- Abu Dhabi Test - Day Two
Wehrlein tops second morning as McLaren-Honda has more issues
Mercedes reserve driver Pascal Wehrlein topped the timesheets on the second morning of Abu Dhabi's two-day post-season test as he made his debut in the championship-winning W05-Hybrid.
Once again, McLaren's hopes of extending the mileage on its new Honda power unit were dashed by an electrical problem. The team was ready to run at 08:45, but the engine failed to fire up when Stoffel Vandoorne attempted to hit the track at 09:00. McLaren and Honda spent the rest of the morning chasing the problem, but by the lunch break at 13:00 it had not added any more mileage to the three laps it registered on Tuesday.
Wehrlein drives for Mercedes in DTM and in September this year was announced as Mercedes' reserve driver. He has completed over 30 days in the team's simulator this year and took part in a 500km test in a two-year old Mercedes at Portimao in September. Wehrlein completed 41 laps in total on Wednesday morning with a best time of 1:44.557.
Max Verstappen was second fastest as he spent another day with his new team Toro Rosso. After a suspension failure pitched him into the barrier on Tuesday morning, he had a much more productive start to the day on Wednesday with 63 laps in total.
Raffaele Marciello took over from Kimi Raikkonen at Ferrari. The GP2 racer is a member of Ferrari's development driver team and completed 49 laps behind the wheel over the course of the morning with a best time of 1:45.376.
Among the test and reserve drivers, race regular Daniel Ricciardo was fourth fastest in the Red Bull as he took over from Carlos Sainz Jr to gather data for the winter. Felipe Nasr took part in his final session as Williams' reserve driver before he moves to Sauber next year and was fifth fastest with 21 laps.
After driving during first practice in Abu Dhabi, F3 champion Esteban Ocon was back behind the wheel of the Lotus on Tuesday morning before handing over the car to GP3 champion Alex Lynn in the afternoon. Lynn had hoped to be in the running for a Toro Rosso drive next year, but now looks unlikely to be on the F1 grid in 2015 and is hoping to gain as much experience as possible in the Lotus.
"I'm very grateful for the chance to drive the car. It just goes to show that winning the GP3 Series opens a few doors," he said. "I'm really excited by this opportunity but of course I'm very realistic about it too. I'm just going to go out there and do my best. Hopefully I'll be able to increase my experience and pass on some useful feedback to the engineers. I don't think there are any particular expectations from anybody: I just want to do a solid job and learn as much as I can about Formula One."
Marcus Ericsson was the seventh fastest driver of the morning as he continues to get to know his new team Sauber. Ericsson has signed for the team next year and was quicker than the Caterham he raced this season, which was being piloted by his replacement in Abu Dhabi Will Stevens.
Spike Goddard rounded off the times as he made his F1 debut in the Force India. The Australian Formula 3 driver was 4.181s off the pace of Wehrlein and completed 33 laps in total.
Times at lunch break:
1. Pascal Wehrlein Mercedes 1:44.557 42 laps 2. Max Verstappen Toro Rosso 1:45.222 63 laps 3. Raffaele Marciello Ferrari 1:45.376 49 laps 4. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull 1:45.666 60 laps 5. Felipe Nasr Williams 1:45.937 21 laps 6. Esteban Ocon Lotus 1:47.014 21 laps 7. Marcus Ericsson Sauber 1:47.173 34 laps 8. Will Stevens Caterham 1:48.348 43 laps 9. Spike Goddard Force India 1:48.738 33 laps 10. Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren No time 0 laps