Vettel on top as McLaren suffer setback

Vettel on top as McLaren suffer setback”

Sebastian Vettel topped the timesheets on the first day of the second test in Barcelona, but there were significant breakdowns at both McLaren and Red Bull.

After Daniel Ricciardo withdrew from his testing duties today due to illness, Max Verstappen drove the RB14 today, setting the third quickest time, less than a tenth of Bottas' time, but on the harder medium tyres.

Bottas and Hamilton collectively set 177 laps between them, six more than Vettel.

Defending champion Lewis Hamilton had the fastest time last week with Mercedes.

Gasly only added one installation lap in the afternoon as the screens stayed firmly in place outside the Toro Rosso garage, while the Haas VF-18 was hindered by a ERS problem which was fixed in time for the Dane to return to the track inside the final hour. Lance Stroll finished the session at the bottom of the time sheets after completing 86 laps in Williams in the afternoon.

Sporting a "shovel wing" underneath his nose (don't go there), Bottas was pace-setter for much of the morning, posting his best time on the soft rubber.

McLaren's hard morning will clearly not have been helped if the Woking outfit were to look further down (or rather up) the pitlane, where Pierre Gasly posted the fourth best time of the morning.

Nico Hulkenberg was seventh for Renault, with Carlos Sainz eighth after taking over the RS18 for the second half of the day.

Force India's hard pre-season continued with the 10th fastest time and the second-fewest amount of laps in the morning, before a more productive afternoon.

His red wasn't the morning's only stoppage as Sergio Perez spun at Turn 4 and kicked up gravel onto the track.

There is no indication that McLaren's issues are directly linked to the Renault engine, which completed 139 laps in the works Renault vehicle and 129 laps in the back of the Red Bull, but Verstappen caused a third red flag later in the day when his Red Bull stopped at Turn 1 with a battery issue briefly after exiting the pits.

Marcus Ericsson set Sauber Alfa Romeo's best lap of the test so far, though was still only 11th ahead of the McLaren of Stoffel Vandoorne.

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