Rosberg tops Day 1 of 2nd F1 test

Nico Rosberg
Nico Rosberg

Nico Rosberg set the pace as Mercedes used soft tires for the first time in 2016 pre-season Formula 1 testing at Barcelona on Tuesday as Mercedes begins to demonstrate its true pace.

The world champion team chose not to run any soft tires last week as it focused on logging mileage in search of reliability, with Lewis Hamilton and Rosberg managing 675 laps between them.

With Mercedes opting to split its driver time between Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton to a session per day, the German completed a race simulation before strapping on the yellow-banded soft Pirelli tires and set an impressive 1m 23.022s. The time remained undefeated through the entire afternoon session and is the second quickest time from combined pre-season testing – only two-tenths off of Sebastian Vettel's best time on the purple ultra-soft compounds.

Valtteri Bottas took a run at the fastest time with the new ultra-soft tires but trailed by 0.207s, which could be a small indication of the Mercedes advantage, albeit without knowing the fuel loads of each timed lap.

Fernando Alonso was the only driver other than Rosberg to run the softs, with the Spaniard going third quickest, 2.230s off the pace. Alonso was then responsible for the first and only red flag of the day when he stopped at the pit exit with less than a minute to go.

Full testing times from the first day of the second F1 test

Pos Driver Car Time Behind Laps Tires
1 Nico Rosberg Mercedes/Mercedes 1m23.022s 0.000s 82 Soft
2 Valtteri Bottas Williams/Mercedes 1m23.229s 0.207s 123 Ultra-Soft
3 Fernando Alonso McLaren/Honda 1m24.735s 1.713s 93 Soft
4 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari/Ferrari 1m24.836s 1.814s 72 Medium
5 Daniil Kvyat Red Bull/TAG Heuer 1m25.049s 2.027s 69 Medium
6 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m25.051s 2.029s 90 Medium
7 Max Verstappen Toro Rosso/Ferrari 1m25.176s 2.154s 144 Medium
8 Nico Hulkenberg Force India/Mercedes 1m25.336s 2.314s 121 Medium
9 Felipe Nasr Sauber/Ferrari 1m25.493s 2.471s 103 Medium
10 Kevin Magnussen Renault/Renault 1m25.760s 2.738s 119 Medium
11 Esteban Gutierrez Haas/Ferrari 1m26.661s 3.639s 23 Medium
12 Rio Haryanto Manor/Mercedes 1m27.625s 4.603s 45 Medium

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