Raikkonen at the helm on final test day
Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen remained at the helm of today’s wet weather and final test day in Barcelona.
Raikkonen clocked a 1:20.872 during a period when the track was in dry mode. Variations in the track conditions meant that the best times were set by soft-shod cars.
Valtteri’s Bottas all-week best of 1:19.705 remained out of reach.
The day started on full-wets for drivers who investigated Pirelli’s compounds and their car’s performance. Raikkonen had a moment at Turn 13 but luckily managed to keep the SF70H away from the barriers.
As conditions started to dry, Pirelli’s intermediate tyre were the brought out. The track was dampened again during the lunch break but progressively dried encouraging teams to resume dry testing programmes.
With Hamilton sidelined in the morning by an electrical issue, Valtteri Bottas took over duties for Mercedes in the afternoon, finishing the day with the eighth fastest lap.
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Max Verstappen’s running was slightly hampered was bothered by a repetitive exhaust issue, but the Dutchman ended the session second fastest, a little under a second from Raikkonen.
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Renault’s Nico Hulkenberg enjoyed a good work session in the afternoon while Jolyon Palmer’s morning work started late. The Brit still managed a positive third fastest time overall.
Haas’ Romain Grosjean was the day’s marathon man, clocking a total of 116 laps and ending fourth quickest.
Sauber’s Antonio Giovinazzi clocked a 1:22.401 on an Ultrasoft compound run which turned out to be the young Italian’s personal best. It remains to be seen whether his lease with the Swiss outfit will be renewed next week as Pascal Wehrlein is expected to be back at the wheel.
A power unit change kept Toro Rosso and Dany Kvyat in the garage all day.
Testing at the Circuit de Catalunya resumes next Tuesday, March 7.