Fernando Alonso had his first run the Ferrari F14 T at Jerez today, and the Spaniard pronounced himself happy with progress so far.
He focussed on aero mapping in the morning, before turning his attention to set-up in the afternoon. He completed 58 laps, recording a time that was 2.2s off the best time of Kevin Magnussen.
“The car has been put on track three days ago, and we are in the very early stages of understanding the car,” said Alonso. “We need to make as many laps as possible these days, and in Bahrain as well, because every lap with all the changes that we have in the rules is very welcome, all the information that is coming.
“We discovered some potential problems, we discovered some new things. It was a good day today, going back to the steering wheel and driving in front of spectators and driving with a better feeling obviously than we have in the simulator. We have a couple of months with not driving these cars, and the simulator can give you an idea, but it’s never the same.”
Some drivers have stressed how different the cars are to drive this year, but intriguingly like his team mate Raikkonen, Fernando downplayed the changes.
“No big difference, to be honest. You jump in the car and there’s no big difference on driving style or big difference on how the things work this year. There is a lot of talk about these changes and regulations etc, but the driving style itself is not a big difference compared with what we were doing last year.
“There are some parameters to control more than last year, but at the end of the day I think we will get used to it very quickly. We have to manage one battery, it’s the same as last year, it’s just bigger because it does multifunction things, last year it was only for the KERS. But in terms of driving input I don’t think it will be a big difference, driving a 2014 car.”