Sebastian Vettel almost doubled the number of laps the new RB10 has completed in the second day of testing in Bahrain.
After running 21 laps in Jerez, Spain, last month and 14 yesterday, Wednesday. Vettel put another 59 laps on Tilbrook’s 2014 racer on Thursday.
The world champion set a time of 1:40,340 - the seventh fastest time of the day. Kevin Magnussen set the fastest time in the McLaren.
“Definitely a better day today,” Vettel said afterwards. “We did more laps, so that’s encouraging.
“It’s good to check the car, check the reliability, but obviously there is a lot still to do. It was good to get a proper first feel for the car and it feels OK but there’s a lot more to come.”
Although his fastest time was some five seconds off Magnussen’s, Vettel said testing times are largely a mystery and not much can be read into them.
He said: “It’s difficult to talk about catching up [to rivals] because I don’t know what other people are doing, but we did more laps than we have done so far and that’s the big thing.
“We’re learning every single lap, even if the quality of the lap is sometimes not the best. However, the most important thing is to run and we did that.
“The last two days have been very useful. I hope Daniel can get some more good laps in tomorrow.”
Daniel Ricciardo takes over testing duties for the final two days of the test.