Michael Schumacher’s Mercedes and Felipe Massa in Ferrari’s new F10 both ground to a halt during their runs but there were no big problems with the cars and they went on to rack up long sessions.
Force India’s Adrian Sutil, in the VJM03 which was unveiled earlier this week, was quickest for much of the day and the team were confident of doing much better this season than last year’s ninth-place finish.
“Adrian Sutil: master of understatement: ‘That was quite pleasant’,” the team said on their Twitter feed.
However, 2008 champion Hamilton snatched the fastest time of one minute 19.583 seconds amid general expectations that this year’s McLaren, along with the Ferrari, will do much better than last season.
The Jerez track, which also hosts next week’s testing, was much drier than on Friday when rained poured down for much of the day and ruined the session.
Times in testing give little indication of race pace given that cars have different fuel loads. Refuelling during races is banned this season so teams will have to start grands prix with full fuel tanks.
The first race of the season is on March 14 in Bahrain.
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