After a tough evening on Sunday in Sakhir, the Silver Arrows got straight back to work as the push for performance continued at the Bahrain International Circuit in the first in-season test of 2017.
First in-season test of 2017
Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas completed 240 laps (1,299km) between them across the two days of track running, with a focus on addressing the issues with poor rear grip which plagued the team during Sunday's Grand Prix, in addition to tyre, engine and aerodynamic analysis.
After his P2 finish on Sunday, Lewis was back behind the wheel of the W08 on Tuesday, ending the day quickest with a time of 1:31.358 set on the Soft Pirelli tyre.
Lewis: Today was tricky
“Today was tricky with it being so hot and very gusty but we still managed to get through plenty of work,” said Lewis.
“Our focus was on advancing our understanding of the tyres and also the rear of the car so that we can improve our long runs - particularly during the race and on the SuperSoft compound. We came here with a specific goal, so it was positive to get on top of that with the team.
“Sochi is a smoother track and less abrasive on the tyres, so they can go quite a long way. Hopefully we can rely on the pace of our car there rather than our use of the tyres.”
Valtteri: Today was very good
Valtteri was in the car on Wednesday, smashing through a mighty 143 laps as the team worked on its long-run pace. The Finn went quickest with a SuperSoft run late in the afternoon, meaning the Silver Arrows left Bahrain with the two quickest times.
“Today was very good,” said Valtteri. “We got so much running done. We were focusing all day on the long run pace, which was a bit of a problem for us on Sunday compared to Ferrari.
“We did some interesting tests to try and improve both the tyre life and the race pace. We have definitely got plenty to analyse tonight. I think I learned a few tricks today as well.
Next stop: Russia
“To stay here in Bahrain for a test after two back to back races is tough, but the guys have done a great job over these two days of testing. Now we head home for a few days before the next race in Russia.”
With the cars now heading straight to Sochi for next weekend’s Russian Grand Prix, attention at the factory now turns to key learnings from the mass of data gathered in Bahrain. Next stop Russian – and it’s very much game on…