F1 2015: Hamilton only fourth fastest on day two of Jerez test

PUBLISHED: 18:56 02 February 2015 | UPDATED: 18:56 02 February 2015

Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton behind the wheel of the Mercedes F1 W06 on the second day of the first winter test at Jerez in Spain [Picture: Mercedes-Benz]

Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton behind the wheel of the Mercedes F1 W06 on the second day of the first winter test at Jerez in Spain [Picture: Mercedes-Benz]

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Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton was only fourth fastest on day two of the opening winter test in Spain.

Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton [Picture: Mercedes-Benz]Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton [Picture: Mercedes-Benz]

New Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel topped the timesheets for the second day running at the Circuito de Jerez, lapping more than a second faster than Mercedes AMG Petronas star Hamilton.

The Hertfordshire-born F1 world champion was more concerned with racking up the laps than setting a fast time, with Vettel, Sauber’s Felipe Nasr and Williams driver Valtteri Bottas all quicker than him.

Hamilton emerged for his first run at precisely 9am CET, completing a total of 91 laps – about 403km – before lunch across a series of long runs, with his best time of 1m 22.490s slower than Vettel’s 1m 20.984s.

A water leak curtailed Hamilton’s running in the afternoon.

Nevertheless, Hamilton described it as “a satisfying day”.

He said: “We did a lot of laps and I got a feel for the car quite quickly.

“We’re in the first days of testing, so it never feels that great as the car is at the worst it will be all season.

“But it feels the same as it did last year, which is a good thing. A little more downforce maybe but otherwise it handles exactly the same.”

Hamilton added: “The balance obviously wasn’t perfect as we’re not working on setup yet, so it could be a lot better.

Jerez day two test times

1 Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari) 1:20.984

2 Felipe Nasr (Sauber) 1:21.867

3 Valtteri Bottas (Williams) 1:22.319

4 Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) 1:22.490

5 Max Verstappen (Toro Rosso) 1:24.167

6 Pastor Maldonado (Lotus) 1:25.802

7 Jenson Button (McLaren) 1:54.655

8 Daniil Kvyat (Red Bull) N/A

“But the priority right now is to put in the laps, not set fast times, and there were lots of positives today.

“We got good mileage and hopefully we’ll get even more in the next two days.”

Hamilton also admitted he’d prefer to be racing for real and can’t wait to get onto the starting grid for the 2015 Australian Grand Prix.

“Testing isn’t the exciting part as a driver – I live to go racing,” said the 30-year-old driver.

“But this is where you build your foundations for the year and we’re all working hard to understand the car.

“Everything from drivability to tyres you have to learn now to stand you in good stead for the season.

“You can’t get excited at this point as there’s a long way to go before Melbourne but there’s a really good energy in the team.

“Everybody is feeling positive and working hard but we’re basing nothing on last year.

“We start again with the same aim as everyone else – to win. I can’t wait to get to that first race.”

The Mercedes team will work overnight to ensure the car is ready for a return to the track tomorrow (Tuesday) morning, with Nico Rosberg taking the wheel again.

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