: Have there been any reliability concerns?
AP: We’ve had nothing major to concern ourselves with, which is promising. Of course, it hasn’t all been perfect but that is what testing is for; to refine the car and expose any weaknesses it may have. At the end of today’s running we had a clutch issue which prevented us from going on track for the last hour. This is something we’re investigating; hopefully it’s something we can identify and prevent from happening in the future.
Q: There seem to be long periods where the car is in the garage; what’s happening behind the screens?
AP: A variety of things. We started today with a fairly complex pressure array to measure the effect of different exhaust exits which was fitted overnight and took around an hour to remove completely. We could also be changing the exhausts themselves which means removal of the rear bodywork, or moving the ballast around which requires a fair amount of strip-down of the car, or checking over the car after a shake-down or installation lap; all of these procedures take a reasonable amount of time Sometimes we’re just having lunch.
5 thoughts on “Jerez Testing Day 3: Report + Quotes”
I am really looking forward to this season! Lotus looks good!
And on a somewhat unrelated (and a bit sad) note, Kimi and Jenni have separated. Thought I guess this is not much of a surprise, we have not seen them together for ages. The news was confirmed by Riku Kuvaja who is (I think) Kimi’s business manager (right?).
Yeah 😦 I didn’t give it any attention today as it’s a private affair.
Nooooo, why is he using Bell helmet? Arai are so much cooler!!!!
I’m Arai fanboy and I prefer it over any other manufacturer (Schuberth, Bell and others).
The possible reason for using Bell helmet today is because the Lotus team was using the same model for aerodynamic tests in their factory during the winter so the team wanted to compare the data with exact the same helmet model.
The shortened opening day didn’t stress Räikkönen
Kimi Räikkönen assured that his short opening day with the new E21-car didn’t stress him at all.
– It’s completely normal that the first testing day with a new car usually is only driving around the track. There was some electric problem in the afternoon so I didn’t have time to drive other than with hard tires.
– It’s difficult to say anything about the car at this point. We only had time to make one setup-change and it got better immediately. On Friday we will see how we get the car to go. I got a completely ok-feeling from it. It’s a better car than we had last year on this track, that’s for sure, Räikkönen told TS.
– As for myself it’s easier to start when we know each other in the team. But it doesn’t necessarily mean that we go much faster than last year. There are so many things that can go wrong, but on the other hand there are also many things that might help us.
– The goal is to improve, but then again everybody else has the same goal – starting from those who won the championship. We should be able to do it in theory, but we can only see in Melbourne what our pace is compared to others’ pace, Räikkönen chatted.
– All parts in the car are new but it doesn’t differ much from last year. It’s the same exhaust that whe had at the end of the season and the team has had quite good opening days with it, Räikkönen said.
According to Alan Permane Lotus used a lot of time with the Coanda-effect when the team tested different things by which the exhaust gas can be directed in the car’s cover to create more downforce.
– The car is still not the way Kimi wants it to be, but we went forward. There’s a lot of work with the balance. We continue with that on Friday, Permane said.
Turun Sanomat, Jerez
HEIKKI KULTA (translation courtesy of Nicole/Wolfie)