Testing Testing Testing...2010

Testing Testing Testing...2010 I usually don't go testing until the last big test in Barcelona. This is due to the fact that the cars are usual not fully liveried up etc until then. This year however, I had a commission so had to attend all the tests.

Apart from the first in Valencia where we had wall to wall sunshine for four days, it has been a challenging time for everyone. Eight days of testing in Jerez, six days of rain! Barcelona was better, but still it was cold and nowhere near the conditions to test for the heat of the first three races. For many of the teams, it was a largely a waste of time. A few missed the first test in Valencia due to cars not being ready, big players Red Bull being one of them.

Talking with the guys in the garage made you realise just how hard testing can be. I know these guys work relentlessly at races, but it's here at the test where they show their true mettle. Not only are they having to work long hours during the day on the new creation, there is nightshift toiling away all through the darkness. By the end of the test, there were some extremely tired guys out there who know that due to the weather, there is still a long way to go.

Testing is always a vague indicator as to where teams are with their cars. The amount of time lost due to the weather this year as added yet more questions as to where the teams stand. It is of course exactly what we needed for a dramatic start to the year. With an element of chance in the mix, the first three races could be very interesting, with some of the bigger teams behind on development, allowing the smaller teams who were in Valencia the opportunity to get one up on them.

There were two new teams on offer during the winter testing. We had Virgin Racing and the return of Lotus. It was great to see the simple livery of British Racing Green back in the paddock. The general vibe of Tony Fernandes's Lotus Team under the stewardship of Mike Gascoyne has added a pleasant reminder to us all that you can go racing in F1 without bucket loads of paranoia and subterfuge. A refreshing change.

Virgin Racing on the other hand were straight into the swing of F1. Fully screened up and tetchy when they were first pulled back was not the way to arrive into the sport. We're not interested in your front wing. They can all be shot on track anyway. All we want is some shots to show the world who you are and what you look like. Let the big teams play those games, this sport needs to lighten up a bit and you guys are the perfect for this. It didn't help that your car wouldn't play ball at first, but it's a long year, so lets not make it too tedious eh.

Finally, we have to mention the return of Michael Schumacher. It seems that three years away from the cockpit of an F1 car was just too much for him. It's going to very interesting to see how he fares against the new crop of drivers who I feel will not show him the respect he has become accustomed
to.

Roll on Bahrain...

To enjoy my images from testing please visit the formula 1 section of my website and select 2010 testing.

posted on 8th March 2010 06:00pmview comments (2)leave a comment