- Jerez test
Raikkonen fastest at torpid Jerez opener
Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen set the fastest time on a very quiet opening day of pre-season testing at Jerez, which saw four red flags, one big shunt for Lewis Hamilton and just 93 laps completed between all cars.
Hamilton set the pace in the morning and clocked up the most laps, but went straight on at Turn One at around 12:45 CET, hitting the tyre barrier head on. Two long skid marks were left in the braking zone after the front wing failed on the way down to turn one, which then folded under his front tyres. The accident put an end to his session but Mercedes is confident it will have the car fixed for Wednesday, with no major damage to the chassis tub.
Despite the shunt, Hamilton still had the second highest lap after an industrious morning, but Raikkonen led the way with 31 in total. The pair had similar lap times, but they mean little at this early stage with the teams focused on reliability and ironing out teething problems. Raikkonen's first lap came up short and the Ferrari had to be returned to the pits on a truck, but he soon got back on track and by the afternoon his F14 T was running relatively smoothly.
Defending champion Sebastian Vettel went out on track in the final 20 minutes of the day but only completed a three installation laps interspersed by time spent in the garage. The McLaren did not emerge at all during the course of the day as the team chased hydraulic and electrical problems, meaning Jenson Button will have to wait until Wednesday for his first taste of the MP4-29.
Caterham and Williams both rolled their cars out in the afternoon without an official launch ceremony. The Caterham emerged with roughly two hours remaining in the day and completed just one lap, while the Williams set the third fastest time and notched up a total of seven laps by the end of the day.
Sergio Perez, Jean-Eric Vergne and Esteban Gutierrez all got their first tastes of the Force India, Toro Rosso and Sauber respectively. Vergne also stopped on track in the afternoon but still managed 15 laps in total.
As expected, Marussia skipped the first day to sort out a problem with the car at its factory, but has now sent the MR03 on its way to Jerez. Lotus is not attending this week's test.
Time at close
Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1m27.104s 31 laps Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1m27.820s 18 laps Valtteri Bottas Williams 1m30.082s 7 laps Sergio Perez Force India 1m33.161s 11 laps Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso 1m36.530s 15 laps Esteban Gutierrez Sauber 1m42.257s 7 laps Sebastian Vettel Red Bull no time 3 laps Marcus Ericsson Caterham no time 1 lap