The three days of testing at Mugello ended yesterday evening with the fastest time of the test going to Romain Grosjean, who lapped his Lotus in 1m21.035s. This was two-tenths of a second faster than the best time achieved by Sebastian Vettel’s Red Bull, which clocked a 1m21.363s. All the teams were trying updated versions of their cars, but the biggest of the upgrades seems to have been the Ferrari, which ran a new rear end on the final day of the test, although efforts to assess this were hampered when Fernando Alonso went off and damaged the car. The new bodywork at the rear featured relocated exhaust outlets, which are now in the centre of the car. This was accompanied by a reworking of the airflow around the rear, with a much tighter “coke bottle” shape. Alonso ended the test with the third fastest time, a 1m21.363s, ahead of Kamui Kobayashi’s Sauber, which recorded a 1m21.603s and Daniel Ricciardo’s Toro Rosso, with was a thousandth of a second slower.
Mark Webber was sixth overall in his Red Bull, but he was nearly a second off Grosjean’s pace. Sergio Perez was next with a 1m22.229s, ahead of Felipe Massa’s Ferrari, which clocked 1m22.257s. The top 10 was completed by Nico Hulkenberg’s Force India (1m22.325s) and Jean-Eric Vergne’s Toro Rosso (1m22.422s). The different conditions on the different days meant that the times were something of a jumble with Pastor Maldonado 11th for Williams (1m22.497s), ahead of Nico Rosberg’s Mercedes (1m22.579s) and Oliver Turvey’s McLaren (1m22.662s).
Paul di Resta was 14th in his Force India with a 1m23.002s, ahead of Heikki Kovalainen’s Caterham (1m23.169s) and Michael Schumacher’s Mercedes (1m23.404s). The top 20 was completed by the Marussias of Timo Glock (1m23.466s) and Charles Pic (1m23.982s), Jerome D’Ambrosio’s Lotus (1m24.048s) and Vitaly Petrov’s Caterham (1m24.312s).
A total of 25 drivers took part in the test with Gary Paffett (McLaren), setting a 1m24.480s; Bruno Senna (Williams), a 1m24.842s. Jules Bianchi (Force India) was next with a 1m25.475s, ahead of Rodolfo Gonzalez (Caterham), who set a 1m27.197s and Valtteri Bottas (Williams), who rounded off the list with a 1m29.179s.