The two-day test sessions ended yesterday for Pirelli and the three teams attending at the Paul Ricard Circuit: Ferrari, Red Bull Racing and McLaren Honda. 660 track laps were completed and so over 2,300 km on the wet track of 3.530 km.
Formula 1 manufacturer chose the French circuit's facilities to test wet tyres on January 25th and 26th, thanks to the automatic watering system of the circuit that uses recycled rainwater. 3 millions liters of recycled water were projected each day on track in order to test tyres in low grip conditions. "We have great conditions here at the Paul Ricard thanks to the watering system to test the tyres longevity and performance. This is the only Grade 1 race circuit with watering system where we can drive over 300 km/h with enough safety areas around track." - Mario Isola, Pirelli Racing Manager.
Kimi Räikkönen and Sebastian Vettel tested for Ferrari, Daniel Ricciardo and Daniil Kvyat for Red Bull Racing, and McLaren Honda left the wheel of its single-seater to Stoffel Vandoorne during 2 days.
German driver Sebastian Vettel, third place at the F1 World Championship last year, said he enjoyed his track day at Le Castellet: " “It is always useful to drive the car, always fun, especially if you have all day in the wet it is quite good fun." - Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari).
As well as Finnish Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari) : "I think Circuit Paul Ricard is a good place to test wet tyres because the track conditions are everytime the same. We help Pirelli and it is useful for us so everybody is happy."
During this second and last track day, 374 laps were completed by the 3 teams on a lower-wet track. Sebastian Vettel made the best lap time with the Ferrari in 1'06''750, Daniil Kvyat the second one with Red Bull Racing car (1'06''833) and then Stoffel Vandoorne on McLaren Honda (1'07''758).
Circuit Paul Ricard CEO said how much he was delighted to host Formula 1 cars: "It is a always a great pleasure to hear V6 engines of F1 single-seaters especially with prestigious F1 teams and Grand Prix drivers. It proves again the quality of our facilities to answer to the most demanding customers requests at the circuit but also at Le Castellet airport and in our hotels. Formula 1 coming in January is a dreamed way to start the year! " - Stéphane Clair, Circuit Paul Ricard CEO.